Negative Effects Of Cosmetic Surgery

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In modern America, the media dictates the opinion of society on everything from the types of clothing worn to the political candidates supported; the cosmetic surgery industry is no different. With the popularity of television shows such as Extreme Makeover, the general public is inundated with images promoting the use of cosmetic surgery to achieve the societal view of what is beautiful. The stereotypical definition of beauty is vast, but has several common factors, namely thin noses, full lips, large breasts, small waists, and curvy hips. For most women, these must-have traits do not come naturally, therefore, women feel obligated by society to spend thousands of dollars and risk their health to undergo cosmetic procedures. Due to the influx…show more content…
While there are legitimate reasons why an individual would elect to undergo cosmetic surgery, the majority of potential patients are doing so for cosmetic reasons (Sexton et. al. 3). Patients receiving reconstructive surgeries to correct birth defects, or other traumas, generally are not the target audience of the onslaught of media attention. Sociologists propose three theories that best represent the influence of media on body image for those considering surgery for cosmetic reasons: The Social Comparison Theory, The Self-Schema Theory, and The Self Discrepancy Theory. While Social Comparison Theory shows how individuals appraise themselves by analyzing others, Self-Schema Theory explains the self-worth of individuals are established by what is viewed as beneficial, and Self Discrepancy Theory illustrates that individuals posses a glorified version of themselves (Walker 1+). Although these theories do not explain all of the ways in which media influences the decision to undergo cosmetic surgery, they do support a more clear understanding of the significance of media…show more content…
In a 2013 survey, sent to over five thousand members of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, more than half of the respondents reported that they frequently use social media to advertise their plastic surgery practices. Approximately twenty five percent of surveyed surgeons declared that the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, or other government agencies, should regulate the use of social media to ensure its ethical use ("Half"… N. Page). However, to decide whether or not the use of social media advertising is a successful way of reaching new patients, it is essential to investigate the influence social media has over potential patients. Of the 527 individuals surveyed by RealSelf, “Nearly half confirmed the social media impact, with 15.37% answering a flat out ‘yes,’ and 33.40% saying, ‘somewhat, I knew I wanted a change, but photos on social media made me more aware’”. According to Dr. Emer, an astounding 60 percent of his patients have come from advertisements on social media networks (Reiman

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