Everything You Want to Know Before Having Plastic Surgery
In 2018, 1.8 million cosmetic plastic surgeries were performed. Googling terms such as “plastic surgery San Diego” or “best plastic surgery facilities” can bring up thousands of search results. Making it extremely hard to know which surgeon or facility to use.
In this guide, we will discuss everything you need to know about finding the best plastic surgeon in your area, as well as the most commonly asked questions about having plastic surgery.
Cosmetic Surgery 101: 7 factors you NEED to consider
Plastic surgery is a BIG decision. it’s important to know what you’re getting into. Below are 7 factors that you should consider before having plastic surgery.
#1 Is my surgeon qualified?
Does your surgeon have the expertise to safely perform your desired procedure?
DO NOT allow someone under-qualified for the procedure you choose. Verify that your surgeon is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and has hospital privileges. Is your surgeon an experienced surgeon or specialist – somebody who has experience performing the type of surgery you are considering with verified results.
#2 What are the health risks associated with the surgery?
As with any medical procedure, there are possible risks with plastic surgery. Some of the potential risks after any surgical procedure include the potential for bleeding, hematoma, seroma, infections, poor healing, and scar formation. You should make sure your body is healthy enough to undergo the procedure. It is important for the surgeon to complete an appropriate medical evaluation to minimize any risks and be experienced to take care of any potential complications should they arise. You should also make sure that you can properly follow all recommendations leading up to the procedure and can comply with recovery instructions from your doctor.
#3 How long will the results last?
Although there is a definite long lasting improvement, it depends on many factors – from your skin type and condition to the procedure you have chosen.
For example, facial plastic surgery (like a facelift) can last from eight to 10 years depending on the patient’s skin resiliency. Alternatively, breast implants don’t technically expire, but it is recommended that the patients get them replaced every 10 years. Other procedures, like BOTOX injections, can last about 4 months. Long term upkeep is different for everyone.
#4 How much can I reasonably spend on this procedure?
Nobody knows your financial situation better than you! It is important to discuss how much your procedure will cost…and if you can afford it! The cost of the surgery will also partly be dependent on your surgeon’s experience and level of training. DO NOT choose your surgeon based on price. For a list of ballpark pricing for different procedures, check out plastic surgery San Diego prices here.
#5 How long is the recovery and what is the process?
Again, this will depend on the type of cosmetic surgery you have selected. It may take only a few days to recover from a liposuction treatment while a tummy-tuck can take up to three to six weeks to fully recover. Some procedure recoveries will require you to stay home while you may be able to return to work shortly after others. Regardless of how long it will take, be sure you are prepared to be a good patient and follow the doctor’s recommendations.
#6 Am I in the right frame of mind to have this procedure?
Now is the time to do some soul searching. Ask yourself:
- Why am I doing this?
- Who am I doing this for?
- Do I want to change my body like this?
Make sure you’re making the changes for YOU, not someone else and for the right reasons.
#7 What is my end goal?
Similar to question six, you should have a clear vision in mind of what you’re hoping to achieve. This vision should not just be aesthetic; you should be thinking about what your life will look like after the procedure. Are you an athlete? Think about how a breast augmentation may change your athletic ability. Also, be prepared that the surgery may not come out exactly how you pictured it. Everyone’s body heals differently; procedures may look different on your body type than what you expected. It may be helpful to look through a photo gallery of different procedures to see what the final results look like.
Once you’ve decided that plastic surgery will help build your confidence, it’s time to decide which procedure is the best fit for your needs.
Which procedure is right for me?
Decoding the lingo from ‘tummy tuck’ to ‘mommy makeover’ and everything in between. Cosmetic surgeries often go by popular names, but the actual procedure may be called something different.
Plastic surgery falls into two major categories: Nonsurgical and Surgical.
