Breast and Body Image: Your Needs vs. Society’s

Breast augmentation is the most common plastic surgery. Men and women both obsess about breasts. Desire to have the perfect breast comes from within and social influences. Clearly understand your motivation before committing to a life-changing and costly procedure.

Key takeaways:
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    Breasts play a reproductive and seductive role in society.
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    Personality can impact satisfaction and long-lasting results of breast augmentation.
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    Men, on average, are satisfied with the size of women’s breasts, especially those attached to the woman they are with.
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    Complete a self-assessment before making a final decision on breast augmentation.

Why women seek breast augmentation

Breast augmentation is the most common cosmetic surgery. Insurance does not pay for the procedure, follow-ups, or post-operative issues. Yet, thousands of women each year take on the financial responsibility to alter their breast size.

Like any surgery, cosmetic surgery aims to improve a patient’s quality of life. With cosmetic surgery, the improvement is subjective. You decide why you chose to enlarge your breasts and if it made you happy.

Studies have reported that the quality of life is improved by 80-95% in women who did choose to have breast augmentation. The improvement can be better-looking breasts, clothes fitting better, or receiving more attention.

Many reasons motivate women to augment their breasts. They can be:

  • Poor self-esteem.
  • Desire to increase sexual satisfaction.
  • Improve relationships.
  • Look like models/actors/influencers.
  • Improve the shape/look of the breasts.

Body image vs. self-image

Two common factors motivating breast augmentation are body image and self-image. These two are different. Body image is a woman seeing her breast as not normal. They are not shaped right, they do not exist, or they sag and are droopy after having children.

Michael Castleman, the world’s most famous sex author with two blogs on Psychology Today, notes that younger women seek breast augmentation because they feel their breasts are too small, whereas older women seek to repair sagging breasts after having children.

Self-image concerns a poor sense of self that involves more than fixing a woman’s breasts. It is about something deeper. Breast augmentation can satisfy a person with a poor self-image for some time, but ultimately, they will continue to be dissatisfied with themselves for a deeper reason.

Society’s hold on your breasts

Breasts attract the attention of men and women since their appearance on the female body. Today, Michael points out “Women go to several measures to create their version of the perfect breast or hide the fact that they do not meet their expectations”.

Women go to many lengths to have the breasts they want. They will wear padded bras and outfits that either accentuate or hide their breasts. Some women will have long hair to create an illusion of breasts or hide ones that may not look perfect.

What a woman considers perfect is up to her. Women need to understand why they want surgery to change their breasts. According to Michael, men, mental health, and fashion play a role in why women consider breast augmentation.

Coveting larger breasts, for both men and women, began after World War II and continues today with television, movies, and social media playing their part in influencing what breasts women want.

Consider this, women with poor self-image show a higher incidence rate of seeking out psychiatric services within a year after having breast augmentation.

Breasts have an erotic value tied to them. Men like curves and women may seek these curves to be desired by men. In this case, augmenting the breasts may address a small part of a more significant issue.

The most disturbing fact about breast augmentation is the high incidence of suicide in women with breast implants. Patients with underlying psychological issues may have a decline in quality of life a year or more after having the surgery. Seeking help for other problems, such as body dysmorphic disorder, is important to these patients’ safety and outcomes.

Do a self-evaluation before you change your breasts

The decision to have a breast augmentation should not be taken lightly. Get to know yourself before you make that commitment. Address your real reasons for making such a drastic change to your body.

Are you doing this because of self-esteem or self-image? It makes a difference. If you cannot answer this question, speak with a therapist to help discover why you want to augment your breasts.

If you have extraordinary expectations, these can lead to letdowns. Other conditions, such as body dysmorphic disorder, can lead to huge letdowns after breast augmentation. Will breast augmentation be enough?

Are you doing this for someone else? Remember, most men are satisfied with the breasts of the person they are involved with.

Should a plastic surgeon not think breast augmentation is right for you, consider their reasons. Speak with a therapist. The surgeon may see underlying factors that the surgery may do more harm than good. Think twice about searching for any plastic surgeon who will do the surgery for you after others have declined. Your well-being may be at risk.

Breasts are an important part of our culture and society. Women have the opportunity, with breast augmentation, to have the breast they see as perfect. The procedure can be costly and can carry post-operative risks.

Society has influenced the obsession with women’s breasts. It is critical that women understand themselves and why they want to have breast augmentation surgery. Underlying issues impact the quality of life after breast augmentation surgery. Speaking with a therapist before and after about other issues may improve quality of life results.

Before choosing breast augmentation, decide if you are doing this for yourself or society. Will you be satisfied or want more? Listen to the plastic surgeon when consulting about breast augmentation. They can evaluate patients objectively and assess if breast augmentation is the safest option.


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