Whether you want to change the impact of lockdown on your appearance or you’re simply caressing the idea of having subtle tweaks, rather than any major changes in your body, nowadays there are plenty of options for late bloomers who want to improve their look without feeling the pressure of social judgements.
Cosmetic surgery has evolved significantly over the past few years, stepping away from dramatic surgical procedures of the ’80s, and now – as coronavirus restrictions have eased – demand for aesthetic treatments is increasing.
Amongst the most requested tweaks from gen x women are minimally or non-invasive body sculpting procedures—such as SmartLipo, BodyTite, and CoolSculpting, treatments that use lasers, radiofrequency, and electromagnetic waves to eliminate fat without having to undergo surgery and PRP, also known as Platelet Rich Plasma, a non-surgical procedure that uses the healing power of our own blood to regenerate skin and encourage new collagen. Lip lifts and facelifts (that target sagging skin and wrinkles on the lower half of the face) are also popular amongst women over 40.
Natural-looking tweaks might sound like a contradiction, but that’s what more and more of us are looking for – it’s about enhancement, not alteration. However, even though looking and feeling good is for many of us very important, before undergoing a cosmetic procedure is always very important to take the time to consider whether the treatment is really necessary as well as choose a trusted professional to avoid any regrets.
But what makes a good cosmetic surgeon? Ideally someone with a proven track record plus the prerequisite qualifications to perform the specific surgery that you are interested in undergoing.
Although there is nothing to be ashamed of when seeking treatment, it is important not to rush into anything, and wait for a sufficient amount of time to weigh up whether it is the best option for you- explains leading cosmetic surgeon and CMO of Uvence, Dr Olivier Amar-. If you are still considering treatment, I would advise that you discuss this with your practitioner, as well as a close friend or family member. It is important that patients feel comfortable communicating exactly what they want to achieve.
Here are a few things to consider when you’re selecting a cosmetic surgeon.
Look for a surgeon who is board-certified
Finding a board-certified cosmetic surgeon who has plenty of experience in the procedure of choice is critical to getting the results you desire. Look for a fully qualified professional who has been accredited by the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (ABCS) if living in the US or refer to sites such as the British Association Of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) for information on trusted surgeons in the UK. Having these qualifications means that doctors have specialized training in cosmetic surgery.
Also, maintaining one’s certification means that the practitioner you choose will have to do a certain amount of ongoing education to ensure that he or she has knowledge of the most current research in their field. It is recommended to visit at least three surgeons so that you can feel really comfortable that the MD you choose is one that you feel secure and comfortable with.
Get the answers you need
Your surgeon needs to give you all the information and advice you need to feel confident to make a decision moving forward. Ideally, your practitioner should work with you to define your goals, provide you with realistic expectations for your cosmetic treatments and discuss his/her procedures with you in detail. It’s better not to trust organisations that won’t introduce you to the surgeon to discuss your case. Normally, they should be treating you holistically and take into account your full medical history before any treatments.
Be prepared to ask yourself questions like: Do I feel comfortable telling this surgeon my fears or asking questions about my procedure? Do I trust this surgeon to give me safe recommendations tailored to me? Does this surgeon have experience in the procedure I’m asking for?
Check your practitioner’s experience
Aside from substantial technical training, you can recognize a safe cosmetic surgeon with a proven track record to perform the specific surgery that you are considering. Ask your doctor questions like: How many times have you performed this operation in total? What are the possible risks, side effects and problems? What is the aftercare and recovery time?
Your cosmetic surgeon should also be able to provide you with a before and after portfolio that showcases his or her work and the range of procedures he or she is comfortable with.
Do your maths: can you afford it?
Cosmetic surgery isn’t covered by most health insurance plans. The cost varies depending on the procedure, ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars or pounds. Also, consider the cost of any follow-up care or additional corrective procedures.
Cosmetic treatments are expensive, and this is justified by their complex nature and the level of skill involved with performing such a major operation with potentially life-altering consequences.
This means that you should be prepared to pay for any initial consultations with surgeons during your research, and you should aim to meet at least two surgeons so that you can compare fees and results.
Take your time
It is essential to carefully complete all of your research and fully consider every option before committing to a treatment that could affect your physical, financial or emotional wellbeing. Even if not invasive, ask yourself: will I feel comfortable with that botox effect or a new lip shape?
Always speak to your general practitioner before having cosmetic surgery, since your doctor is best placed to help you manage your overall health. If cosmetic surgery is an option for you, your health care provider can help you to plan cosmetic surgery safely and help you find a suitable surgeon, too.