Social Media Prompting Cosmetic Surgery?

By Dr. James White

That dreaded moment when you receive a tagged photo of yourself and ask …do I really look like that? Whether it be the classic double chin shot or an unflattering body photo, society’s elevated use of photos, sparked by social media, is becoming an uninvited wake up call to many of us once blissfully oblivious to our aesthetic flaws, prompting a greater demand in cosmetic surgery.

Where once only celebrities felt pressure to look their best, social media to the common individual has become analogous to paparazzi and Hollywood stars. More alarming is the abrupt rise in chin augmentation surgery. As reported by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, from 2010 to 2011, the instance of chin implant procedures increased by 71 percent. While it is important to note that cosmetic plastic surgery typically does increase by single digits with time, 71 percent is an almost unprecedented spike.

Further supporting the correlation between social media and cosmetic surgery is what we are beginning to hear during consultations with our patients. Instead of expressing dissatisfaction with what they see in the mirror, more and more patients are confiding that they do not like the way they look in their Facebook pictures or during Skype sessions. Patients are becoming more concerned with angles not easily observed in the mirror, but noticeable during web cam sessions and candid photos.

This trend is not limited to chin augmentation as the number of liposuction, facelift surgery and male patients are also on the rise, and while cosmetic procedures can correct many flaws, surgery must not be taken lightly. As with any surgical procedure, certain risks are possible.

Unfortunately, it is no longer a matter of being satisfied solely with your reflection in the mirror. We are now more aware of how we appear to our friends, acquaintances and , ultimately, the world.

To find out if you are a candidate for cosmetic enhancement, call (423) 648-4011.