Tips for Sleeping after Breast Augmentation

While the increased confidence and self-esteem Breast Augmentation can offer is unquestionably exciting, the post-surgery period can be challenging, especially when it comes to ensuring a good night’s sleep. Post-operative discomfort, swelling, and restrictions on sleeping positions can make resting difficult for many people. In this blog, we will discuss essential tips and tricks to help you sleep like a baby and heal like a champ. 

Why Should I Sleep on My Back After Breast Augmentation?

Your sleeping posture is one of the most important post-operative concerns after breast augmentation surgery. Even though it can seem like a little thing, how you sleep has a significant impact on how quickly you heal and how comfortable you feel. Here are some reasons why sleeping on your back after breast augmentation surgery is strongly recommended:

how to sleep after breast augmentation

Minimizes Pressure on the Implants

Breast implants, whether silicone or saline, need time to settle into their desired position. Sleeping on your back ensures that there’s minimal pressure on the newly augmented breasts, allowing them to settle evenly and naturally.

Reduces Swelling

Post-surgery swelling is common, and sleeping on your back can help reduce it. Gravity has less of an effect on your chest when you’re on your back, which means that excess fluid buildup is less likely to occur.

Prevents Implant Displacement

Sleeping on your side or stomach may increase the risk of implant displacement, where the implants shift from their intended position. By sleeping on your back, you reduce the likelihood of this happening, ensuring your results remain consistent and symmetrical.

Scar Care

Depending on the type of incision made during your breast augmentation, sleeping on your back can aid in scar care. It allows your incisions to remain undisturbed, facilitating a smoother healing process and potentially reducing the visibility of scars.

Comfort and Pain Management

While it may take a little getting used to, sleeping on your back can actually be more comfortable post-surgery. It reduces the risk of waking up with discomfort or pain due to the pressure exerted on your chest while sleeping on your side or stomach.

When Can I Sleep on My Side After Breast Augmentation?

After the excitement of breast augmentation surgery, the anticipation of returning to your regular sleeping positions, especially side sleeping, is entirely natural. However, it’s crucial to exercise patience and adhere to your surgeon’s guidelines to ensure a smooth and complication-free recovery.

The timeline for returning to side sleeping varies for each individual and depends on how well your body is healing. Generally, surgeons recommend avoiding sleeping on your side for at least four to six weeks post-surgery. During this time, your implants settle, and the tissues around them adjust to their new shape. Sleeping on your side too soon could disrupt this process and potentially lead to complications.

Here are some important factors to consider before you transition back to side sleeping:

Surgeon's Recommendations

Your surgeon knows your specific case best. They will monitor your progress during follow-up appointments and advise you when to resume side sleeping. Always follow their personalized instructions for the safest recovery.

Healing Progress

Pay attention to your body. If you experience discomfort or pressure when attempting to sleep on your side, it indicates that your body might not be fully ready for that position. Listen to these signals and wait until you feel at ease.

Supportive Pillows

When you do start transitioning to side sleeping, invest in supportive pillows. Placing a pillow under your breast area can provide gentle elevation and reduce direct pressure on the implants, making side sleeping more comfortable and safer for your recovery.

Gradual Transition

Consider easing into side sleeping. Start by reclining at a slight angle, using pillows for support. As your body becomes accustomed to this position, you can gradually adjust the angle until you can comfortably sleep on your side.

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How Long Should I Sleep Elevated After Breast Augmentation?

After your breast augmentation surgery, one of the key recommendations from your surgeon will likely be to sleep in an elevated position. This post-operative habit is more than just a precaution—it’s a crucial element in ensuring a smooth and comfortable recovery. Here’s why sleeping in an elevated position is essential and how long you should maintain this practice:

Reducing Swelling

Elevating your upper body helps facilitate better circulation, significantly reducing swelling. Swelling is a common post-surgery occurrence, and elevating your upper body can minimize fluid retention and inflammation.

Minimizing Discomfort

Breast augmentation surgery can result in tightness and discomfort in the chest area. Sleeping in an elevated position can relieve some of this pressure, making your nights more comfortable.

Optimizing Healing

By keeping your upper body elevated, you encourage the implants to settle into their desired position. This can contribute to a more natural-looking outcome and reduce the risk of complications like implant displacement.

Typically, surgeons recommend sleeping with your upper body elevated for the first 1 to 2 weeks after breast augmentation surgery. This initial period is critical for the healing process. After this time, you can gradually transition to a more regular sleeping position based on your comfort level and your surgeon’s advice.

Elevated Sleeping Positions and Products for Breast Augmentation Recovery

The following sleeping positions and products can help maintain elevation and ensure optimal comfort as you’re recovering from breast surgery:

Back Sleeping with Pillows

The most recommended post-surgery position is sleeping on your back. You can use multiple pillows to prop yourself up. Placing one under your head and upper back and another under your knees is a great way to reduce lower back pressure.

Recliner or Adjustable Bed

If you have access to a recliner or an adjustable bed, these can be incredibly helpful during the initial recovery phase. You can easily customize the angle to maintain the desired elevation without the need for excessive pillows.

Body Pillow

Some find comfort in hugging a body pillow while sleeping on their back. This not only helps maintain the elevated position but also provides a sense of security and support.

Wedge Pillow

Specialized wedge pillows designed for post-surgery recovery can be a convenient option. They are designed to keep you in an elevated position while providing optimal comfort.

how to sleep after breast augmentation

Sleeping After Breast Augmentation

Here are some additional tips for sleeping after breast augmentation surgery to ensure a smooth and comfortable recovery:

  1. Sleep with your surgical bra on for the first 6 weeks of recovery. This will help to reduce swelling and fluid accumulation.
  2. If you are not used to sleeping on your back, practice sleeping on your back a few weeks before your surgery to become accustomed to it. 
  3. Pillows are your best friends during recovery, so be sure to stock up!
  4. Avoid sleeping on your stomach as it can put pressure on your implants and incisions, potentially causing discomfort and affecting your results. Avoid this position until your surgeon approves.
  5. If you’re having trouble sleeping, consult your surgeon about using sleep aids. They may recommend a mild, non-prescription sleep aid to help you rest more comfortably during the recovery period.


In conclusion, your journey to a successful breast augmentation doesn’t end in the operating room—it continues in how you care for yourself during recovery. Remember, your surgeon’s advice is your compass—follow it diligently to ensure a smooth recovery. Prioritize rest and sleep as they are essential ingredients for optimal healing, reducing discomfort, and fostering a positive mindset. Never hesitate to communicate openly with your surgeon about any concerns or questions about your sleep during this critical healing phase.

If you’re considering breast augmentation, the team at Clinique Dallas would love to be a part of your transformative journey. Contact us for more information, or book your virtual consultation to get started today.


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