The legend Michael Jackson once said, “You know, let’s put it this way, if all the people in Hollywood who have had plastic surgery, if they went on vacation, there wouldn’t be a person left in town” (qtd. in “Michael”). Plastic surgery has been very popular and generic throughout the media and with celebrities. Although some people may argue that they have the right to choose what is done to their body, plastic surgery should be restricted because research claims that this type of surgery has the potential to be physically, as well as mentally, harmful to a person. Plastic surgery affects the minds of people more than most know.
The media creates the image of a perfect-picture girl, who other ordinary girls look up to and idolize. Kristen Bailey, an editor for Lifestyle Magazine agrees, stating that “as long as we don’t reconfigure the way girls see themselves on TV, in movies, on billboards, in fashion magazines, and in music videos, even our smartest teenagers will continue to believe the media lie that all their worth is in their fastidious attention to the superficial and transitory” (19). This shows that if modern day society keeps supporting something this superficial, the next generation will have the wrong idea about natural beauty.
These tabloids make the girls, who do not look exactly like the picture-perfect airbrushed model, feel less about themselves and they form very low self esteem, so they take a drastic measure to get cosmetic procedures done to lose these insecurities. Financial issues are a major drawback to plastic surgery. With the ever-increasing prices of college tuition, real estate, and gas prices in this country, it is hardly logical that someone should make a large financial investment for such a surgery. Cosmetic surgery tends to be very expensive, and is usually not covered by medical insurance.
Jayne O’Donnell a journalist says that “if the purpose of your surgery is intended only to improve your appearance, it is almost certainly not a covered expense. ” Cosmetic surgery is not a need to most people, but a want. There may also be a major financial loss due to the time taken off work for recovery from the surgery. Most patients do not care about the loss of money or investing into something more beneficial, as long as they meet certain expectations given by their peers. The effects of others can be harmful to one’s body as well as one’s wallet.
The most crucial parts of plastic surgery are the physical factors that come with it. A lot can go wrong in a surgery. Anything from “excessive bleeding, heart attack or even a drop in blood pressure, while the surgery is going on…might lead to the death of the patient” (“Disadvantages”). Although some surgeons explain the risks to their patients, some might not in order to make a sale and gain money. The fatal risks of being under a knife need to be publicized more in order for people to be fully educated about cosmetic surgery. One example of why cosmetic surgery is risky is because the surgery involves manipulating nerves.
Even the most careful and top-paid surgeons cannot ensure that nerves will be safe from damages during the surgery. Nerves are extremely sensitive, and damage can be very severe. It is not worth it to fix one thing during the procedure and come out with another problem that also seeks medical attention. Mason Smith, a plastic surgeon, admits that “people have risked and lost their lives and limbs, and suffered devastating disfigurement and scarring as a result of plastic surgery gone completely wrong. ” The risks of losing a body part should be a big factor in making the decision for plastic surgery.
The risks should not be worth the surgery. On top of that, if the surgery was successful, one’s body takes a while to heal. Emma Luscri, a physiatrist in a facility in Oregon, says that “patients often have to spend weeks, sometimes even months, cloistered in their bedrooms or at private retreats, diminishing time spent with their families or in the office till they can see their anticipated result. ” Even if the procedure goes smoothly, one could find herself impatient and unhappy with the discomfort caused by the surgery. To be a patient does not mean to be patient.
Someone who got cosmetic surgery might have hatred towards the long process of healing, which leads to regret. Plastic surgery not only affects patients physically, but also mentally. A lot of people who strive to get cosmetic surgery are very insecure and they want something to be changed in their life, but it does not always end up that way. Rachel Nowak, a reporter, claims “a condition that is common among people having cosmetic surgery is body dimorphic disorder or ‘imagined ugliness’. BDD patients obsess about barely noticeable or non-existent flaws in their physical appearance.
