Friday, March 16, 2012

Cosmetic Surgery Anyone?

According to the American Academy of Plastic Surgeons there has been a 77% increase in cosmetic surgery over the past 10 years. I thought we were in the midst of an economic crisis!

Women's Health magazine says that 69 percent of adults in the United States would consider having cosmetic work done. Breast implants may seem to be the favorite, but that's just because they are so obvious. More popular procedures include face lifts, breast lifts, tummy tucks, hair transplants, nose jobs, liposuction and injections like Botox and Juvederm.

I'm going to be very up-front and honest here. I had a face lift six years ago and a tummy tuck a year later. I'm not even counted in those figures above because I had them done here in Mexico. I think of it as part of the 'starting over' of retirement.

I got serious about dieting when I retired in 2004, and I lost 30 pounds. I told myself that if I could keep it off for one year, I would get rid of some of the excess skin that had accumulated on my face. I did. I also exercised like crazy to firm up the muscles of the rest of my body. I had gone out dancing four nights a week to lose the weight and then took a Latin dance aerobic class five days a week for a year to build muscle. It worked well. But even doing 300 crunches a day couldn't help with the stretch-marked belly I had from three pregnancies. And so I had a tummy tuck.

Now I hear that Mexico is turning into a destination for Medical Tourism. People are starting companies to help with all the arrangements and are looking to buy expensive properties where guests can hide out in luxury while healing.

And why not? The prices here are still amazing but not quite as low as it was when I did it. Are you ready for this? I paid a total of about $1,800US for my face lift, including two nights in the hospital in Guadalajara. A year later, the tummy tuck and two nights in the hospital was $2,500. Those prices included everything (except the luxury hide-out)!

I'm just one of many Americans and Canadians who have gone the same route. So many of us move down here and make a commitment to lose weight and then decide we deserve to lose that extra skin, too. Sure, there are a few that can't seem to stop once they've started and end up somehow strangely distorted, but that happens up north, too. Everything in moderation, right? Besides, it really does hurt! I'm glad I did what I did, but I wouldn't want to do any more.

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