As reported in a recent European study, cosmetic surgery has been shown to improve self-esteem and happiness in the days following the procedure and for several months afterward. The study, which was conducted by Ruhr Universitat and the University of Basal, worked with 544 first-time surgical patients to establish information about those who choose cosmetic procedures. In addition, the study included 264 people who were interested in cosmetic surgery but chose not to get it, and 1,000 people who were not interested. The study was written up in the journal Clinical Psychological Science, and recently discussed in the NY Daily News.
Realistic Expectations Crucial to a Successful Plastic Surgery Outcome
Prior to their plastic surgery, there were no real happiness or self-esteem differences between those intending to have surgery and those who were not. However, when the breast lift, face lift, tummy tuck, and breast augmentation patients were interviewed again at three, six and twelve months post-surgery, the surgical patients were noticeably improved in these areas. In the words of the study authors, “these patients felt healthier, were less anxious, had developed more self-esteem and found the operated body feature in particular, but also their body as a whole, more attractive. No adverse effects were observed.” Another part of the study involved assessing how realistic the patient’s expectations were regarding their plastic surgery. According to these numbers, only about 12% of potential patients had unrealistic expectations of their outcomes and the effect their surgery would have on their lives. The American Psychological Association noted that previous research had firmly established a link between dissatisfaction, poor outcomes and unreasonable expectations. Overall, other statistics collected by the survey showed that woman remain the driving force behind plastic surgery. According to those numbers, 87% of patients who choose cosmetic procedures are women. Photo by Stf. O on Flickr.
Dr. Jonov is a cosmetic surgeon who specializes in plastic surgeries of the face, breast, and body at Seattle Plastic Surgery.