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Silicone or Saline Breast Implants?


Like women, breast implants come in all shapes and sizes. Whatever size you’re looking for, there’s a breast implant for that. But, what exactly are breast implants made of? If you’re the type of person that thoroughly reads through an ingredients list on every food item or beauty product, then you probably want to know what exactly a breast implant is made of. So, what exactly is being put inside of you? Well, breast implants used by plastic surgeons in Houston commonly fall under two categories: saline or silicone.

All about Saline Breast Implants

Saline implants have an outer silicone shell and are filled with sterile salt water. At first, they are inserted empty but once placed inside the breast pocket, they are then filled with a sterile salt-water solution. The shape and consistency of the salt-water solution gives breasts a “water balloon feeling.” This makes them look rounder and feel quite different from natural breasts. Saline breast implants usually are cheaper than silicone breast implants and are available to women 18 years and older.

When silicone implants are ruptured, there’s no guessing game to whether or not they have been ruptured. You will know immediately as they deflate and your body will naturally absorb the salt water (saline) that erupts from the implant. You will probably need surgery in order to remove the silicone shell and a new implant can be inserted at the same time if you wish.

All about Silicone Breast Implants

Silicone implants come prefilled with a silicone gel- a sticky, thick fluid that closely mimics the feel of human fat. This type of implant is the more popular choice of women looking to have a breast augmentation that results in natural looking and feeling breasts. The natural look does come with a price tag! They are more expensive than saline breast implants. Unlike saline implants that are available to women starting at 18 years old, silicone implants are available to women starting ay 22 years old.

The rupturing of silicone implants is a guessing game. You might not notice right away- or ever - if it is ruptured since free silicone that leaks out will remain trapped in the fibrous tissue that forms around the implant. The gel is designed to hold together and not migrate to any other surrounding area in the body. You may not witness any initial changes to the size and feeling of your breasts for a while with a rupture present. Silicone ruptures are deemed “silent.”

Luckily, leaking silicone gel isn’t a direct cause of any serious health issues such as breast cancer, reproductive problems, or connective tissue diseases. Don’t get too excited yet, the rupture might eventually cause breast pain or changes in the contour or shape of the breast in the long run. If this happens, your plastic surgery in Houston, TX will most likely remove the implant and you will most likely still able to place a new implant in there.

Your next question may be, “Well, if it’s silent then how am I suppose to know this implant is ruptured?” If you take routine MRI’s then the rupture can be easily detected and it is best to consult with your doctor to determine if the implant should be taken out. Other symptoms are breast pain and deformity of the breasts.

Straight to the Point, Saline or Silicone?

First and foremost, if you’re not over the age of 18 you shouldn’t even be considering trying to get a breast augmentation. But, if you are then by default, you can only get saline breast implants. If you’re not in a hurry and can wait a couple more years, you can have the option of getting silicone implants instead.

The next thing you may want to consider is whether you want a natural or a “fake” look to your new breasts. Saline implants feel and look a lot more unnatural due to the saline solution they are filled with. It will feel like water balloons and feel heavier than silicone implants. Silicone breasts are filled with a gel solution that mimics natural breast tissue so they offer a more natural appearance and feeling.

The most important thing to consider is the risks involved. If you are willing to get frequent MRI’s to monitor the health of your breast implants, then silicone breasts are for you. Does your skin easily scar? Silicone gel implants are placed through incisions underneath the breast or around the dark skin surround the nipple so those are the possible places the scarring may occur. Since saline implants are placed un-filled they can also be placed using an incision in the underarm, leaving a scar in a less noticeable area. Also, silicone implants are lighter than saline so there is a lower risk of downward displacement due to gravity than with saline implants.

Economically speaking, saline implants are less expensive than silicone implants, but ultimately you should consult with your plastic surgeon to determine the best type of implant to use for your procedure.

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