Nonsurgical procedures are often smaller office procedures and require minimal recovery times. They require little to no anesthesia including topical anesthetic. Here is a list of some of the more common nonsurgical procedures:
- Wrinkle Treatments: To get rid of facial lines, like crow’s feet a neuromodulator such as BOTOX is a popular procedure. BOTOX has been used for decades. It’s injected into the muscle, causing them to relax and wrinkles to diminish or vanish.
- Facial Fillers: For an overall younger facial appearance without surgery, facial fillers are a new advancement in modern medicine. These injections come under a variety of names; common ones are Juvederm, Restylane, and Sculptra among others and some are made of hyaluronic acid. Another very popular option is fat harvested from the patient and injected into the desired area..
- Lasers and Skin Rejuvenation: Laser treatments can be used for a variety of treatments, including hair removal, treating wrinkles and tightening and resurfacing of the skin. Two popular laser systems with multi modality capabilities are the Sciton laser system, and the Cutera system.
Many other nonsurgical procedures are available. Learn more about all the options here.
There are a variety of surgical procedures to help you get the look you’ve always wanted.
- Facial Procedures: For an overall rejuvenation, a facelift is a popular option to create a younger look. A neck lift can firm and lift sagging neck skin for a youthful appearance. Rhinoplasty is a nose reshaping procedure. It is one of the most complex plastic surgeries but can also be one of the most rewarding if you are unhappy with your natural nose shape. Eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, can help to reduce droopiness to restore a less tired, natural look. Mentoplasty (chin surgery) can help to balance your face, providing a more symmetrical look.
- Breast Procedures: Breast Augmentation can be used to adjust the size or shape of the breast. As we age, it is natural for breasts to start to droop – a breast lift can reverse the sag and restore them to their perky glory. If your breasts are too large, heavy, and cumbersome, a breast reduction can reduce the size to make them lighter and more manageable.
- Body Procedures: Virtually any part of your body can be changed to help you feel more comfortable and confident in your appearance. If your abdominal area has excess skin and fat or has lost its shape or tightness, then a tummy tuck (or abdominoplasty) may help you. This process removes excess skin and fat tissue from the area while simultaneously tightening weakened muscles. If you have unwanted fat, liposuction can remove the cells straight from the source. This body contouring process can target specific fat stores that may be unreactive to diet or exercise. A mommy makeover can address a variety of spots that may have been affected by childbirth. A Brazilian butt lift combines fat grafting and liposuction to create a full, feminine buttock.
Procedures by Condition
Click here to view a list of conditions and cosmetic surgery to correct them. From acne scars to cellulite, unwanted hair, sagging skin, there are many procedures to correct your issue.
Tips to Find the Best Plastic Surgeon Near Me
Is this Surgeon right for me?
Once you’ve picked your procedure, it’s time to decide who is going to perform the procedure.
- Experience: Surgical procedures are complex. Select a surgeon who is well qualified and experienced in that procedure. Make sure they are board certified. Additionally, be sure the surgical team, from the anesthesiologists to aesthetic nurses are also certified and experienced.
- Procedure types: Make sure that your surgeon or office offers the specific procedure you’re looking for. After reading this, you’re an expert on the types, so don’t be afraid to ask for your procedure by name!
- Affordability: No ifs, and, or buts – don’t get a budget butt lift! Likewise, don’t overpay for your procedure either. Do some research on your own and compare the prices of different surgeons in your area but make sure to consider their training and experience . Occasionally, insurance may cover your selected procedure, so it’s a good idea to check!
- Facility: Is the location adequate for your needs? Is it certified by a well known accrediting agency and do they have all the appropriate safety equipment.
- Philosophy: Does your surgeon have views that are compatible with yours? A surgeon who listens to your needs and offers options and suggestions as opposed to only their view.
I’ve Found the Surgeon – Now What?
13 questions to ask your surgical team before electing to undergo surgery. Don’t go into your consultation blind. Have some questions ready to ask your plastic surgeon.
- Am I a good candidate for this procedure? Why or why not? Ask specifics! Be sure to be open with your surgeon about any issues, pre-existing conditions or medications you are on.
- Are there treatments other than surgery that might work just as well or better for me? Know what the various treatment options are.
