American Society of Plastic Surgeons
For Medical Professionals

Plastic surgery and New Year's resolutions

As 2017 approaches, many of us will begin to consider our annual resolutions. Most commonly, resolutions are centered around healthier living such as going to the gym or losing weight. Often, however, less than ten per cent of people are successful in actually achieving their resolutions. Considering this statistic, could getting plastic surgery provide a sense of fulfillment to start the New Year?

According to the 2015 statistics on plastic surgery published by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the number of cosmetic procedures performed last year in the United States is on the rise. While an improving economy certainly plays a role, the popularity of social media and the rise of the "selfie" have made individuals more conscious about how they look. No longer is plastic surgery something that one considers as they age. It is not uncommon for people in their 20s to have plastic surgery to improve their image, which can subsequently influence their professional lives through social media.

As many New Year's resolutions are focused on health and fitness, plastic surgery complements this pivot towards a healthy lifestyle. One of the most common resolutions is to lose weight, which is why the gyms are usually packed during the beginning of the year. Adhering to a healthy diet and a commitment to exercise does not, however, always deliver ideal results, as there can be stubborn areas of fat that are difficult to slim down.

Many people consider plastic surgery at the beginning of the New Year to improve their outlook and self-esteem. Certain cosmetic procedures can complement the gains made in the gym or through a proper healthy diet. While considering plastic surgery, it is important to have realistic goals of what can and cannot be accomplished. Plastic surgery is meant to complement a healthy lifestyle. It cannot and should not be a means to drastically alter one's appearance. You cannot expect to look like a certain celebrity after plastic surgery; however, you can expect to look like a more refreshed version of yourself.

It is vital to consult with a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and preferably one who is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Your safety is paramount when considering any plastic surgery procedure, and plastic surgeons who meet both the above criteria are held to the strictest standards in terms of ethics and patient safety. The adage "you get what you pay for" is particularly true in plastic surgery. Often, looking for shortcuts or discounts can result in disastrous situations. Please be sure to do your homework and research the credentials of not only your surgeon but also the facility in which the procedure will be performed.

With a proper attitude, realistic expectations, and careful research, you can enjoy a new look for yourself going into the New Year. Many studies suggest that people experience more satisfaction in life as well as a higher self-esteem after plastic surgery. This is consistent with the purpose of most resolutions, which is to enjoy a higher quality of life. A positive self-image can have an enormous impact on our attitudes toward ourselves and our lives. Considering this, it's quite possible that a carefully planned plastic surgery can help many people in achieving their New Year's resolutions going into 2017.

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.


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