We have a tendency to be very ‘down’ on those who have had cosmetic surgery and to view it as a highly negative procedure. We say it looks ‘plastic’ and that it’s selling out on ‘who you are’ and generally frown on people who resort to it.
However the reality is that it is really the choice of the person who is having it done, and that in some cases under the right circumstances it can be a good decision that makes the person feel a lot more confident and happy with their looks. Of course it also depends on the specific case of cosmetic surgery and while some are certainly distasteful, others can look quite attractive and be subtle enough to not be highly noticeable. After all, the vast majority of celebrities that we look up to and find attractive have admitted to using some cosmetic surgery and often on a regular basis. Like anything it’s about recognising the cons and using it sparingly and carefully, but at the end of the day it is a highly personal decision that only you can make. Here we will look at some of the potential risks involves to ensure that you have a fuller understanding before you go ahead with any of the procedures. We’ll also look at some of the ways to combat the various problems associated with cosmetic surgery and how to prepare yourself for the process.
The vast range of cosmetic surgery techniques mean that the side effects and risks associated are just as varied and hard to pin down. However almost every form of cosmetic surgery carries with it some risk of things going wrong to some extent. With something like botox this can be more serious and there are many ‘horror stories’ of people who have become seriously ill or even died after a botox injection. Botox is after all a toxin that would be highly lethal if ingested. By injecting it into your face you are actually paralysing the muscles and so it’s not hard to imagine how something could go wrong.
Liposuction methods have also in some cases had serious side effects and can be potentially lethal but only really for those who attempt to have too many fat cells removed in a single sitting. Of course any surgery that involves going under the knife such as rhinoplasty or other facial restructuring, or a ‘tuck’, is always going to carry an element of risk. This is firstly because there is of course knives involved and accidents do happen, but also because it involves anaesthetic and this can cause different reactions depending on the patient. In the case of rhinoplasty in particular you will have your nose physically chiselled away while your skin is peeled back – and this of course could conceivably result in the chisel ‘slipping’.
Similarly any procedure involving the cheek bone is also highly risky due to its being attached to the eye socket. Of course you tend to only hear the ‘horror stories’ of things going wrong, and this can make it seem like cosmetic surgery is all highly dangerous. The reality is quite different and the chances of things going wrong are relatively slim – or obviously no one would use the techniques. It is important however to always ensure that you fully understand the procedure and the risks involved before you put yourself up for a procedure.
You also need to consider of course the possibility of it going wrong not in terms of your health, but in terms of your looks – and there is always a chance that you may be unhappy with the way your surgery turns out. This can be highly distressing and while it may be reversible it won’t be possible to get your ‘original’ look back completely in some cases. Be very careful then when getting irreversible procedures and be sure to use the very best specialists when you do.
You also need to find out about the side effects and the ‘down time’ associated with your specific type of surgery. Here even if your procedure goes smoothly you may find you are unhappy with the resulting discomfort. Again this will vary and procedures involving an injection such as botox will tend to be fairly quick with very minimal down time, while something like a tuck will result in a lot of bruising and pain. The other side effect of botox however is how it effects your ability to emote and as it paralyses the facial muscles this can cause your face to be frozen in a particular expression – if used excessively then this can cause you to look odd and unnatural – but at least with botox and similar procedures the effects will wear off after a short period of time.
More serious are the permanent side effects such as scarring that can occur as a result of some cosmetic procedures. With something like a tummy tuck for instance or breast augmentation, you will need to have a large incision made in your skin which will mean you have a large cut that turns into a scar. In some cases this can be more unpleasant for you than the initial problem so you need to find out precisely what lasting marks if any the procedure might incur. If you are unhappy with that then there are some ways you can avoid such severe scarring – by using liposuction rather than a tuck for instance, or by using slightly different methods – for instance having an incision in your belly button rather than under your breasts if you want to have implants which is more painful but doesn’t leave any noticeable scar.
Of course there are also some psychological issues associated with plastic surgery and these can be highly distressing depending on your disposition and your previous psychological stability. For instance some people will find that immediately following forms of cosmetic surgery they then want to return to their ‘own’ look and don’t like having someone different look back at them. This is why it is highly important to ensure that you are confident you want the procedure and that you are prepared for the consequences. It can also be a good idea to try getting less permanent forms of cosmetic surgery such as botox to see how you feel about changes to your face.
Another concern that can come from cosmetic surgery is that you have a foreign object as a part of you, which is the case if you have dental implants or breast implants. Many people struggle with the implications this can have for their identity and feel like it’s not all ‘them’ any more. One way around this is to avoid getting foreign objects as implants such as in the case of ‘natural breast augmentation’ which uses your own fat resourced from other areas using liposuction to increase the size of your breasts. This technique then means that there is no part of you that is no longer ‘you’ as it is all your own tissue. As your breasts are made mostly of fat anyway this can be a lot easier to come to terms with and leave you feeling a lot better about yourself.
Finally there is a danger that plastic surgery can be addictive and that you will end up getting more and more procedures and not being happy with the way you look. This can sometimes occur alongside an inability to view yourself objectively in what is called ‘body dysmorphia’ – which is likely what Michael Jackson suffered with. Anyone who has had botox will describe it as addictive as you enjoy the results and the ease with which they’re possible. As such it is important to use cosmetic techniques only for things you are very serious about and to always listen to the advice as friends. Try not to view cosmetic procedures as something you do on a whim, but as an important and big decision each time. Ask yourself if you really need it and whether you are truly unhappy with the way you currently look.