Dr. Robert T. Grant is Plastic Surgeon-in-Chief for the combined Divisions of Plastic Surgery at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center and New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, the University Hospitals of Columbia and Cornell, a position he has held since April of 2006. Board-certified in general surgery and plastic surgery, Dr. Grant is a member of the American Association of Plastic Surgeons (AAPS), the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).
LIFE STAGE PERSONAL ENHANCEMENT
- Think “Age Maintenance” — Not “Extreme Makeover” Incremental treatments and procedures can help you maintain your best look over timeBy Dr. Robert T. Grant, MD, MSc, FACS
Did you ever wonder why certain celebrities and other high-profile people seem to age better than your average baby boomer or Gen-Xer?
I believe one of the reasons many celebrities look so good for so long is that they understand the concept of “age maintenance.”
“Age-maintenance procedures” is a term I like far better than “anti-aging procedures” because it truly reflects what is happening when someone embraces Life Stage Personal Enhancement.
Age maintenance means that you’re caring for your appearance over time, typically utilizing techniques that are less invasive, not too pricey and easier to recover from quickly.
By contrast, those who don’t pay attention to age maintenance look unnatural when they try to play catch-up and have more extensive procedures done all at once later in life.
We’ve all seen examples of this: The operations may be a technical success, but the results are so obvious a change that the patient becomes a walking advertisement for excessive or overzealous plastic surgery.
Of course, many women prefer to wait as long as possible before undertaking any plastic surgical procedure. This may be the right decision in any given case, but it’s a decision that should be made in the context of understanding a major biological reality that significantly affects not only the aging process, but how plastic surgery can best work in the context of that process:
Yes, I’m referring to perimenopause and the impact of menopause.
Let’s look at skin as a specific example of why age maintenance through the years can be preferable to more significant surgical procedures later on.
Female sex hormones are responsible for much of what is thought to be attractive about skin and its youthful appearance — smoothness, texture and elasticity. The changes brought about by menopause affect a woman’s hormone levels and, consequently, can affect the way her skin looks.
When those hormone levels start to decline, the skin’s youthful appearance begins to change. That’s why a woman in her 40s typically begins to see the changes associated with aging start to accelerate.
When a woman waits until later in life to have plastic surgical procedures, the skin isn’t as resilient as it once was. Because of this, the aesthetic results of the surgery may not last as long. In addition, she may require more nipping and tucking than if the same procedure was done when she had a higher level of circulating female hormones.
To summarize: A series of incremental treatments and procedures begun today can help you maintain your best look over time. Waiting until your late-50s and into your 60s can result in costlier procedures that deliver an aesthetic result you may not find as appealing as if you had started on age maintenance procedures when you were younger.
The good news is that you have plenty of options, so don’t hesitate to get advice from a board-certified plastic surgeon. Your doctor will partner with you to choose the most appropriate course of action that will help you look and feel your best — at any age.
Appearance is an important aspect of modern life. People today not only want to feel good inside; they also want to look good outside. To achieve this end a lot of New York men and women elect to undergo plastic surgery in New York City each year. The results are often dramatic and permanent, so it is important that the patient knows what to expect and that he or she chooses a NY plastic surgeon wisely. Patients seeking advice on having plastic surgery in New York City may turn first to word of mouth from their friends and family who may have already undergone a breast augmentation, liposuction or other plastic surgery procedure. The Internet is also a common place to look for a good, qualified plastic surgeon.
Plastic surgery techniques originally evolved from reconstructive procedures, and some techniques are the same, whether they are used for cosmetic or reconstructive purposes.
Many other plastic surgery procedures like breast augmentation or liposuction are more widely used to enhance appearance, began as solutions to reconstructive problems. The relationship between the two types of procedures is so close that surgeons well-versed in plastic surgery procedures are most likely also to have the background and training required for reconstructive surgery.