Basics Of Breast Reconstruction, And Why Post-Mastectomy Patients Should Consider Implants

If you have undergone a mastectomy or are planning on it, you should strongly consider getting breast implants. There are several breast reconstruction options available for post-mastectomy patients, but implants just might be the best choice for you. Here is a look at breast reconstruction and reasons why you should opt for implants. What is Breast Reconstruction Surgery? If your doctor diagnosed you with breast cancer, or if your genetics increase your risk of developing breast cancer, your doctor may recommend a mastectomy. A “mastectomy” is the removal of one or both of your breasts. Many patients undergoing a mastectomy opt for breast reconstruction surgery as well. Breast reconstruction surgery is a cosmetic procedure used to reconstruct one or both breasts after a mastectomy. There are three predominate breast reconstruction options: flaps, breast regeneration, and implants. Breast regeneration and flaps involve removing tissue, muscle, fat, or skin from one part of your body and relocating it to your breast area. Implants, made of silicone or saline, expand the area between the muscle and skin and give the appearance of a full breast. Breast Implants: The Most Popular Choice Breast augmentation is the second most common cosmetic surgery procedure in the world. In the United States, particularly, breast implants are extremely popular. Even though the majority of breast implant patients choose this procedure for purely cosmetic reasons, it is also the most popular option for post-mastectomy breast reconstruction. Implants are so popular with mastectomy patients for a number of reasons. Implants leave fewer scars than regeneration and flap procedures, and both hospital and recovery times can be much shorter. Implants Have Come a Long Way If you are struggling with the decision of whether or not to choose implants for breast reconstruction because of health concerns, think again. Breast implants have gotten a bad rap in the past, but implant innovation has dispelled many of these concerns. Myth: The FDA banned implants in the 1990s. Fact: The FDA banned silicone-based implants because early research linked leaking implants to severe medical problems. Later studies revealed that this link was unfounded, and in 2003, the FDA lifted the ban on silicone-based implants. If, despite these studies, you are still concerned about the risks of silicone, you can opt for saline-based implants instead. Myth: Implants mask growing cancers, so your cancer is more likely to return if you chose implant breast reconstruction. Fact: Regardless of whether or not you have had breast reconstruction surgery, you should still diligently schedule mammograms and monthly breast exams. This is especially true if you have already had breast cancer. Myth: Breast implants look unnatural. Fact: The first implants emerged in the mid-1900s. Since then, technology has significantly improved the look and feel of breast implants. There are a variety of breast implant types, so you have more options available to you today. Each type has its own...

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3 Little-Known Ways To Improve Contact Lens Comfort

When a pair of soft contact lenses fit properly, you shouldn’t notice them in your eyes at all. If your contact lenses have always been uncomfortable, you should speak to your eye doctor to see if you are wearing the right lenses for you. However, if your contact lenses are typically comfortable, but you find them uncomfortable on some days and you don’t know why, then this discomfort may be unintentionally caused by your habits. Follow these tips to keep your contact lenses feeling great every day.  1. Stay Hydrated Just as not drinking enough fluids can cause dry skin, being dehydrated can also cause your eyes to become dry. While chronic dry eye can be a medical condition, occasional eye dryness is often caused by a simple lack of fluid intake.  Your contact lenses don’t actually touch your eye lenses — they stay suspended on top of a fine layer of protective fluid over your eye called a lipid layer. When you become dehydrated, this fine layer can lose viscosity, making contact lenses feel uncomfortable.  While using rewetting drops can make your contacts more comfortable temporarily, this comfort often doesn’t last long, as it does not help rebuild your eye’s protective layer. You must keep your entire body hydrated to keep this protective film thick and slippery to protect your delicate eyes from your contact lenses.  2. Wash Your Hands with Baby Cleanser Before Handling Your Lenses Any foreign substance that is on your hands when you insert your contact lenses can lead to contact discomfort. That can include any soap or cleanser residue that is still on your hands after washing them before handling your contact lenses.  For optimal lens comfort, wash your hands with unscented, “tear-free” baby cleanser or shampoo before inserting your contact lenses. While you should always rinse your hands well after washing them, any residue left behind by the baby cleanser will be much less likely to irritate your eyes than residue from bar soap or a moisturizing, scented hand wash would.  3. Close Your Contact Lens Solution Cap After Every Use If you use a contact solution that has a flip-cap, then be sure to close the cap after every use, especially if it is stored in the bathroom. Leaving it open can allow bacteria that goes up into the air when the toilet is flushed into the bottle. The bacteria can then easily make its way onto your lenses and into your eyes where it can cause a very uncomfortable eye infection.  To be even safer, close your toilet lid before you flush and instruct your family to do the same.  Remember these tips for contact lens comfort. Contact lenses should always feel comfortable, and if they don’t, even when following good contact lens habits and hygiene, then speak to an expert like A New Vision to see if you need a...

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4 Unexpected Benefits Of Hospice Care

The idea of going to hospice care can be rather unsettling. Hospice is generally considered as end-of-life care, and it’s typically reserved for individuals who are terminally ill and who have six months or less to live. Although you might already know that this type of care involves round-the-clock medical care and necessary medical supplies, you should know that there is more to hospice than that. These are a few unexpected benefits of hospice care, whether you opt for in-home care or care at a hospice facility. 1. Spiritual Support Many hospice care centers and in-home hospice care services offer spiritual support for both the sick individual and his or her loved ones. This can include meetings with a preacher or priest, Bible readings, spiritual counseling and any other support that the individual and family might need. 2. Errand Running Individuals who are coming up to the end of their lives shouldn’t have to worry about making sure that their bills are paid or that their pets are being properly cared for, and all of these responsibilities can be something of a burden for emotional family members. With hospice care, there are generally people on staff who are willing to handle these types of errands for the patient. 3. Help with Funeral Planning Many people have their funeral plans in their wills, but for those who haven’t completed their wills yet — such as those who got sick very rapidly or who have not had the time or energy to think about it — hospice care can be very helpful. Since these facilities are accustomed to helping people in these situations, they typically have all of the right people on staff to help with this type of planning. 4. Counseling for the Family Watching a loved one go downhill and approach the end of his or her life can be traumatic for many people. Luckily, hospice care facilities and services typically have counselors on staff who can help. These staff members talk with family members and help counsel them and prepare them for their loved ones’ death. They also generally offer counseling services for loved ones after the patient’s death to help them through this difficult time. Although many people understand that hospice care facilities and services offer medical assistance, these services offer so much more than that for sick individuals and their family members. Even though there is never anything easy about the need for hospice care, these services can help make things a little better for patients and their loved ones. Contact a hospice care service, like Carolina East, for more...

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