In modern society’s quest for perfection, cosmetic surgery emerges the victor. The rewards of cosmetic surgery are beauty, youth, and vigor – a modern Fountain of Youth that can be hard to ignore. Yet cosmetic surgery does present significant risks and obstacles that cannot be ignored. Only by weighing the benefits and risks of cosmetic surgery can you determine if the procedure is the right decision for you.
Since cosmetic surgery reshapes the natural contours of the body, it can improve those areas that the individual finds unattractive or undesirable. Cosmetic surgery can reduce signs of aging, thereby enhancing the individual’s natural beauty and lending to a more vibrant, youthful appearance. It can also repair damage caused by trauma, illness, infection, developmental abnormalities, or heredity.
Since the desirable result of cosmetic surgery is a more attractive appearance, successful surgeries can have a strong positive effect on an individual’s psychological health. Enhanced beauty can elevate self-esteem, increase a patient’s sense of self-confidence, and combat depression. Many individuals will find that they feel more comfortable in the company of others after cosmetic surgery. Still others feel their improved appearance helps them conform to the standard of beauty and vitality expected of them, thereby elevating their status in society.
First off, cosmetic surgery is an expensive endeavor that can present a financial hardship for many patients. Many single procedures come with price tags well into the thousands of dollars, and those individuals desiring multiple surgical procedures will easily find themselves with medical bills that far exceed the average worker’s yearly income.
Also consider that cosmetic surgery is an invasive procedure that seeks to reshape the natural contours of the body. Surgeons must cut, bend, stretch, chisel, poke, and otherwise forcibly manipulate structures of the body into the desired shape in order for the procedure to be a success. This causes undue stress on the body resulting in pain and discomfort, bruising, swelling, and stiffness. The recovery period from cosmetic surgery can be lengthy for some procedures, lasting up to several months. Many procedures, though relatively safe, have the potential for serious complications that may even be permanent in nature. Side-effects such as nerve damage, scarring, infection, and chronic pain may result if a surgery does not go smoothly.
Patients must frequently take time away from normal activities for the surgery and subsequent recovery period. This means that patients may have to take time off from work or school and avoid favorite activities such as sports and playing with their kids during the initial recovery period. Many patients also find that they need assistance for a few days after the surgery to help them get around and take care of daily activities.
Finally, it is important to remember that the desired results cannot be guaranteed. The potential exists that the surgery will not produce the “ideal” look the patient was seeking in spite of the surgeon’s best efforts. Cosmetic surgery is not an exact science, so potential patients need to keep in mind that there is no way to know what the final outcome will look like until the procedure has been performed and the recovery period has passed.