Sunday, August 7, 2011

Health benefits of Modern Cosmetic Medical Care - The Healthy and The Beautiful

The Healthy and The Beautiful –
Health benefits of Modern Cosmetic Medical Care

Beauty Enhancement by Cosmetic Medical Care is rapidly gaining popularity over the last few decades. Skeptics view this as purely an exercise to cater to a person’s vanity, to satisfy their whim and fancy. Is this true or is there some scientific basis behind the purpose of trying to look more beautiful? Let us see.

Beauty lies in the eyes of the Beholder. 

In reality, beauty is not a personal opinion alone; there is a consensus opinion about beauty as well. Scientific research has proved and identified the physical features in a person that are universally accepted as attractive or beautiful. What is not so well known is that most of these features when present actually reflect a healthy status of the person. Nature has gifted the healthy person with features that the human mind perceives as attractive; thus beauty is the parameter to identify a healthy person. Identifying beautiful/attractive features is Nature’s way of identifying the person with the best health
This is why humans are naturally attracted to beautiful persons, whether we are looking for partners or colleagues. Following Nature’s policy of ‘survival of the fittest’, a beautiful person the best chance of finding a partner, thus ensuring that the best of qualities in the species are passed on to the next generation.
The best example of this is the female figure. A hip to waist circumference ratio of less than 1.1 is associated with an appropriate body fat content and healthy fertility (reproductive health). A ratio greater than this is associated with overweight problems, menstrual irregularities; when the ratio is significantly high, the person will have or is likely to develop problems such as Diabetes, Hypertension, Heart problems and stroke.

Does it mean that a person who is not beautiful is unhealthy? To an extent this is true. Also, it is well known that Cosmetic Medical Care can significantly enhance/restore beauty of the individual. Does it mean that the person’s health also improves at the same time? This is also true, though partly. Let me explain both the points: people who are significantly unattractive (eg. out of shape) are at very high risk of having health problems (if they do not already have), while those who are minimally unattractive may very well be healthy. Once Cosmetic treatment restores beauty to both these groups of people, the latter group will have both beauty and health. What about the people who did not have sound health to begin with? Does the cosmetic Surgery procedure improve their health as well? This is likely to be true and is in fact the focus of medical research at present. 

Certain Cosmetic Surgery procedures certainly result in improved health. Reduction in body fat by Body Contouring Surgery or Bariatric Surgery has beyond doubt been proven to control or even eliminate the same problems seen with excess fat-Diabetes, Hypertension, Heart Disorders, Stroke, etc. classic examples are people with diabetes who undergo surgery – after surgery they dramatically manage sugar control without medicines. Another example is people with hypertension with irregular control of Blood Pressure OR needing multiple drugs for control; after surgery, in addition to the surgical benefit, their Blood Pressure stays under control with fewer/single drugs or rarely without medicines as well.

Certain other cosmetic issues, associated with local health problems, can be corrected permanently by Cosmetic Surgery with significant benefit to the associated health problem. One Classic example is excessively large breasts causing skin, shoulder and neck problems. Large breasts (for the person’s frame) may occur developmentally (in teenage) or after childbirth (the breast that enlarges at time of breast feeding fails to go back to the original size) or oven after menopause. Obvious problems include the embarrassment caused, the limitation in the choice of clothes and the problems due to undue sweating in the skin crease beneath the breasts. If uncorrected, over time other serious problems that develop include strap marks on the shoulder due to the brassiere, arthritis of the shoulder or neck joints even leading to neck disc problems. Successful surgery has been proven to correct all the obvious problems immediately and will stop or even reverse the serious problems in the neck and shoulder over a period of time.
Similarly, tummy tuck surgery to correct the pot belly problem will correct the obvious problems of a ugly/awkward looking tummy, and problems due to the skin fold. Studies have proven the favourable benefit of muscle tightening (done in the tummy tuck procedure) on the problem of disc prolapse and nerve compression in the lower back. Improved muscle tone on the front of the trunk helps increase the intervertebral space on the back of the trunk and relieves pressure on the damaged disc-this leads to an improvement in the symptoms.

Finally, there are distinct psychological benefits from successful Cosmetic Surgery. even when cosmetic problems are not associated with health problems, such as bulky nose without breathing difficulty OR small/underdeveloped breasts in a teenage girl OR feminine chest in an adolescent boy, permanent safe surgical correction of the problem leads to a significant improvement in the person’s body image, self-esteem and self-confidence. In today’s competitive world, smart looks are likely to open new doors of opportunity, to give a person the edge over others and help a person achieve one’s goals in personal or professional life. It has the potential to be the turning point in a person’s life, the break that one seeks for in difficult times to tackle life with renewed vigour and enthusiasm.

The biggest gain from these psychological benefits is a remarkable decrease in the risk of depression problems. People with Depression have a higher risk of Cardiovascular Diseases, stroke and high Blood Pressure. Also, a successful procedure has an overall positive impact on the person’s health by making him/her more likely to exercise

Along with these potential benefits lurks the danger from the risks of associated complications. Risks are an inevitable part of every action that we do in life, but are kept low by doing it the recommended way. Just to illustrate, there is a risk even in crossing a road; if we stick to the rules, the chances of a problem are negligible. In fact, we don't realize the risk exists unless brought to our notice. Similarly, the trained physician, with his knowledge and experience, is able to identify the risks specific to the person, procedure, and either take steps to minimize them or clearly decide that benefits from the procedure are not worth the risk. He will also disapprove of unjustified expectations. The Trained Surgeon will thus keep the risk very low. Risk of Surgical complications becomes high when such Risks have not been anticipated by the surgeon. A common cause for this is a physician who undertakes procedures without the suitable training, knowledge or experience. It leads to disappointment, loss of time and money besides bringing disrepute to the procedure and specialty.

Instances of such Complications, that result from inappropriate decisions or poor surgical technique, lead upto disasters stories in media. Inappropriate decisions include agreeing for an over sized breast implant (high risk of wound breakdown and implant removal) OR excess liposuction (leading to skin necrosis, fat embolism or death).

Thus, improved awareness among the common man will help in choosing the suitable Physician, thereby avoiding complications and keeping Risks low. This will ensure the health benefits of the procedure in addition to the benefits of Beauty Enhancement can be enjoyed by a greater number of people.

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