When Plastic Surgery Won’t Cut It Submitted by Twin City Plastic Surgery
August 02, 2017
Most people have physical traits they aren’t happy with. A nose that’s too big, breasts that are too small, a muffin top that won’t go away, skin that has too many wrinkles, and the list goes on.
People generally come to accept their “less than perfect” features as part of who they are and what makes them unique. They may compensate by skillfully applying makeup, or investing in a good pushup bra, or perhaps checking out the latest Spanx apparel, but such perceived “flaws” don’t significantly impact their day-to-day life. Some people may seek plastic or cosmetic surgical procedures to improve an aspect of their body that bothers them a lot. Improvements in body image are not just about vanity. If individuals really feel self-conscious about their body, their self-image and self-esteem can suffer, which can negatively affect many aspects of their life. People simply feel better and have more confidence when they are happy with their appearance.
There are some people who seek plastic or cosmetic surgery for all the wrong reasons, which will only lead to disappointment and will likely cause self-esteem and self-image to plummet even lower! Therefore, it is extremely important for plastic surgeons to conduct a thorough consultation to make sure that a patient will benefit from whatever procedure they are wanting done. At Twin City Plastic Surgery, the most common wrong reasons we encounter are the following:
- Having unrealistic expectations. Plastic surgery can most certainly increase self-esteem and confidence, but plastic surgery will not solve the problems or challenges that a person may be having in their life.
- Seeking plastic surgery while in an emotional crisis. Divorce, marital problems, loss of a loved one, or loss of a job can cause a person’s mental outlook to be unstable. It’s better to allow some time for emotional healing to occur before committing to a big decision like plastic surgery.
- Having a procedure to please someone else. Plastic surgery should only be done because it is something that you truly want to do. It’s fine to ask for others’ opinions about your decision, but surgery should never be done because someone else is pushing you.
There is also a psychological disorder called Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) that plastic surgeons occasionally encounter. Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), also known as “imagined ugliness,” is a chronic mental illness where perceived flaws in appearance lead to personal or social impairment and significant distress. A person suffering from BDD will constantly obsess about a flaw, either minor or imagined, and are unable to accomplish much else. It’s common for men and women with BDD to seek plastic surgery or other cosmetic corrective procedures to “fix” the problem. However, these individuals will never be satisfied with the outcome, often resulting in additional procedures.
There are several telltale signs that a patient seeking plastic surgery is suffering from BDD. During initial consultations, plastic surgeons look for the following indicators:
- History of excessive requests for corrective or plastic surgery
- Dissatisfaction with previous surgeries
- Preoccupation with one minor or imagined flaw
- Expectations surgery will solve problems
- History of mental health
- Unusual motivation for surgery
- Demanding behaviors
Instead of plastic surgery, it is crucial that patients with BDD seek help from a mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist or psychologist. Identifying patients who are seeking plastic surgery for the wrong reasons is imperative as surgery will not help and may, in fact, cause more emotional harm.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, good candidates for plastic surgery include people with a strong self-image who are bothered by a physical characteristic that they'd like to improve or change, or patients who have a physical defect or cosmetic flaw that has diminished their self-esteem over time. Just as a plastic surgeon must have the knowledge and skill to perform various procedures, they must also be able to determine when it is not in a patient’s best interest and guide them accordingly.
Board-certified plastic surgeons Laura C. Randolph, Chad Tattini, and Paige Holt, along with their professional and compassionate staff, comprise Twin City Plastic Surgery. Their Bloomington office is located at 2502 East Empire Street, Suite C, which is one mile east of Veterans Parkway, turning on to Audie Murphy Drive. More information on their practice, surgical options, and their consultation services is available by calling their office at 309-662-6772 or visiting online at www.twincityplasticsurgery.com.
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