Cosmetic Surgery Isn’t Plastic Surgery

Plastic Surgery | Boston | Dr. Christopher Davidson

When you are having tummy tuck in Boston or facelift in Wellesley, would you go to a plastic surgeon or a cosmetic surgeon? People often interchange plastic surgery and cosmetic surgery, but while both seem to be similar, they have different applications. It’s easy to understand the difference by looking at why the procedure is done.

It’s true that both cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery change the appearance of the person, but the reason for both is different. Cosmetic surgery is elective and aesthetic, while plastic surgery is corrective and reconstructive in nature.

Here’s an example.

A woman has a perfectly working nose with no structural abnormalities. But she likes to make it more aesthetically pleasing by defining the bridge and slightly narrowing the nostrils. Because this is not a reconstructive procedure to correct dysfunction (as there is no dysfunction in this case), it’s called cosmetic surgery.

If a person broke his nose after an accident, the broken bone can be fixed through a reconstructive procedure, and this is called plastic surgery.

The concern of cosmetic surgeons is to give patients more aesthetic satisfaction with their appearance. However, many cosmetic surgeons are also plastic surgeons by profession.

Why People Seek Cosmetic Surgeons

Although cosmetic procedures are unnecessary, hundreds of thousands of Americans each year go to cosmetic clinics to have their forehead lifted, cheeks filled, noses done, or acne scars removed. Many also seek cosmetic surgeons to have their fatty skin toned or buttocks firmed.

Aesthetic enhancement is the chief reason. It’s all about beauty enhancement. For most people, beauty begets self-esteem. Someone with flaring sagging cheeks feels less confident than someone with firmer, fuller cheeks. Someone with loose abdominal skin cannot flaunt their skin on the beach.

People also like to poke fun at human imperfections. Many patients going to cosmetic surgery clinics admit being bullied or laughed at by other people for their imperfections. They believe that through cosmetic enhancement of their features they can get people to stop taunting them.

Who performs cosmetic surgery?

Various doctors from different specializations can perform cosmetic procedures. Ophthalmologists, otolaryngologists, and dermatologists may be certified to conduct cosmetic procedures. Many plastic surgeons are qualified to conduct cosmetic procedures. In fact, a lot of doctors who do cosmetic enhancements are plastic surgeons. But it’s important to make sure the surgeon has enough training and experience in cosmetic surgery.

People looking for a cosmetic surgeon in Wellesley or Boston should first look at top plastic surgeons in the area and check with the American Board of Plastic Surgery to ensure they are certified.

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