” In other words she’s stating that these patients who want plastic surgery done to them are suffering from a mental disorder, which is something that people need to fix and promote change for. In particular, people who go under the knife in the quest for a more appealing body or face are more likely to be suffering from psychiatric problems. Many people who do make this decision to get plastic surgery are mentally unstable and depressed; they have the need to seek perfection in their appearance. Studies have also shown that “after they get a cosmetic procedure done, they still aren’t satisfied and still pick at their flaws.
Symptoms of anxiety and more depression start forming” (Bennett). This statement implies that cosmetic surgery puts the patient’s mental state in danger which is one of many reasons why plastic surgery should be restricted. Nearly all patients expect unrealistic results from cosmetic surgery, expecting to look like movie stars or models seen on magazines or billboards. Many patients end up being disappointed. Not only do these people expect a better look, they also expect to be happier, loved more, and become more successful.
Plastic surgery, however, cannot solve these problems. In the end, “statistics have shown that 6 out of 10 people have been more displeased with their results more than their actual natural face” (Stoots). Getting plastic surgery to improve one’s appearance may seem like a quick and efficient remedy, but the risks of not getting the results one expected are too high. Mental problems might develop, or escalade, due to the disappointment of the surgery. There are many organizations and foundations that promote the avoidance of cosmetic surgery.
Camille Sweeney, an editor for the New York Times, wrote “Michelle Obama is working hard to cultivate nutrition and healthy living awareness. We need more female leaders like writer Lisa Bloom, author of the book, “Think: Straight Talk for Women to Stay Smart in a Dumbed-Down World,” and documentary maker Jennifer Siebel Newsom. They can help create a new generation of empowered females around the topic of healthy female body image. ” Seeing these very highly educated women who are looked up to take a stand against cosmetic surgery is a powerful move. Instead, they promote living a healthy life and looking healthy.
This is very inspirational to many women who are insecure about their bodies. Another program is The Love Your Body Foundation. Dr. Mark Chung claims that it is “an organization that does not approve of routine or unnecessary cosmetic surgery for any human. The only thing they promote is stable women and men. This organization encourages and motivates people to have a healthy body image so that they will not consider risky surgery and damaging their mental state. ” All these organizations project the message that people should recognize society’s definition of beauty.
What is appealing does not necessarily guarantee happiness. Many men and women seek to be happy, and start to consider cosmetic surgery. These organizations save them from choosing the wrong path, and lead them to a healthy life. The messages coming from such important people will help potential plastic surgery patients believe that their true self, and well being, is more important than changing and harming their bodies. Clearly, cosmetic surgery should not be tolerated or accepted. It puts the patient’s body at risk and their mental state will be unstable.
Although it may seem exaggerated, Michael Jackson stated the majority of celebrities get plastic surgery (“Michael”), but that does not mean it is legitimate excuse to put oneself in danger. Works Cited Bailey, Kristen. Cosmetic Surgery. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2005. Print. Bennett, Emma. “Self Help. ” Go To Beauty. 2008. Web. 21 Sept. 2012 Chung, Mark. “Right Plastic Surgeon. ” Doctors. 2010. Web. 21 Sept. 2012 “Disadvantages of Plastic Surgery. ” Lifestyle Lounge. 2007. Web. 24 Sept. 2012. Luscri, Emma. “Plastic Babies. ” Medical Cosmetic. 2011. Web. 27 Sept. 2012.
“Michael Jackson Quotes. “Brainy Quote”. Web. 12 Oct. 2012. Nowak, Rachel. “When Looks Can Kill. ” New Scientist. 21 Oct. 2006: 18-21. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 26 Sept. 2012. O’Donnell, Jayne. “States Take Aim at ‘Practice Drift’. ” USA Today. 28 Dec. 2011: B. 1. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 06 Oct. 2012. Smith, Mason. “Self Harm. ” Women’s Health. 2012. Web. 24 Sept. 2012. Stoots, Hanna. “Human Barbie. ” ABC. 2012. Web. 23 Sept. 2012. Sweeney, Camille. “Seeking Self-Esteem Through Surgery. ” New York Times. 15 Jan. 2009: E3. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 26 Sept. 2012.