Introduction While many women consider breast enhancement procedures like breast augmentation, breast reduction, and breast lift, there are others who look for ways to reduce their nipples. If your nipples are very large and protruding and it is negatively affecting your self-esteem or is creating discomfort for you, you may undergo nipple reduction surgery. Nipple reduction is an aesthetic procedure that is used to decrease the size of large nipples. The procedure may also involve contouring the nipple so it can appear balanced and aesthetically appealing. Many of the patients who seek this surgery are either embarrassed of their large nipples or experience emotional pain. What does nipple reduction surgery involve? The nipple reduction procedure starts with the placement of tiny incisions on the nipple, with the goal to excise the surplus tissue. After the removal of excess tissue, the surgeon will use stitches to close the incisions and the nipples will be dressed to keep them safe during the recovery period. In most patients, the procedure is performed under local anesthesia; however, if needed, general anesthesia may also be used. Nipple reduction surgery is normally performed within 1 hour and is an outpatient procedure. If your health remains stable after the surgery, you may be allowed to go home after a few hours. The good news is that the incisions are very small and will heal fairly quickly. After the procedure, you’ll be required to wear a special bra so your breasts are properly positioned and held intact. The bra will also help your breasts heal properly and quickly. Additional considerations Patients should keep in mind that there are two options when it comes to nipple reduction: decreasing the size of the nipple alone and reducing the size of the nipple and the areola. In most cases, patients experienced enlarged nipple and enlarged areola at the same time. If you have both conditions, you should seek treatment for both. The nipples appear aesthetically unappealing when they exhibit excessive protrusion and become wide or asymmetrical. On the other hand, the areola may expand and become very large. It may also change symmetry, become domed, or rise from the skin. This will make them aesthetically unwelcoming. During your consultation with a plastic surgeon, be sure to ask the doctor to examine both your nipple and areola. If early signs of aesthetic flaws have settled in both the areola and nipples, you should get them both treated in a single surgical session. It is worth noting that apart from the decrease in self-esteem, many patients who have large nipples find it hard to wear swimwear and T-shirts. This holds true for both men and women. Many patients are so embarrassed that they avoid swimming, going topless, and even having times of intimacy. For this reason, some patients use paddings under their shirts to hide their nipples. When it comes to males, large nipples are a serious issue because it negatively affects their masculinity. As a result of enlarged nipples, even men avoid going topless and being confident while swimming or during intimacy. The good news is that nipple reduction surgery is very effective when it comes to getting rid of enlarged nipples and areolas. After the procedure, your nipples will appear normal and aesthetically appealing. Candidacy for nipple reduction surgery In order to qualify for nipple reduction surgery, you should be in good overall health. If you are suffering from serious health problems like diabetes or blood disorder, be sure to bring this to the knowledge of your doctor during the initial consultation. Furthermore, you must have realistic goals and expectations. There is no doubt that the surgery will improve your nipples; however, there may be certain things out of the surgeon’s control. You cannot expect your nipples to be like that of a teenage girl if you are in your 60s and undergoing nipple reduction. Also, you should defer your plan of nipple reduction if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. In fact, you’ll be advised to wait for at least 5-6 months for your nipples to stabilize after childbirth to be considered for nipple reduction. In some situations, nipple reduction is undertaken as a see-and-treat-the-case, meaning you may have your surgery right after consultation. The procedure is relatively straightforward, and the risks are not as serious. The good news is that advancements in plastic surgery technologies and techniques have made it safer and better. What are the risks related to nipple reduction? There are a number of risks associated with nipple reduction. However, the risks are lower in number and intensity as compared to other major operations like breast enhancement procedures. The common risks of nipple reduction include bleeding infection, swelling, bruising, and nipple asymmetry. The rare risks include a change in or loss of nipple sensation, inability to nurse your baby, and numbness in the nipples. In order to be on the safe side, be sure to tell your surgeon any health conditions you might be suffering from. It is also important to share your medication history with the doctor so that precautionary measures can be taken during the operation. During the consultation, you must ask your surgeon to explain the risks and potential complications of nipple reduction to you. You should go for the surgery only if you’re sure that the risks are lower than the benefits of the operation. Conclusion If your nipples are excessively protruding and enlarged or poorly shaped, they can be decreased in size and enhanced with the help of a plastic surgery procedure called nipple reduction. The procedure is quite simple and involves relatively lower risks. During the surgery, the plastic surgeon will place tiny incisions on your nipples and remove the excess tissue. This will result in decreased nipple size. In order to get better and safer outcomes with nipple reduction, you should make sure to have the surgery performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon only.