As technology advances, the convenience and ease of access to the internet is both a blessing and a curse. With endless information so readily available to us, how do we discern fact from misinformation? In this article, we clear the air and debunk a few common myths and misunderstandings about plastic surgery.
Myth #1: Plastic surgery is done only for vanity
When most people think about the term “plastic surgery”, breast enhancements or double eyelid surgeries immediately come to mind. Plastic surgery is often stigmatized as something superficial done by vain people to enhance their looks.
Plastic surgery is actually a blanket term used to describe a surgical procedure that reconstructs, alters, or restores body parts; There are two main types of plastic surgery: reconstructive surgery and cosmetic surgery. Ptosis repair, cleft palate repair and breast reconstruction (usually following breast cancer) are all medical procedures that are categorized as plastic surgeries.
Abdominoplasty, also known as a tummy tuck, is plastic surgery procedure that sees both cosmetic and medical use. Tummy tucks are often done to remove excess fat and skin to achieve a toned look but are also performed on patients suffering from diastasis recti (abdominal muscles separation, can be caused by pregnancy or present as a birth defect) and umbilical hernias. Diastasis recti is a medical condition that affects a patient’s ability to engage in physical activities such as exercise involving core strength, abdominoplasty restores abdominal muscle function to patients.
Myth #2: Plastic surgery procedures are catered for women only
As mentioned above, plastic surgery can be done for both cosmetic and medical reasons, thus it is not a surgery that can be gatekept by gender. Many medical reconstructive plastic surgery procedures can be performed on both men and women.
While it is true that the main demographic of patients undergoing cosmetic plastic surgery skews towards women, thus, a lot of cosmetic surgeries seem to cater to the needs of women; in recent years, more and more men in Singapore and across the globe are opting for cosmetic surgeries too.
In fact, there has been a roughly 25 percent increase in non-surgical and surgical plastic surgery procedures done by men by the end of December 2020. Some procedures (medical and cosmetic) done by men include:
- Eye bags removal surgery
- Ptosis repair for droopy eyelids
- Chin implant
- Full facelift and neck lift
- Upper facelift
- Tummy tuck (abdominoplasty)
Myth #3: Only one surgical procedure can be performed at a time
When considering whether to proceed with multiple surgical procedures, costs and downtime are the main factors most people will think about.
If I want to do a ptosis correction surgery, followed by an eye bag removal surgery, how much will it cost? Can I afford to pay for the consultation, medication, and hospital facility fees twice?
If I have to spend close to a month (or multiple months for more complicated procedures) recovering from each surgery, can afford the total downtime multiple surgeries will cost me?
Despite the belief that only one plastic surgery procedure can be performed at any given time, depending on the complexity or location of the procedures, multiple procedures can be performed concurrently in a single surgery session. For example, due to the similarity between the incision site and surgical process of ptosis correction and incisional double eyelid surgery, both procedures may be done together to save on facility cost, anesthesia/medicine cost, and downtime duration.
Patients may also opt to combine multiple surgical procedures to enhance the outcome of the procedures. Let’s say you already decided to do surgical eye bag removal to maintain your looks, adding on a double eyelid surgery to the eye bag removal surgery would not only reduce the costs and total downtime, but it would also greatly enhance the appearance of the entire eye following eye bag removal.
Myth #4: Plastic surgery uses plastic and makes your features look unnatural
People tend to fixate on the “plastic” in plastic surgery. Common misconceptions and fears are that it is called “plastic” surgery as plastics are being injected into your body during the procedure, or, that the “plastic” in plastic surgery stands for the artificial and “plastic” look you will always get following a procedure.
Both of the above statements are incorrect, plastics are not injected or implanted into your body during a procedure, and plastic surgery does not always result in an unnatural look. Plastic surgery derives its name from the Greek word plastikos, which means “to shape” or “to mold”, as plastic surgery often aims to mold and sculpt the appearance of a person. Even in procedures involving the use of implants (such as breast implants for a breast augmentation surgery), industry standard implants are typically made from surgical grade silicone, metal, or Medpor (polymer) and not from plastics.
Though getting a plastic surgery procedure done does not always result in a “plastic” look, the outcome of the surgery is dependent on the skill and experience of the doctor/surgeon performing the procedure. Thus, when considering if you should proceed with the surgery, it is important to consider the skill level and track record of your surgeon.
While the rumors and misunderstandings surrounding plastic surgery seem to be never-ending, we hope that reading this article helped to clear some of your doubts and fears.
Now that some of the myths are out of the way and you feel confident in pursuing that cosmetic procedure you always wanted, or maybe you finally feel at ease with getting that medical reconstructive surgery you need, you might be searching for a reputable aesthetic clinic to kickstart your surgical journey right about now.
As a trusted and professional aesthetic clinic in Singapore, The Clifford Clinic houses highly-experienced and certified doctors with over 40 years of combined experience in dermatology, as well as reconstructive, aesthetics, and plastic surgery. Dedicated to fulfilling the expectations and needs of patients, you may rest assured that The Clifford Clinic will do our best to help you achieve the results you desire and deserve.
Contact us today to schedule your first appointment!