Hiding Behind The Mask
“It is fear which creates the mask, and fear which keeps it in place. The mask is hiding our true and most beautiful self from both ourselves and from the world. In its place is a mask of un-beauty.” Nisandeh Neta, founder of Open Circles, an international center for personal-growth and leadership, explains that people have a fear to show their true selves, so they go through their lives hiding behind a mask. According to the AP I-Village poll, more than half of women polled do not like their weight, while forty-eight percent view their figure negatively. Due to these negative outlooks about themselves, many people will look towards a quick fix, in this case plastic surgery. What is plastic surgery and what is its true meaning? Is it actually assisting in helping a burned victims melted-off face, or helping out a child born with cleft lip, or has it become an obsession with perfection and becoming what is looked at as a Vogue model-sized two or keeping that youthful look? Has cosmetic surgery gone too far? Generally speaking, plastic surgery is the specialization in enhancing physical appearance by reducing scarring, or disfigurement that may occur as a result of accidents, birth defects, or treatment for disease. There are two sides of plastic surgery, reconstructive surgery and cosmetic surgery. Reconstructive surgery is performed on abnormal structures of the body, caused by congenial defects, developmental abnormalities, trauma, infection, tumors or disease. Reconstructive surgery is generally covered by most health insurance policies although coverage for specific procedures and levels of coverage may vary greatly. On the other hand, cosmetic surgery deals with a range of surgical procedures that are carried out for the sole purpose to alter and enhance a patient’s physical appearance. This is considered an elective surgery due to the fact that it does not involve a medical emergency, and since it is not medically important, health insurance companies do not cover elective surgeries. These procedures can be done at the convenience of the patient or medical staff. Cosmetic surgery has many life long benefits, but when it is abused it can lead to life long consequences. There are many positive aspects of getting cosmetic surgery, one of them being an improved appearance and body image. First of all, cosmetic surgery allows you to be in control of how your body is shaped and formed, turning what would be years of hard work into just hours of surgery. This can be useful for those who are unable to put in the time for hard work and exercise, as well as people who are genetically heavyset. Cosmetic surgery allows you to tone your body, and it also gives you the ability to make improvements to areas that people are not satisfied with, such as implants, lifts, and restructuring. The most common of these surgeries in the United States is breast implants. A family friend who had breast implants said, ”I feel like a new women, I am able to fit into my clothes better, and I don’t feel as shy or self-conscious about my body.” She now feels a lot more confident and comfortable with her body after the surgery. Being able to enlarge certain aspects of your body can bring along a lot of immediate self-confidence, as well as make you feel more comfortable with yourself. Next on the list is a thirty-five year old male from Miami, Florida, who told his story of how he, “… lived a lifetime with a horribly huge nose,” saying that his, “…whole life it had plagued [him], made [him] self-conscious.” He was still uncertain about getting rhinoplasty, a nose job, so he took months talking to different surgeons until he felt he had found the right one. After talking to the doctor and his staff for a few weeks he finally decided to go through with the procedure. An hour later, he was awake and praising his doctor and his new nose saying, “I have the GREATEST doctor ever, I had no pain when I woke up...
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