The government has recently launched a new campaign to raise awareness about the potential risks of cosmetic procedures and to help the public make an informed decision before have a treatment.
The campaign comes amid a rise in demand for cosmetic procedures and the growth in unregulated companies offering cheaper services.
The advice and information for patients is applicable to all types of cosmetic procedure, with a focus on the most popular types: Botox®; dermal fillers; breast augmentation; liposuction; and lasers and light treatments.
Health Minister Jackie Doyle-Price said: ‘Many people don’t think fully about the consequences – both physical and mental – of having a cosmetic procedure. These are serious treatments, and you should think carefully before you leap in.
‘I’m particularly worried about people seeking treatments which are unsuitable for them, or who are not prepared for the mental health impact of an aesthetic change.
‘But we also need people to do their homework on the company or individual carrying out the procedure – if a deal looks too good to be true, then don’t be afraid to walk away. The consequences of botched procedures can be dreadful.’
As part of the campaign, the government has published advice on the nhs.uk website, setting out the questions people should ask before they undergo any cosmetic procedure, including:
- speaking to a professional about the outcomes you can expect;
- choosing a reputable, safe and qualified practitioner who is trained in the specific treatment and either a regulated healthcare professional (for example, a doctor or nurse) or listed on an Accredited Register, overseen by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care; and
- avoiding being pressured into making decisions on treatments without time to fully reflect.
Serious complications of cosmetic procedures can include infection, nerve damage, blindness, blood clots, scarring, and in rare cases have resulted in death.