- How many times have you done this procedure? What were the results? Again, make sure your team is experienced. Additionally, were their patients happy with their results.
- Can you share before and after photos of this procedure? This can give you some idea of what to expect as well as sometimes communicate your likes and dislikes.
- Where is your office and surgical center located? Where will the surgical procedure be done and where will the follow up appointments be? Is the surgical facility on or off site? Is Valet parking available if needed?
- Is this a one or multiple procedure process? Some procedures require multiple visits. Make sure you’re prepared for that and can keep up with your treatments.
- What are the surgical options? What are the pros and cons of each? There may be multiple surgery options for your procedure. Less invasive procedures may be tempting, but they also may not give as dramatic of a result. Talk these options through with your cosmetic surgeon.
- Will the results be permanent? It’s important to be aware of the upkeep of your procedure, and if you’re willing to commit your time and your finances to this process.
- What type of anesthetic will be used? How will it affect me? Who will provide the anesthesia? Is it by a board certified physician anesthesiologists? If you’ve never had surgery before, it’s helpful to talk through the process of anesthesia.
- Will I be hospitalized? If so, for how long? Is it an in and out procedure or does it require a hospital stay? This is important to know for work and other obligations you may have.
- What are the possible complications? And be thinking about if any complications do occur, is your surgeon qualified to treat them? Does he or she have hospital privileges to admit you should the need arise?
- How will my progress be monitored after surgery? What follow-up care will I need? How long of a recovery period can I expect? Think about if you’re willing to commit to the answers you’re given.
- How much will the procedure cost? Are various payment and financing methods offered?
Frequently Asked Questions About Plastic Surgery
- How do I prepare for a plastic surgery consultation? You may want to ask if you should do anything before arriving for a consult. For example if you have photos of your likes or dislikes, bring them with you to your consultation.
- How many procedures can be done at once? This depends on the procedures. A mommy makeover for example can address multiple areas such as the breasts and abdomen. Sometimes, it may be beneficial to perform the surgeries at different times to decrease the length of each procedure as well as for easier recovery.
- Do plastic surgeons get plastic surgery? Just like everyone else, Plastic surgeons also consider getting plastic surgery or getting various treatments to improve certain aspects of their bodies.
- Is breast lift surgery dangerous? All surgeries have some amount of risk. An experienced team will ensure that your surgery is as smooth and safe as possible.
- Does plastic surgery hurt? You’ll likely be under anesthesia for the procedure, so you won’t feel a thing! Recovery may have some discomfort, but your surgeon can help you with pain management recommendations.
- How many facelifts can you have in a lifetime? There is no one answer to this. In reality, you can have as many as you want, but your facial structure, quality and thickness of the skin and underlying tissues, as well as the tendency for looseness of the skin have a lot to do with it. You do not want to look overdone or look unnatural. Typically, a facelift can last 5-10 years and other procedures may be done to improve certain features as time goes on.
- What is the age limit for plastic surgery? There is no age limit, provided you are healthy to undergo surgery.
- What are the negative effects of plastic surgery? Like any surgical procedure, there is a recovery period including some initial discomfort and adjustment. Your surgical team will walk you through the entire process.
- Does plastic surgery leave scars? Most procedures will not leave noticeable or unsightly scars. Incisions are planned and placed in areas so as to minimize this. Scars do take time to mature and generally look better with time.
- How can I finance plastic surgery? There are a variety of ways to pay for your surgery. The surgical coordinator can give you sources and assist with this.
- How long does a surgery consultation take? This depends on the procedure requested. A breast augmentation consultation may take up to one and an half hours, while a BOTOX consultation may take 10-15 minutes. There needs to be ample time for the surgeon to do a full evaluation as well as for the staff to provide ample useful information and detail.
How long after consultation is the surgery? Again, this varies by procedure. BOTOX or fillers may be done on the same day while surgical procedures need to be scheduled in advance as there is a pre operative preparation, usually up to two weeks before the actual surgery.