What Are the Differences Between Saline and Silicone Implants?

Girl with big Breasts in white underwear Women consider getting breast implants for all kinds of reasons. Most simply want to enhance their appearance.  They may want a larger and fuller look.  Some want to improve asymmetries. Whatever reason has led you to this blog, it’s important to know the basics about breast implants.

At Kunkel Plastic Surgery, we offer both types of implants – saline and silicone.  While both may achieve a similar look, there are pros and cons that come with each.

Saline Implants

Saline implants have been around since the 1960s. The outer shell is made from silicone rubber, while the inside is filled with sterile saltwater (saline). They are typically inserted while empty and then filled up once they’re in place.

They are generally less expensive than their silicone counterparts, and the incision sites may be a little smaller.  Some women notice a “sloshing” sound for a few weeks after the implants are placed.  The implants tend to feel a little more crinkly on the sides and the bottoms of the breasts than silicone implants.

Silicone Implants

Silicone implants are made entirely of the synthetic material silicone. The outer shell is made from silicone rubber, and the inside is filled with silicone gel.   Silicone implants might provide a little more fullness in the upper areas of the breasts than saline implants.  They may also feel a little more natural to a hand touching the breast than saline implants.

A woman must be 18 years old to get saline implants, and 22 to get silicone. While it’s technically legal to get silicone implants under the age of 22, sometimes the manufacturers will not honor the warranty in those cases.

Risk – Leaking

All cosmetic and plastic surgery procedures pose their own set of risks.  Perhaps the biggest issue with implants is that they won’t last a lifetime.  They will eventually leak and more surgery will be required when that happens. When a saline implant leaks, the implant deflates and the breast goes flat.  It becomes a “social emergency” because it’s noticeable.

When a silicone implant ruptures, you may not even notice it. This is called a silent rupture.  In other instances, sometimes a woman may notice one breast becomes firm or changes shape.  The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suggests women who have silicone implants undergo MRIs or ultrasounds after a few years to monitor for rupture. Even if the silicone leaks, evidence suggests a low risk of hazards to your health.

The Choice is Yours

Breast implants can help enhance a woman’s confidence, leaving her feeling more self-assured. If you’re interested in this cosmetic procedure or have any questions about the types of implants we use, feel free to contact Kunkel Plastic Surgery by calling 817-335-5200 today.

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