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Alexander Residence: Would you have cosmetic surgery?

Friday, 25 November 2011

Would you have cosmetic surgery?

I've been thinking about my attitude to cosmetic surgery.  If someone asked me if I would consider it, I have always said a categoric no, I'm too squeamish and my feeling has always been that interfering with nature is wrong.  

But since then I've had two c sections and some dental work.  All highly necessary medical procedures with nothing to do with vanity.  But the labours and their resulting emergency c sections made me realise my squeam threshold is higher than I thought.  Then the pain free dental work I had, to fix a tooth that cracked and died, made me realise that modern dentistry is truly amazing.

It was the dentistry that really got me thinking.  A year ago I went to see an orthodontist to see about having invisible braces.  As an 11 year old I made a flippant decision not to have braces which I have regretted at various points in my life.  It's mainly my left incisor that's wonky.  Everyone tells me it's part of my character.  Some days I feel that, others I absolutely hate it.  Especially when it's captured on photos at a bad angle.
The orthodontist's verdict was that I would have to have full on proper braces, for two years.  I'm still debating it, but the cost and the hassle is putting me off.

Back to the dentists.  The dentist warned me he might have to replace my cracked tooth if the crack was extensive.  The irony is, it was the perfectly straight equivalent of my wonky tooth that cracked, my second left incisor, as opposed to second right.  Had it been my wonky tooth that died, would I have told him to just whip it out and stick a straight one in?  Would I have felt I had lost a part of me?  I'm not sure.  In this instance he saved the tooth, but it left me thinking.  I'm sure people in the media glare do this all the time for vanity.

Media representations are half the problem here, we are drowning in airbrushed and cosmetically enhanced versions of beauty.  Growing older makes me wonder - it's 7 years since those wedding pictures were taken - will I be tempted to have procedures for vanity's sake?  Currently the answer is no, but I said no to braces at 11.  How will I feel in another 7 years, 14 years, 21 years?  I hope I will just feel more comfortable in my own skin.

Vanity seems a misleading term though, I know many people who have had cosmetic procedures would argue vanity is the wrong word.  Sometimes fixing something is about more than just your mirror image.  Some people opt to have surgery due to an illness such as breast cancer.  In these circumstances, women who have lost a breast may decide to have a breast enlargement to restore their body to how it once was before contracting the disease. In this sort of situation, cosmetic surgery may be helpful at restoring confidence and normality to their lives.

So that's where my head's at.  Wondering over a wonky tooth.  Where's yours when it comes to cosmetic surgery?  Would you or have you been tempted to fix what nature gave you, or what it takes away?

The Hospital Group asked me where I stood on cosmetic surgery, this is a sponsored post, but the views expressed are entirely my own.

Photo credits - Martin O'Neal

NaBloPoMo 2011

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At 25 November 2011 at 16:30 , Anonymous Midife singlemum said...

I had 6 teeth removed when I was a child as my jaw was too crowded (these days they stretch your jaw to accommodate the teeth). I always wonder what I was supposed to look like if I hadn't had the surgery. I wonder that about women with "American orhodontic" smiles - what were they supposed to look like.

At 25 November 2011 at 20:57 , Anonymous Helloitsgemma said...

I have a discoloured tooth. Looks awful in photos but it's part me. Have friends who are very very happy with Brest enlargements that have literally changed lives. Botox facelifts - cant get my head round it. Nah.

At 26 November 2011 at 14:01 , Anonymous Emma @mummymummymum said...

I would love to have my nose made smaller....not sure i'll ever be brave enough....I'd consider laser eye surgery too.....

At 26 November 2011 at 15:21 , Blogger The Alexander Residence said...

MLSM - that's a really interesting way to look at it :)
Gemma - we're thinking on similar lines :)
Emma - does require a huge amount a of bravery to take the risk, you're right. I know people who say laser eye surgery is lifechanging, but that makes me very squeamish.

At 26 November 2011 at 18:48 , Anonymous TheBoyandMe said...

I've always said no; my body is the way it is because I'm a lazy bugger and won't sort it out. However, my skin is horrendous and I would love for something to be done to it to remove the years of teenage acne, chickenpox scars and now post-partum acne. I'd love to be able to not need to wear make-up.

At 27 November 2011 at 21:39 , Anonymous HonestMum said...

I think you are beautiful so don't change anything! Surgery scares me massively so the wimp that I am (despite a high pain threshold)means no procedures for me!

At 27 November 2011 at 22:58 , Blogger Looking for Blue Sky said...

I'm at an age when many of my contemporaries could well be thinking about cosmetic surgery, but I haven't been affected in that way yet....the things about my body that worried me when I was younger - like my nose and my pear shape - I don't really care about now, so I'm not sure. I wouldn't rule it out, but the horror stories of things going wrong would probably put me off.


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