POSTED 23rd October 2017

Top tips for returning to work after breast surgery

Breast surgery such as breast enlargement and breast reduction treatments are among the most common types of plastic surgery, but they should not be taken lightly. As well as carefully considering the changes you wish to make to your body, you will need to consider the time you’ll need to take off from work for recovery.

While most people only need a week to ten days off work, the answer very much depends on you – your physiology and how well your body heals.

To give yourself the best chance of a speedy and smooth recovery, it’s a good idea to think ahead and to have the right plans in place so that you can relax and take it easy, allowing your body to get back to normal as quickly as possible.

Follow these tips and you should be able to return to normal within a couple of weeks of surgery.


Top tips for returning to work after breast surgery

1. Book time off

Depending on the type of surgery you have, bruising and swelling is likely to last for around two weeks, though it may be several weeks or even months before everything settles down completely. Many women to take up to a fortnight off before returning to work, so make sure that you book the appropriate time off before undergoing surgery. If in doubt, be sure to give yourself slightly more time than less, you don’t want to return to work and put your health or comfort in jeopardy.

2. Adapt your work environment

It is a good idea to discuss your surgery with your employer so that they can accommodate your needs after surgery. You are advised to avoid heavy lifting and strenuous exercise for up to eight weeks after surgery. If your job is particularly physically demanding or involves heavy lifting, ask for adjustments so you can continue working without causing pain or injury.

3. Get your story straight

While you may wish to tell some work colleagues that you are having breast surgery, it’s unlikely you’ll want everyone to know. Tell who you want to tell in advance and then ask for their discretion. You may wish to make up a little white lie to tell other colleagues who may want to know why you were absent. Don’t feel bad about this – it’s your body and you don’t need to share all its secrets with everyone!

4. Stay active

It is important to have regular gentle exercise after surgery to prevent infections and blood clots. Make sure to stay mobile at work. If you are mainly sat behind a desk all day, make sure you take regular breaks to get up and walk around. It is important to remember that you may feel tired after surgery and that it’s likely you will need more rest than usual. Listen to your body and don’t overdo it, you may even wish to consider returning to work part-time to allow yourself a break to get back to normal.

5. Look after yourself

To recover quickly, you need to look after your whole body. Make sure to eat a healthy diet and stay hydrated to help your body to heal quickly and prevent infections. It is normal to lose your appetite after surgery, but you need to make sure you eat little and often to help recovery. If you smoke, it is wise to stop before and for at least 6 – 8 weeks post-surgery, to reduce the risk of chest infections.

Tailored support post-surgery

We will provide tailored advice and support to help you get back to normal after your breast surgery, but our advice will always be to take it easy and not to rush back into your normal routine. Breast enlargement and reduction procedures entail major surgery so you need to listen to your body and take time to recover properly.