A campaign to tackle the rising number of botched cosmetic procedures is to be launched shortly by the government in England.
There have been warnings about the rise in the use of self-injected dermal and lip fillers, with the risk of causing complications that then have to be treated on the NHS.
At Somerset Cosmetic Clinic we welcome this campaign; better regulations are badly needed.
England’s Department of Health told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme the campaign, scheduled to launch in the coming weeks, would look to ensure the public were fully informed about the importance of seeking professional advice regarding fillers, Botox and cosmetic surgery.
Part of the problem is that it has never been easier to buy dermal fillers online. They are not prescription drugs and not only can you pop into your local beautician to plump up your lips now, you can actually self-inject, causing potentially life changing damages, which the severely stretched NHS is picking up on.
It is now very common for celebrities and online ‘influencers’ to share their experiences of the various new treatments they are trying. And whilst this is encouraging more and more people to seek out new treatments, that are sometimes quite extreme, the education needed to ensure that they accessing safe treatments, from people qualified to deliver them, are not necessarily keeping pace. This means that people, safe in the belief that their favourite celeb has had no problems are blindly following them down paths not suited for them.
During the same interview with the BBC, one man described how he had become ‘addicted’ to dermal fillers.
“Greg” (not his real name) told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme he bought dermal fillers online, as well as Botox and began self-injecting into his face three years ago.
“You can lose sight of reality of what your face looks like,” he said.
“There was a point where I was doing it quite a lot and my mum was noticing that my face was very distorted, and I was losing a lot of my characteristics.”
You do not have to be a medical practitioner to administer such treatments, as filler solutions are not regulated like medicines.
One of Greg’s self-injected lip fillers went wrong when he had an infection.
“I woke up the next morning, they were uneven – one side was bigger than the other,” he said.
“I had blisters. It was incredibly, incredibly painful.
“I was embarrassed to seek help.”
But self-injecting can be dangerous and in rare cases may need to be treated with surgery or medication. It can also cause blindness.
We are fully behind any campaign that prevents this sort of unregulated potentially dangerous practice. The training that we undertake at Somerset Cosmetic Clinic comes on top of years of medical education and general practice. Advice given really needs to fit individuals. These treatments aren’t currently regulated but if you visit Somerset Cosmetic Clinic for any treatment you will find that we treat it as if it is, taking full account of your personal situation, including considering all aspects of your health, what you wish to achieve and what will be the most effective treatment for you. Dr Ed has now been practicing Aesthetic Medicine for 16 years.
In another article published the Independent, it is being highlighted that mental health needs to be taken into the equation when aesthetic treatments are being booked and that clinic staff should be trained to recognise the symptoms of mental health disorders such as BDD (Body Dysmorphic Disorder), which can cause people to obsess over their appearance. This can lead to believing multiple treatments are needed.
‘Kitty Wallace, from the Body Dysmorphic Disorder foundation, said:
“Cosmetic procedures like Botox, now widely available on the high street, are putting people at risk and can have a damaging effect on the mental health of young people. We know that people with BDD are more likely to turn to ‘quick fix’ procedures that ultimately do not address or help the underlying psychological condition. ”
BDD affects an astonishing one in 50 people, causing significant distress and has a huge impact on quality of life. We now need all parts of society to change their attitudes and take action to protect vulnerable individuals. The type of unregulated treatment referenced in this blog is one of the factors driving this progressively worsening situation.
How it’s done at Somerset Cosmetic Clinic
Dr Ed qualified from St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School in 1998. Following this he completed his training as a GP. He has exclusively specialised in cosmetic medicine for 16 years.
Dr Ed fully understands that many of us care about the way we look and want to maintain our appearance or occasionally, improve it, and gives those who attend his clinic in Taunton time to discuss concerns and assess what may be achievable in a safe medical environment. He also uses the word ‘patient’ for those who attend rather than ‘client’ as the treatments offered are specialist medical treatments. It is important to him that he offers continuous one-one care to all of his patients and he will advise as to what is a realistic outcome to any procedure that may be considered. He may decline performing a treatment if he feels that it will not achieve the desired result. You can also be sure that he will openly discuss any side effects of any proposed procedures so that there are no surprises!
As well as being told about any possible side effects, there is a page on the website which explains the aftercare needed for each treatment