Breast Lift Recovery Week By Week [2023 Guide]

Dr.Edna Skopljak

Dr.Edna Skopljak

Edna Skopljak is a Doctor of Medicine. She has over 10 years of experience in the medical field. She is also a volunteer at several organizations, and is always looking for ways to improve the health of her community.

A breast lift is a surgical procedure to lift and reshape the chest. Moreover, after the procedure, you will need up to six weeks to recover fully; however, there are steps you can take to ensure a smooth healing process. Furthermore, here is a breast lift recovery week-by-week guide to give you further insight into what to expect and how to manage pain, discomfort, swelling, scarring, et cetera.

Week 1: Immediately After Surgery

Physical sensations and symptoms, such as pain and swelling.

You may feel pain and swelling during the first week after your surgery. Moreover, it’s normal to experience swelling and discomfort following a breast lift surgery. Therefore, you will need to wear a compression bra or vest to support your breasts and reduce the swelling as they heal.

Required rest and limitations on physical activity

Physical activity should be minimal during the first week following your breast lift, as any strenuous activity can be detrimental to your recovery. Moreover, specialists recommend avoiding lifting or stretching your arms above your head to prevent further discomfort. On the other hand, be sure to sleep on your back and avoid heavy lifting.

Importance of following post-operative instructions

Your surgical team will provide you with a list of post-operative instructions that you need to follow to ensure a steady recovery following your breast lift. For example, take any antibiotics and pain medication prescribed to you. Furthermore, it’s important to report any complications you may experience to your surgical team. Ignoring any complications will result in a more difficult recovery or permanent issues.

Potential complications to watch for

Every surgical procedure often comes with potential complications, including a breast lift. Moreover, a few complications include blood clots, infection, difficulty lactating in the future, and skin discoloration. However, some of these complications can be resolved by your surgical team; therefore, keep them updated with any complications or questions you may have regarding the healing process.

Week 2: Return to Work

Gradual increase in activity level and return to work

The pain and swelling will begin to subside in your second week of recovery. You may also notice the bruising fading. Furthermore, if you feel capable, you can return to work if your occupation does not involve heavy lifting or strenuous activity.

Continuing to manage pain and swelling

Its recommended that you continue wearing the compression bra during the second week following your breast lift to continue managing any swelling. Moreover, continue taking the pain medication prescribed by your surgical team to manage any pain.

Introduction of scar care and management

During the second week of recovery, you can clean the incisions. Moreover, tape the incisions close together to limit the visibility of the scar as the area heals. Finally, avoid strenuous activity that can stretch the incisions and cause worse scarring.

Introduction of light exercises to help with healing

During the early stages of your recovery, keeping physical activity at a minimum is important. However, light exercise is recommended to stay healthy and boost the healing process. Moreover, avoid any upper body exercises which will cause strain on the chest. Therefore, focus on lower body exercises, such as squats, lunges, and walking.

Week 3: Increased Mobility

Further reduction in pain and swelling

Most of the pain, swelling, and bruising will have subsided by the third week following your breast lift. However, if you continue to feel pain or discomfort, you can start taking a weaker pain medication to manage your symptoms.

Introduction of moderate exercises to aid in healing and mobility

It’s important to keep active during your recovery stage, and from the third week, you can move up to moderate exercises to aid in healing and mobility. For example, you can increase the number and length of your squats, lunges, and walks.

Continued focus on scar management

Your incisions should be fully closed by the third week following your breast lift. Therefore, you can use silicone bandages to reduce the appearance of any scarring. Moreover, you can massage the scars to flatten the incisions and reduce any inflammation in the area.

Week 4: Resuming Normal Activities

Near-elimination of pain and swelling

By the 4th week following a breast lift, most women no longer experience any pain or swelling in their breasts. Moreover, you can start transitioning from wearing your compression bra to your normal undergarments by this time.

Resumption of regular physical activities, such as exercise and housework

After your 4-week check-up with your doctor, you can start exercising your upper body. Moreover, you can presume your usual physical activities and housework if you feel you have recovered enough.

Continued focus on scar management and care

Continue to focus on reducing the appearance of your scars. For example, continue to use silicone gel bandages and scar massages. Moreover, you can consider other scar reduction methods, such as laser surgery and chemical peels. Additionally, continue to keep the scars hydrated for the next few weeks.

Weeks 5-6: Long-Term Recovery

Continued focus on scar care

Continue using any creams or remedies you have been using to reduce the scarring. Moreover, many women continue the scar management routine for up to 12 months following their breast lift.

Potential follow-up appointments with the surgeon

Your surgeon will schedule a follow-up appointment to monitor the healing progress of your breast lift. Moreover, it’s important to attend every follow-up appointment scheduled by your surgeon to ensure your breast lift is healing well and prevent any potential complications.

Resuming all normal activities

After the fifth week following your breast lift, you can resume all normal activities if you feel ready to do so. However, everyone’s recovery is unique; therefore, listen to your body and surgeon before diving into your usual day-to-day activities.


Overall, the breast lift recovery week-by-week guide will help you understand what to expect during your healing process and how to manage the various aspects of recovering from this procedure.

Moreover, examining this guide will ensure you achieve the best results following your breast lift while guaranteeing a smooth recovery.