6 Secrets Plastic Surgeons Tell Their Friends
Psssst….can you keep a secret? We can’t, and that’s why we’re letting you in on some secrets that other plastic surgeons tell their friends. After all, why should the friends of surgeons be the only ones that get the honest scoop? Part of this article was originally posted on Yahoo.com/Health.
Sleep on your back! ”It’s the best thing you can do for your face. If you sleep on your side or your stomach every night, you’ll have deeper wrinkles on the side of your face that’s pressed into the pillow—especially along your smile line and the corner of your mouth. As impossible as it sounds, you really need to sleep on your back so that you’re not putting that extra pressure on your skin. If you just can’t make that work, swap your cotton pillowcase for one made of silk or satin, two fabrics that are much more forgiving.” —Edward H. Farrior, M.D., F.A.C.S., a Florida-based facial plastic surgeon and past president of the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
We (sometimes) think you’re nut. ”Friends often ask me if they should have a certain procedure done when they really don’t need it. One was obsessed with fixing the tiniest bump on the bridge of her nose. Another was worried that her ears stuck out too far. None of that had ever crossed my mind. I’ll tell them, ‘Leave yourself alone—there’s just not enough to gain from going down that road.’ People become fixated with the smallest things that no one else sees. When they don’t believe me, I point out my chin: I have this weird asymmetry that no one else ever notices.” —Edwin Williams, M.D., F.A.C.S., a facial plastic surgeon in Albany, NY, and president-elect of the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
A tummy tuck is major surgery. ”Tummy tucks are designed to remove extra skin and fat in the lower belly, which is why they’re becoming more and more popular among women who are finished having kids. Moms I know are even comfortable telling people they’ve had surgery—it just doesn’t carry the same stigma that it once did. But it’s important to understand that it’s not a quick or easy fix. It takes time for your body to heal. A significant portion of the swelling goes down after the first couple of weeks, but it’s usually another six to eight weeks before the puffiness is completely gone. And it might be a year before the scar—which typically stretches from hip bone to hip bone—fades and the final results take shape. Many people don’t seem to realize that!” —Anureet K. Bajaj, M.D., an Oklahoma City–based plastic surgeon and member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons
You can pick boobs out of a catalog. ”I love it when people bring in pictures of breasts that they like. It helps to en-sure that we’re all on the same page from the get-go—especially when it comes to cup size. (Sometimes a patient will say she wants to be a C and then bring me a picture of a DD. They’re not the same thing!) If you can find a photo of somebody with a similar build to you, it’s completely realistic to expect similar results on your own body. The women who work for me have done that: One of them got a breast enhancement, and then the rest of them wanted what she had. And since they’re all built pretty much the same way, I was able to give them the results they were looking for. But if you bring me a picture of someone with a completely different body type, that won’t be the case.” —Anne Taylor, M.D., associate professor of plastic surgery at Ohio State University in Columbus, OH
Seriously, enough with the cigarettes and the sun. ”I had one patient who needed a lot of facial reconstruction, but I told her I wouldn’t operate until she had given up smoking for at least six months. When she came back for her post-op checkup, her scars weren’t healing the way I wanted. I knew immediately that she had started smoking again. I tell my friends and family that you can typically look at anyone’s skin and know if they smoke—even if they only have a few cigarettes a day. The skin takes a beating from smoking—and it’s also easily damaged by the sun. If one person in a set of twins spends a lot of time in the sun and the other avoids it, it’ll look like they have 10 years between them. Laying off the sun and the cigarettes is the easiest way to keep your skin looking young.” —Edwin Williams, M.D.
Liposuction will never be a substitute for the gym. ”People always ask me how much weight they’ll lose with liposuction. That’s the big myth. Liposuction is a contouring procedure—it’s not something that will magically make you skinny again. There aren’t enough surgeons who emphasize that. I’ve told friends about times when patients have had consultations with doctors who promised them amazing results that I don’t think are possible. Worse, I’ve met people who have actually had the surgery and been disappointed with the outcome. Weight loss is done through diet and exercise. If a patient needs to lose a lot of weight, I’ll have her work with a nutritionist for six months to a year before we move forward. You have to be at your ideal body weight—or close—before liposuction, because that’s the way you’re going to get the best results.” —Scott Bradley Glasberg, M.D., president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons