Should I Get Cosmetic Surgery?

i am really unsure about whether i should be getting cosmetic surgery. its not a money thing. its really just emotional. lots of women i know are happy but i am stuck...not making up my mind. advice?

Doctor Answers 3

Cosmetic surgery can be a great benefit for the right...

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Cosmetic surgery can be a great benefit for the right person. Typically, the "right" person is one who is physically and mentally healthy and has a well-balanced life and is generally happy. There may be an area of the body or face that they wish might be better but they could live happily with or without the change.

The "wrong" person for cosmetic surgery is one who has unrealistic expectations, is too perfectionistic, is more negative than positive in their outlook, is expecting to change their lives (relationships or work) by having surgery, and has no support group or a negative support group around them during their recovery.

Another significant difference lies between the person who always liked themselves before but wants to improve an area that has aged or changed. This is very different from the patient who says "I have always hated my _______." The latter patient rarely learns to like an area they have practiced disliking for many years.

Electing to have cosmetic surgery is a very personal...

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Electing to have cosmetic surgery is a very personal choice, and is not for everyone. When patients look in the mirror and think they look older than they feel and are highly motivated to look their best then they are most likely a good candidate for surgery.

It is important the patient has a balanced lifestyle, good expectations and understanding of the procedure.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

1. You wish to improve your appearance because: your...

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1. You wish to improve your appearance because: your mirror is demonstrating signs of aging: baggy eyes, jowls, double chin, wrinkled face, sagging breasts, jodhpur hips.

2. Certain physical features are unsatisfying to you: prominent nose, receding chin, low eyebrows, small breasts, disproportionately large breasts, over-plump buttocks, flanks or hips, or flank fat rolls that defy diet and exercise, wrinkled skin, jowls, sagging neck, double chin.

3. You are a mother of three, and your breasts and tummy sag despite a vigorous workout schedule.

4. Your lips are thin.

5. Your upper eyelids droop, but you are not necessarily tired.

Comment: Numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 represent valid indications for cosmetic surgery.

6. You are unhappy with your social life and believe a new look can invigorate it.

7. You are recently divorced and anxious to “hook up” with someone and are convinced a new look will enhance your prospects.

8. You are overweight and hope liposuctionwill give you a “quick fix.”

Comment: Numbers 6, 7 and 8 deal with issues for which cosmetic surgery is not a satisfactory answer.

9. You are in the entertainment world. You are not getting the roles you want and think cosmetic surgery will help.

10. You are a model and your agent suggests that “you are great, but your nose is too big.”

11. Your career is stagnant. Your occupation is populated by younger people and you sense there is a career advantage to looking younger and not shopworn.

Comment: Numbers 9, 10 and 11 require some additional thought and explanation. Number 9 deals with people seeking certain roles in the entertainment world. What you have to ask yourself, your agent and the people with whom you interact, is whether or not it is realistic to expect that more parts will be available to you if certain features are changed. The same logic applies to Number 10. Often, casting directors and modeling agency directors cannot be certain that a change in a physical feature will assure further work assignments.

Comment: Number 11 is the most intriguing. It is a fact that an employer may choose the more youthful and energetic-looking candidate for a specific position. Certainly, experience is to be valued, but unfortunately experience alone may not be enough. The combination of a youthful appearance plus experience is ideal.

12. Your five-year-old tells you your nose is too big.

13. You are a 15-year-old young lady and your grandmother keeps asking you: “When are you going to go see a cosmetic surgeon about your nose?”

Comment: Numbers 12 and 13 deal with the opinions others have of your physical features. Their opinions are not important; what is important is your opinion. Make the decision for yourself, for reasons that are important to you and not to satisfy someone else.

14. You are 69 years old. You have had three facelifts, two eyelid surgeries and a chemical skin peel. Your friends and family tell you “you look terrific.” A movie theater cashier demands Medicare card or proof of age when you request a senior discount. But at cocktail parties, you accost a cosmetic surgeon and obsess about “these lines around my eyes.”

Comment: Number 14 deals with a common scenario: people become obsessed and focus on the barely visible and/or unimportant. What counts is the total appearance. A line or two here does not make for an aged face. No go.

15. You are a high-profile media personality and your face is recognized by millions of people. You have had so much cosmetic facial surgery you are developing a strange, monkey-like look. Yet, you “want more.”

Comment: Number 15 is a reminder that there is a pool of quicksand that awaits those who seek to go beyond a reasonable cosmetic surgery expectation. I don’t have to remind you of the celebrities who unfortunately fell into that quicksand and never got their faces out. The above are common and classic consultation comments. All have been excerpted from actual consultations. Which of these 15 scenarios match your motivations and desires? Which are healthy? Which are unwise and potentially risky?

Robert Kotler, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 90 reviews

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These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.