The Psychology of Cosmetic Plastic Surgery

The Psychology of Cosmetic Plastic Surgery

Your mood and cosmetic surgery

 

Cosmetic plastic surgery is supposed to make you feel good—about your body, about yourself—and give you more self-confidence and a more positive outlook on life. And it does.

However, the road from your initial consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon to that point of feeling good, sometimes and for some patients, goes through a low road of depression, self-doubt, wishing you had never done the surgery and just plain old feeling miserable and sorry for yourself. This is a normal psychological response to surgery and a change in body image; it’s nothing to be alarmed about and is totally normal!

The psychological aspects of dealing with the pain, change in body image and normal healing processes that our bodies require take all of us through the same emotional roller coaster to some degree. For some patients it’s barely noticeable; for others it causes fits of uncontrollable crying that cannot be explained. In the end, it all goes away, but you had better have an understanding and caring board-certified cosmetic plastic surgeon to help you along the way or you will have to face it alone!

Stages Of cosmetic surgery healing

There are several stages on the road to psychological recovery that follow along with your physical recovery after surgery.

1. Confusion

This stage is typical for the first few days after surgery. You may feel drugged (because you are), sleepy and apathetic.

2. Anger

As your brain recovers from the surgery and anesthesia and you become more coherent, you may become angry; this is usually a byproduct of the discomfort you feel after cosmetic surgery. You end up with a short fuse and are quick to anger. This is a particularly difficult time for the caring people around you who are trying to help and end up getting their heads bitten off by you!

3. Depression

This stage starts about a week or so after surgery. You start off with “Why did I do this to myself?”, “What on earth made me do this?”, etc. This period of self-doubt arises because you are itching to get back to your normal life and are going through a phase where there is no end in sight for your healing. Your surgical results probably do not look great yet due to the swelling that appears at this stage, and you are discouraged and feeling sorry for yourself.

4. Elation

You have to hope that the depression phase is short, because the elation phase comes very quickly afterward. In fact, it looks like a manic-depressive cycle in reverse. As the swelling and discomfort go away, you are left with the cosmetic plastic surgical result you wanted. You look and feel great—and that is the feeling you want to keep after your plastic surgery.