A close friend reveals that her refreshed appearance is really due to a facelift. Or, you overhear your neighbor telling your sister that her secret to slimming down is the 3 dimensional Vaser Liposelection. You start to wonder about getting your own metamorphosis…

As with all surgery, cosmetic surgery is an enormous step. Never do it unprepared. Having realistic expectations are key, as is finding surgeons who will talk through all the pros and cons with you and help you make an informed decision about how to achieve the goals you want.

The first step, however, is deciding whether cosmetic surgery is really right for you. It’s no use taking the leap if you’re not really ready for it. But how do you know if you are?

Ask Yourself These Questions First

Take time to think about why you want cosmetic surgery. Do you think it will change your life for the better? Are there other alternatives? Should you listen to what everyone else is telling you or trust your heart? Also, think about:

  • What do you expect to gain from this new ‘altered’ appearance? Do you hope to get a better job, find love, or have a more interesting circle of friends? Happiness is achieved, and sustained, by your frame of mind. Will a smaller nose or bigger breasts really provide you with the happiness you are searching for?
  • What are the chances that surgery will give you the appearance you want? You cannot expect to walk into an operating theatre with a body like Roseanne Barr and walk out looking like the new Miss Universe, complete with old Hollywood glamour. Is a nip and tuck going to dramatically alter the way you look?
  • Do you want to spend a significant portion of your savings? Maybe a cruise or a new boyfriend could do the trick instead?
  • Are you in crisis, obsessed with minor defects, or possibly have an untreated mental problem? And you think that cosmetic surgery can help relieve you of these woes?

Eight Signs You’re Ready For Cosmetic Surgery

If you’ve decided to go ahead and have surgery, you would be sure of the following:

  • I know what I want
    Whether you’re having a facelift, liposuction, or just a spot of Botox, being focused and definite about what you want is key.
  • I’ve done all my homework
    You know what to expect before, during, and after your procedure – nothing should surprise you.
  • I know I’ve got to keep it real
    If you’re approaching 70, don’t expect a facelift will turn you into a fresh-faced teenager again. Believe it or not, even cosmetic surgery is about making the most of what you have and keeping it real.
  • I’m doing it all for myself
    Bigger breasts won’t make your husband love you more. A slimmer tummy won’t raise your popularity statistics at the gym. It’s important to do it for you.
  • I’ve sorted out all the financial implications
    If having a breast implant means selling your house and living in a tent, maybe the time is not right yet.
  • I have a good network of support
    It’s important to have friends, family members, and colleagues who are supportive of your choices and will be there when you need them. Don’t underestimate the importance of a good support network. If you’re having surgery away from home, the ground support staff is as important especially if you’re not traveling with a support person.
  • I’m prepared to handle risks
    For any procedure, anywhere in the world, there are risks. Risks are normally part of the surgery expectations anywhere in the world, with any other surgeon. These are real and still exist.
  • I’m physically prepared
    Surgery can take its toll on you physically and mentally, so it’s imperative that while preparing your mind, to also prepare your body with a fitness program that will smoothen your recovery in every way.
  • Cosmetic surgery has been known to be life-changing, and people with the best results are those who do their research, find the right surgeon, and have realistic expectations. This decision should enhance your life, not radically change it.

In the search for happiness, cosmetic surgery is not the answer.  Cosmetic surgery can change what you look like on the outside, but it does not change who you are on the inside.  What it can do is simply match the inside to the outside.  For example, a client exercises often, but their body shape does not reflect this level of effort.  Liposuction can assist to change a body shape so that the new shape can be maintained with the current level of exercise.

Do not succumb to addiction. Plastic surgery ‘addicts’ constantly see that their body is full of defects that need correcting and will pursue this goal, sometimes to the detriment of their looks and health. Body Dysmorphic Disorder is a real disease and sufferers need professional assistance to address it.

It’s important to remember not to expect to come out looking better immediately after surgery – final results are usually revealed in months, not minutes. Sometimes, people experience post-operative depression and there are several common contributors for this:

  • Slow recovery
  • Unrealistic expectations
  • Effects of anesthesia
  • Pain management medication
  • Physical restrictions
  • Visually battered

For most people, diet and exercise can be long term programs that you can have, in addition to cosmetic surgery, giving your results more permanence, paving the way for a positive new start.

Investigate what is available to you and make sure that surgery is what you want and that you’re emotionally, financially, and physically ready for it. And when everything is in its place, your quest to look your best is just a phone call away.

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