Cosmetic Surgery:Is It For You?

By: Marcus Landauer

If you thought cosmetic surgery was reserved for Hollywood stars, you're out of sync with the times. Nowadays it's become a surprisingly affordable lifestyle choice for people from all walks of life. Here's a look at some of the more common cosmetic procedures to help you decide if cosmetic surgery is for you.

Essentially, cosmetic surgery is a surgical procedure carried out to improve a person's appearance. As such, it can be applied to any part of your body. But the most common are the various regions of the face, the breasts and the waist. Let's look at each in turn.

The most famous facial surgery procedure is the facelift (rhytidectomy). The objective is to tighten up skin and smooth out the lines and wrinkles that time etches on your face. The end result is a more youthful appearance.

The second most common is the nose job (rhinoplasty). This works to bring balance to the face by changing the shape of your nose, by making it wider or narrower, for example. It's also used to remove bumps in the nose.

Then there's eye enhancement. This procedure centres on removing unsightly bags under the eyes.

Lesser known is ear surgery. This is for people who feel their ears are too prominent. The operation adjusts the shape of the ear cartilage so that the ear lies closer to the head.

Next is breast surgery which involves altering the size and/or position of the female breast. The most sought after procedure is breast enlargement which is achieved through implants. Another popular procedure is the uplift which corrects sagging breasts. Finally there's breast reduction for women who suffer from back or shoulder pain due to excessive breast weight.

Finally, body surgery involves ways to improve the shape of the body, particularly the waist. The two most popular procedures here are tummy tucks and liposuction. The tummy tuck involves removing folds of overhanging skin and fatty tissue from around the midriff to give that smooth, tight, youthful look. For moderate weight reduction, liposuction is available. This involves the selective removal of fat cells by vacuum suction through a small metal tube inserted into the affected areas.

These are the most popular cosmetic surgery procedures. But in addition to the above, there are also more specialized procedures such as weight loss surgery, cosmetic surgery for men and anti-aging cosmetic surgery. Your surgeon can give you details of these.

In deciding whether to go ahead with cosmetic surgery, the first step is to consult a surgeon to determine whether you are a suitable candidate. The surgeon will take many factors into account such as your age, state of health, skin texture, bone structure and healing ability. Though most cosmetic surgery procedures are safe and carried out under local anaesthetic, there are risks involved and your surgeon will make you aware of them.

Another key factor is how realistic your expectations are about the results of your surgery. If you're expecting to be transformed into a clone of Julia Roberts, you're probably setting yourself up for disappointment. Results tend to be subtle rather than transformational and it's important to remember this. However, they can be life changing too.

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Marcus Landauer is an expert consultant with over 12 years experience in plastic surgery and cosmetic surgery.

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