Various forms of cosmetic surgery exist today. All have the aim of altering the physical appearance of an individual. An implicit – sometimes explicit – part of this alteration, change or transformation is the individual’s image of themselves as well; not only how they see themselves, but how they see themselves seen by the people around them. For this reason, there are two elements at stake in cosmetic surgery: the physical and the psychological.
Valid advertisements of cosmetic surgery do not represent themselves as the be all and end all. They allow the individual to understand that it’s a complex process with many factors to consider. Even a simple goal like having a smoother stomach, can become complicated by the various procedures available.
Even then, the range of techniques. In the end, a consultation is always recommended, with a review of the various options available. As well, the attendant risks. What follows is an attempt to acquaint the reader with some of the issues regarding the procedures available. It does not explore what – if any – legal restrictions there may be depending upon where the procedure is done. For example, in Canada, there are can be regulations regarding the use of silicone in prosthetic devices, namely breast implants. The reader should also try to acquaint themselves with whatever follow-up or check-ups are necessary after the fact.
General vs. local anesthetic
If a general anesthetic is used, it is usually performed in a hospital setting. There are certain risks associated with any kind of procedure involving a general anesthetic. Regardless, a hospital stay is normally required. In contrast, a local anesthetic usually carries fewer risks and hospitalization is not required.
In-patient vs. out-patient
For the in-patient, a hospital stay is in part meant to ensure that any potential complications that can arise from the procedure can be dealth with immediately. As well, the individual will likely require a certain amount of rest and recovery in a hospital setting. In contrast, the out-patient can go home after the procedure should no complications arise. Regardless, having a qualified physician performing the procedure in a sterile, controlled setting is critical.
The health of the individual
The individual should be in good general health. Procedures like liposuction and tummy tucks are not meant for the purpose of weight loss as much as what’s known as body contouring. Also, pregnancy can be a factor in precluding one from most procedures.
What you should avoid
- Smoking a few weeks before and after the procedure. This is because smoking affects the blood’s circulation and can hamper the body’s ability to heal.
- Excessive exercise, dieting and heavy physical acitivity after the procedure. Again, this can affect the individual’s ability to recover. The former two should also be avoided prior to the procedure.
- Certain types of medication can also seriously affect your ability to recover. For example, anticoagulants should be avoided if undergoing liposuction.