The appearance and location of a woman’s nipples are important to the appearance of her breasts, and though the shape of the nipple is not a visible parameter like breast size, many women seek nipple reshaping either related to or independent of breast augmentation surgery, a breast lift, or breast reduction. If a woman feels uncomfortable about the shape of her nipples, it can make her reluctant to undress during intimate situations or in public places like locker rooms. The stress and discomfort women experience in relation to poorly shaped nipples can be relieved through the procedure of nipple reshaping.
The nipple is made up of two parts: the actual nipple, which is the narrower, protruding part and contains the milk ducts; and the areola, which is the colored area around the nipple that can contract to assist the nipple in gaining prominence following stimulation. Both the nipple and the areola contain more nerve endings than the rest of the breast, and it is the nipple that tends to lose sensation as a result of breast augmentation surgery.
Some women feel that their nipples are too large for their breasts. Different studies have suggested that the ideal proportion of the nipple:areola:breast is 1:3:9 or that the ideal areola size is 42-45 mm across, but the truth is that what makes nipples “the right size” is a personal decision that every woman must make for herself. Women with nipples that are too large can have them reduced through nipple reduction surgery.
This involves an incision around the edge of the areola and the removal of the excess darkened area. Since the areola often stretches as a result of breast enlargement with breast implants, women looking to improve the proportion of their areolas to their breasts cannot count on breast enlargement, but may have simultaneous areola reduction along with their breast implant placement.
Thick Nipples can be reduced by removing a wedge from the nipple, then reforming the nipple to give it a reduced diameter.
Long Nipples can have the tips removed so that they are what a woman considers to be a more appropriate length.
Nipple reduction, if performed by an experienced cosmetic surgeon, does not generally lead to problems breastfeeding or to reduced nipple sensitivity.
Sometimes women have nipples that do not protrude from the breast. Instead, the nipple turns inward. This is known as shy nipple if the nipple will protrude under stimulation or inverted nipple if the nipple will not evert (protrude), although inverted nipple is often used to describe both conditions. Women with inverted nipples are more likely to experience breastfeeding complications with or without surgery. Depending on the level of correction necessary, inverted nipple surgery may prevent a woman from breastfeeding, although not in all cases.
Sometimes women (and even men) have nipples that are prominent with a pronounced shelf over the surrounding breast tissue. Puffy nipples can be reduced to a level closer to that of the surrounding breast.
Nipples that are too small are harder to correct than those that are too large. Nipples can be stretched as a result of breast enlargement surgery with breast implants, but this may not improve the proportion of nipple to breast. Sometimes micropigmentation (cosmetic tattooing) can be used to improve the apparent size of the nipple, but this rarely yields really good results.
If you feel uncomfortable with the size or shape of your nipples, we can put you in touch with a plastic surgeon in your area who performs nipple reshaping procedures.