Crafting beauty

Surgeons are reshaping the natural contours of the body and helping to
improve the areas found unattractive, says Ratika Sarin

TiME was when people despaired over their protruding belly or misaligned teeth or even a crooked nose whenever they looked into a mirror. Not any more. Sociologists say that a combination of peer pressure and advancement in medical science is tempting young people to experiment with their natural looks to overcome their physical aberrations.

Cosmetic procedures are giving young and old the option to create what nature has not given. Surgeons are not just reshaping the natural contours of the body; they are also helping improve those areas that the individual finds unattractive or undesirable.

Botox injections remove wrinkles and give the skin a silky and youthful look
Botox injections remove wrinkles and give the skin a silky and youthful look Photo: NF

Today, any awkward feature like an unsightly shape of a nose or development of full breasts in boys due to hormonal imbalance effect self-esteem and the ability to cope with formative blues. `A0

An increasing number of people are refusing to accept ungainly breasts or protruding bellies. They are ready to invest in their bodies with options, and some of the most popular cosmetic procedures include rhinoplasty or enhancing the shape of the nose, breast enhancement or reduction, liposuction to flatten their abdomen. Some are even going in for facial implants in the chin, cheek or jaw that can change their entire demeanour.

Studies show that though a majority of the people opting for cosmetic surgery are young ó usually between the ages of 20 and 30. There is an increase in the number of older people who are going under the surgeonís knife to enhance their looks.

In many Western countries breast augmentation tops the list followed by lip-fillings and non-surgical botox injections to remove facial wrinkles. Other popular cosmetic interventions include eyelid surgery to remove excess skin, muscle and fatty tissue to reduce bags and improve the look of upper eyelids. There is also the chemical peel wherein a solution is applied to the skin causing it to peel off and reveal new, smoother skin. Here is a list of some of the most popular cosmetic procedures with their approximate cost, and downtime for each of these procedures.

Botox

In this minimally invasive procedure, an injection derived from Botulinum Toxiun-A is administered to block electric impulses from the brain that make particular muscles contract. Botox thus paralyses and relaxes the muscles that cause wrinkles while giving skin a silky and youthful look.

Botox works best where wrinkles have set in deep and have stared making a person look haggard and old. When such people are injected, the results are instant ó their look changes for the better. Interestingly many young people are going in for the procedure at an early age so as to completely bypass the onset of wrinkles and frown-lines on the forehead.

One of the most notable benefits of Botox is that it is non-surgical and far less invasive than a plastic or cosmetic surgery and one doesnít have to wait for the painful scars to heal to see the results.

The treatment lasts for about 30 minutes, and no recovery time is needed. The positive changes in facial appearance become visible in around three days to be precise.

A one-time Botox treatment can cost somewhere between Rs 5,000 and Rs 8,000.

Liposuction

One of the most popular cosmetic procedures, liposuction is designed to remove localised fat in the stomach or face, chin, cheeks and thighs. The surgeon makes an incision with a fat melting injection and inserts a hollow needle under the skin, scraping it along the underside skin surface to loosen the fat deposits and then sucking them into the vacuum through a tube connected to the needle, making that part of the body instantly slim.

Liposuction works best in areas of the body with stubborn fat deposits which do not respond to overall weight loss. Thighs, abdomen, buttocks, hips, upper arms, chin and neck can benefit from this procedure.`A0

Since this is an invasive surgery, hospitalisation is generally recommended for one or two days. Pain is bound to occur but it is subdued by pain-killers.

Rhinoplasty

Another common procedure in India is a nose job or rhinoplasty. It is performed either to correct breathing problems or to aesthetically enhance the shape of the nose. According to cosmetic surgeons, Indian noses tend to be a bit thicker and broader in comparison to western people who have thin and sharp noses. Thatís why many young people come to have their noses reconstructed. ó NF





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