Dr. Bashioum Comments on Melissa’s Blog

After reading Melissa’s account of her decision to have breast enlargement surgery, I’m reminded of  the personal nature of her experience.   All  of us have sensitivities about our physical appearance.   Think of all the  services we consider outside cosmetic surgery.   Hair is cut, colored and permed, teeth are straightened and whitened, tattoos and piercings are applied, unwanted hair is waxed, and the facial appearance is altered with make up.   Clearly these are all personal choices, which some of us choose to do in an effort to correct our perceived physical defects.   Advertisers may often increase awareness of our imperfections and Hollywood decidedly equates beauty with success.

Elective cosmetic surgery is a tool in this pursuit for perfection, change or sense of well-being.   Women and men usually elect to have cosmetic surgery when some part of their body or face bothers them.     For Melissa, her concerns became acute after her third pregnancy.   My patients often recognize a sensitivity after a change in relationships (death of a spouse or divorce) or simply desire a change as a result of aging.

One of the most common questions I hear in my practice is,   “When is the right time to have cosmetic surgery?”     My answer is easy, “When something bothers you.”     As that time arrives, get all the information necessary to make the right decision for yourself.     Keep in mind the following two things.   You have plenty of time to make the decision.   There is no urgency.   Consider all the options, know what your other choices are.   Cosmetic surgery is not for everyone.

Finally, the best reason to choose cosmetic surgery is for yourself.   You might see something in your appearance that bothers you.   However, other people in your life may not see this or it may not bother them.   After all it is not their body.   Many times I hear spouses or significant others say, “That does not bother me.   Don’t do it for me.”

On rare occasion I will hear patients report that someone has said,   “You have to do this for me.”   In my opinion, this situation is not in the best interest of the patient.   It is not wise have cosmetic surgery based on pressure from friends or family.   A patient should be personally motivated to have surgery elective cosmetic surgery.

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