I remember hearing a long time ago that the most common plastic surgery after divorce was breast implants. If that statement is accurate, I would not be surprised. I would think many women contemplate plastic surgery after divorce because they feel it’s a fresh start, a new chapter in their life, and they want to look their best and feel good about themselves. That said, there are also bad reasons for women to want plastic surgery after divorce. Maybe a woman wants to try to save her marriage and thinks that if she looks prettier or has larger breasts, her husband will change his mind about the divorce. Maybe she has no self-esteem and thinks that plastic surgery will solve that issue. To talk about plastic surgery after divorce, I interviewed Dr. Michael A. Epstein, a Chicago North Shore based Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who has been practicing for 28 years. Here is the interview:
JP: It is common for women going through a divorce to explore plastic surgery? What are the most common procedures you see newly separated/divorced women do and why?
MAE: While it is true that I often see newly separated or divorced women in my practice, their interest for seeking out attention are not uniform. The impetus for coming to the office in consultation may be singular in that they are doing their best to create a fresh start but their specific needs are typically more related to their age and unique body structure. Women in their late 30’s to early 50’s that have had children are not unlike many of their happily married friends in that they are looking to restore body features that they may have had prior to childbearing. Breast enhancement (lifts and/or augmentations) and body contouring (liposuction, tummy tucks or body lifts) are commonly sought after. For those that are older I am treating features related to facial aging such as face lifts, brow lifts, eyelid lifts, and wrinkle reduction procedures like skin resurfacing, Botox injections and volume replacement injections like Juvederm or restylane.
JP: Do you ever tell patients to wait because it might be too soon during or after the divorce?
MAE:It is not uncommon for me to have a consultation with someone where I end up recommending that they wait on having a surgical procedure. They could be in a place where they are emotionally vulnerable or the stress and lifestyle at that particular time in their lives is not appropriate to allow them to be able to recover and heal successfully.
JP: What should someone’s emotional state be when she is considering plastic surgery of any kind? What are the “right” reasons versus “wrong” reasons?
MAE: Emotional stability is as often a requirement for surgery as is one’s physical well being. When undergoing “elective” surgery it is important to be in good health. When making an assessment about a prospective patient’s candidacy for plastic surgery I do my best to evaluate the patient’s motives and their judgement along with evaluating their emotional and physical state. With a recently separated or divorced individual it is not uncommon to see someone that is doing this for spite or, on the other end of the spectrum, for hopes of saving the relationship. These are obviously bad reasons to want plastic surgery.
JP: What does plastic surgery do for women emotionally? Are there benefits that have nothing to do with the actual physical results?
MAE:Through plastic surgery I am able to improve the quality of a person’s life by reshaping or restoring disproportionate or deformed anatomical body or facial features and in turn, these physical changes often have a positive effect on a person’s emotional and psychological well being. I am not a psychiatrist, but I have been doing this type of surgery for 28 years and I have seen first hand how the physical alterations that are made coincide with a positive transformation in that same patient’s outlook on life. They are genuinely happier. This, by the way, is supported by many post surgical surveys.
In private practice since 1992, Board Certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Michael A. Epstein (founder of MAE Plastic Surgery and Transcend MedSpa), has received national recognition for his surgical skill and masterful technique. His training, education and experience have made him one of Chicagoland’s leading plastic surgeons, having performed thousands of cosmetic procedures throughout his career. For more information, visithttp://www.maeplasticsurgery.