Cosmetic injectables, which are relatively inexpensive, may cause more psychological harm to people already suffering from body image issues, say experts.

Botox for beauty? Not So Fast – Doctors Say You Should Get a Mental Health Screening First | Life

Cosmetic injectables, which are relatively inexpensive, may cause more psychological harm to people who already suffer from body image issues, experts say.

  • The demand for cosmetic treatments has grown rapidly over the past few years.
  • In many countries, record numbers of young people are opting for Botox treatments for cosmetic reasons.
  • Clinicians are calling for mandatory mental health screenings to prevent vulnerable people from aggravating any pre-existing psychological conditions.

The Botox business is booming: the demand for these low-cost cosmetic injections has increased considerably in recent years. The market is expected to grow even more between 2022 and 2030.

Not too long ago, a study by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons found that Botox injections have become the most popular minimally invasive cosmetic procedure in 2020, a phenomenon the authors called “post -pandemic”. [Botox] boom”.

The cosmetic treatment is made from a neurotoxin called botulinum toxin type A. In minute, refined doses, the toxin can be injected into desired areas of the body to block the action of certain nerves and combat fine lines and blotches. angry folds, for example.

LEARN MORE | We embrace aging, but is there a “right age” to get your first Botox injection?

The solution to lineless faces has become so popular that they’ve become part of social events — think Christine Quinn’s “burgers and Botox” parties of Selling Sunset. But it’s not just celebrities and the elite who are willing to pay to look their best.

Nicci Levy, owner of Alchemy 43, an aesthetic bar specializing in cosmetic micro-treatments in Beverly Hills, noticed the rise of these low-cost cosmetic treatments and capitalized on the idea. She told Entrepreneur magazine in 2019, “People were spending thousands of dollars on these shots, but the experience was like going to the doctor to get a flu shot.”

Now experts are asking people who seek cosmetic injections, such as Botox, to undergo mandatory mental health screening, according to the Guardian. They think they want to prevent vulnerable people from aggravating pre-existing psychological conditions, such as body image issues.

Given the growing demand for these injections, they specifically want clinicians to be trained to conduct such psychological assessments.

Dr. Toni Pikoos, a clinical psychologist who specializes in body image and cosmetic procedures, told the publication that the relatively low cost of injectables “may make it an even more dangerous space than surgery.”

Depending on the part of the body you want to target, the price can range from R1,500 to R7,000, certified reconstructive and plastic surgeon Dr. Deon Weyers told True Love magazine in August.

Pikoos said treatments are considered “quick and easy, low risk”, but research indicates that body dysmorphia (BDD) and other mental health conditions have a higher prevalence among people seeking treatment. non-surgical cosmetic procedures.

LEARN MORE | Jennifer Garner warns teenage girls to be careful with cosmetic procedures

She also told ABC News, “There is a smaller group of people who might have significant mental health issues or body dysmorphic disorder, where they actually don’t benefit from cosmetic treatment.

“It can fuel a cycle that tends to make them feel worse and more obsessed with how they look.”

Pikoos thinks the decision to train clinicians to perform mental health checkups was a good idea.

Pre-treatment counseling rather than a psychological assessment

For someone seeking cosmetic treatment, which has the potential to alter their body image, pre-treatment counseling is crucial, says counselor and licensed psychotherapist Nsamu Moonga.

Moonga told News24: “The difficulty with using a term like ‘psychological assessment’ is that it has specific meanings… [but] pre-treatment counseling, on the other hand, is slow [and effective] enough to allow the clinician – the treatment administrator – and the treatment recipient, to be clear about what they want and why they want that particular treatment.”

Pre-treatment counseling would include things like giving the patient enough information about what the treatment involves, the risks involved, if any, and whether there are any potential side effects so that the person is able to take an informed decision.

Once all this information has been made available and all risk factors have been considered by the patient, there is enough room for the patient to decide whether or not to continue treatment, says Moonga.

“And when they looked at the material [and agree to continue with the treatment]they alone will be responsible for the possible consequences of their choice.

LEARN MORE | Sharon Stone was rejected by her young ex-boyfriend after refusing to receive Botox

Although you cannot become physically dependent on Botox, it is possible to become psychologically dependent on it. A 2017 study of Botox use in the United States noted that some women suffered from a “crack-like” addiction to the process as they attempted to supplement previous treatments.

An older study, based on a survey of clients from 81 clinics, found that more than 40% of patients who regularly used Botox “expressed a compulsive motive” for doing so, according to the Independent. Additionally, study participants who received five or more injections displayed more “addictive traits” than those who received none.

Dr Carter Singh, who worked on the study, said: “Botox has a good safety profile, but it also has potentially addictive qualities.

Celebrities who have given up on Botox

Some celebrities have expressed with refreshing candor their regret for having undergone several cosmetic procedures in the past. Friends star Courtney Cox has gone public that she regrets her decision to have plastic surgery and Botox injections to try to prolong her youth, YOU magazine reported.

“You go out, and you don’t look so bad, and you don’t think anyone noticed – that’s good. Then someone tells you about another doctor… Next thing you know, you’re in diapers and diapers and diapers,” she said.

And after suffering a massive stroke, actor Sharon Stone said she had a different view on cosmetic procedures, according to News24.

“There were periods in super fame where I had Botox and fillers and stuff and then I had this massive stroke and a nine day brain hemorrhage and I had to have more 300 shots of Botox and fillers to make the side of my face resurface,” she said.

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