How to Choose the Best Plastic Surgeon for You
You’re ready to make a change in how you look and feel! You are ready to look as young as you feel as you approach your next birthday, but you are not sure how to go about treating your problem areas. Perhaps it is the wrinkles on your face. Or maybe it seems to be getting harder to find flattering swimsuits and dresses. You’re wondering if there is a safe and effective way to make these issues go away. Guess what — you don’t have to know it all! You just need to find the right person who can break down the situation and your options. Let’s talk about how you go about finding the best plastic surgeon for you.
But now … how do you pick the best plastic surgeon? Choosing from among the many doctors in your area, especially here around Raleigh, can feel overwhelming! Even if you hear a recommendation or two, what worked for one person may not be a good fit for you. You’re about to go through an exciting, but significant, change in your life. Make sure you find the best plastic surgeon for you. Here are the most important factors to consider when seeking out a board-certified plastic surgeon.
The Difference Between Cosmetic and Plastic Surgeons
The first thing to know: a cosmetic surgeon and a plastic surgeon are not the same things. In fact, most people don’t know the difference. To become certified in the specialty of plastic surgery, a doctor must go through 25,000 hours of additional training, and that is after medical school. Plastic surgeons can treat physical conditions present at birth like cleft lip and palate, repair complex wounds from severe trauma, cancer, and burns, as well as perform many procedures that are considered cosmetic, such as a Mommy Makeover, Breast Implants, and Liposuction.
In practice, cosmetic surgeons tend to focus on procedures that enhance someone’s appearance. But the more important distinction is that cosmetic surgery is not recognized as a true specialty by the American Board of Medical Specialities. Since the term “cosmetic surgeon” does not require specific training, anyone can call themselves a cosmetic surgeon. It does not require the same level of training, certification, knowledge base, surgical or anatomical expertise as that for real, board-certified plastic surgeons. Good to know, right?
Certifications and Training
Next, make sure your plastic surgeon is Board Certified in plastic surgery. He or she should be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. You can verify here using the doctor’s name and location. Checking a surgeon’s certifications is crucial because it shows you that they are qualified and meet safety standards.
Ask your surgeon how he or she is engaging and learning the newest techniques and technology, while balancing that with proven and reliable practices. Ask about their experience and comfort level with your desired procedure. Surgeons may specialize or focus on specific procedures. You might want to avoid working with someone who doesn’t perform your procedure as often.
Read Plastic Surgeon Reviews
Naturally, you’ll read reviews about some of your plastic surgeon options. Go to Facebook and Google, as well as Healthgrades and RealSelf, to check out what people have to say about plastic surgeons in your area.
Tip: Ask the plastic surgery office for references so you can speak directly with people to learn more about their experiences. Many of our patients don’t do this, but those who do tell us they found it immensely useful to hear from real people who feel comfortable sharing more details than they would leave in an online review.
Check Out the Results
So, you’ve confirmed your choices for a surgeon are certified and they all have good reviews. Next, take a look at their results. Reputable doctors will share before and after photos either during the consultation or on their social media and website. If you’re not fond of the transformations, you might prefer a different doctor. As you look at these photos, consider finding someone who matches your general body type. If you don’t see one, ask your doctor during the consultation to show you examples of patients that match better to your body and procedure of interest.
Consult with the Doctor
Your conversation with the doctor should carry a lot of weight when choosing the best plastic surgeon. While you speak with him or her, you should come away feeling positive about the procedure. You should be comfortable with your plastic surgeon, so much so that you can share your deepest feelings about the surgery. The person you chose should show compassion, listen carefully to your concerns, and be available to answer any questions you might have throughout the process.
More than that, your doctor should make sure the timing is right. An excellent and caring surgeon will take the time to understand your place in life, your goals, procedure cost and desired recovery time. He or she may suggest you wait a few months, for example, if you’re going through a stressful time, caring for an ailing loved one, experiencing health issues yourself, or trying to get pregnant. A lot of what happens in our lives can impact surgery. You want to feel confident that your surgeon has your best interests in mind.
Other Tips for Choosing the Best Plastic Surgeon
Many other factors will affect your decision including:
- Sometimes women prefer female surgeons. They might have a perspective better suited to understanding your particular challenges as woman and mom working inside or outside of the home. A female plastic surgeon may also have a keen sense of your goals, and vision for a natural result, based on her own experiences.
- When considering a surgeon for your procedure, visit his or her office. You want to make sure he/she operates in a safe, certified surgical center. As an example, at Tannan Plastic Surgery, our surgical suite contains an operating room that is AAAASF-certified and held to the highest standards.
- Remember that cheaper is not always better when it comes to your body. Maintaining quality standards requires consistent attention and engagement, and this is not inexpensive. This is your health. You owe it to yourself to find someone you can trust – someone who will take care of you and your health.
Want to learn more?
It is critically important that you and your surgeon are on the same page. This requires honest communication and open dialogue. There are many factors to consider when choosing the best plastic surgeon for you. With this guide, you should be one step closer to achieving your plastic surgery goals.
In search of the best plastic surgeon for you? Contact Tannan Plastic Surgery for a consultation today!