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In general, society seems to have a set of standards for women that are very different than the standards set for men. Men are more likely to be judged based on their education level, their professional accomplishments and their achievements in life. On the other hand, a woman is almost immediately judged based on her appearance — especially her figure.

For years, women who have chosen to have a breast augmentation performed have battled the stigma surrounding this cosmetic procedure. While that stigma is slowly lifting and society is having a change of heart about plastic surgery in general, women must still maneuver the opinions of others when discussing their personal decision to have a breast augmentation.

For years, stereotypes in movies, advertisements and even literature have portrayed women with large breasts as being overly-sexual, under-educated and reliant upon men for their happiness and fulfillment in life. Thus, the stigma quickly developed that women who opted to enlarge or reshape their breasts through cosmetic surgery must be vain, selfish and looking to attract men. However, choosing to have a breast augmentation does not make a woman any of these things. Many women choose to have this plastic surgery performed simply because it makes them feel better about themselves and improves their confidence.

According to Breast Enlargement Advice, the best way for women to overcome some of the stigmas associated with this cosmetic surgery is to choose a natural size for their new breasts. If a woman has small breasts to begin with and only wears an A cup bra, then moving up to a C cup will appear natural and normal. However, women who decide to go beyond the natural sizes may face increased scrutiny from peers, coworkers and people in the public. Whatever size a woman decides on for her new breasts, she may have to deal with negative feedback from others.

Some people find an increase in sexual harassment in the work place after they have a breast enlargement surgery done, while others hear derogatory comments from friends and family members about their new image. The best way for women to cope with this is to ignore the comments completely. While this is easier said than done, a woman must feel confident that she made her choice for the right reasons and not provide satisfaction to the people who are trying to bring her down.

Women may take comfort in the fact that breast enlargement surgery is increasing in popularity across the entire country, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Even in conservative states, where plastic surgery has long had a stigma attached to it, more women are opting to have this surgery performed. The numbers have increased drastically since the late 1990s, when just more than 100,000 breast augmentation procedures were performed in the United States. In 2011, more than 315,000 breast enhancement surgeries were performed across the country.

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, breast augmentation is defined as a surgical procedure designed to increase the fullness and size of the breasts while also improving their symmetry. Women who have small breasts as a result of genetics often opt to have this surgery to increase their size and improve their figure. However, many women opt to have this surgery done after their child-rearing years are complete, as pregnancy and breastfeeding can have a negative impact on the appearance of the breasts.

Cohesive silicone breast implants are the latest development in the field,” said Dr. Tim Love MD, a board-certified plastic surgeon in Oklahoma City. “This anatomical or tear drop shape implant is often ideal for use in patients with very little breast shape of their own.” He goes on to add, “These implants are commonly used in primary augmentation in a younger patient or in those correcting post pregnancy changes of volume and or shape loss.”

At the end of the day, having a breast augmentation procedure or any plastic surgery procedure is an extremely personal decision. Women should work with a highly-skilled and qualified cosmetic surgeon who will provide them with sound advice as well as natural-looking results. It’s important that women are aware of society’s opinions about this procedure, so that they can manage it and overcome the stigma after their own operation is complete.

Many plastic surgery patients take comfort in the fact that the stigmas surrounding cosmetic surgery and the breast augmentation procedure are slowly but surely changing. People are beginning to realize that cosmetic surgery is a wonderful way to boost your own self-confidence and improve many different aspects of your life.