Everyone’s journey into Appearance Medicine starts differently, for me it was the day I looked in the mirror and felt the image looking back at me was no longer a true reflection of the person I felt myself to be. It was like it just happened all of a sudden and I didn’t feel great about it. For others I’ve heard things like ‘My kids were always asking me why I was grumpy, or looking so serious when I actually wasn’t’, or ‘People asking why I often look sad when that wasn’t how I felt’.
So, what can be done when life catches up on us and what is reflecting on the outside is not how we feel inside? I certainly had lots of questions; what is possible? Will it be safe? Where do I even start?
As I soon discovered, the answers were revealed when I found myself a skilled Appearance Medicine practitioner so I want to help you do the same…
WILL I BE IN SAFE HANDS?
A very good question and yes! The good news is that if you follow the useful tips we’re sharing here in this blog you are likely to find a skilled Appearance Medicine practitioner that suits you and who puts your safety first.
Did you know that the Appearance Medicine industry remains relatively unregulated? This means that if you don’t do your homework it’s entirely possible to receive treatment by someone who is not a medical professional, not professionally trained and is quite inexperienced...
That’s a little scary right?
OK, so I’m sure you’ll appreciate there is always an element of risk involved with any type of medical treatment, but you can significantly minimise your risk by finding a skilled practitioner who knows what they are doing. But be aware, there are a lot of Appearance Medicine providers out there, so here’s our guide to finding a someone you can trust:
HOW DO I FIND A GOOD PRACTITIONER?
Firstly, you need to think about what result you want from the treatment, and also what you don’t want (One of the most common statements from our clients? I don’t want a trout-pout!). Think about what is important to you. It may be a journey to simply achieve a more refreshed looking you, or there might be specific concerns that are affecting your confidence, so be clear about your priorities.
With this in mind, you will be better prepared to determine whether the practitioner you speak to is actually listening to you and making reasonable recommendations based on what you want to achieve.
1.Trust your friends, ask around.
We all know that word of mouth is the best advertising you can possibly get and of course it works both ways, if clients are not happy that word soon gets around too. So based on this, we suggest you confide in a friend or two and ask their advice. You will probably be surprised to discover how many people in your circle of friends have treatments already and they will usually be very happy to share their experiences with you.
2. Do some internet research.
Agreed, sometimes when you are starting out on your journey you’re not quite ready share your plans with others and after all, do your friends and family really need to know? Of course they don’t and this is when the internet is your friend!
I strongly recommend you search for a Doctor or Registered Nurse trained in Appearance Medicine, experienced medical practitioners may often be a member of the New Zealand Society of Cosmetic Medicine (NZSCM) while some Registered Nurses might belong to a professional body called Cosmetic Appearance Nurse Network (CANN).
3. Make the most of a free consultation.
A good practitioner will provide an initial consultation, obligation-free and at no charge.
This is a time for you to discuss your concerns about your appearance and really check them out. It’s a bit like match-making, after your consultation you can decide if you’ve found a good fit for you.
Make the most of this time by asking questions, it is up to your practitioner to provide you with as much information as you need to make an informed decision about what is right for you. Don’t be pushed into making any hasty decisions! An informed choice also means having time to reflect on the information given.
Remember it is absolutely acceptable to ask about training and experience; it’s never a good idea to just assume someone is qualified.
Choosing your Practitioner.
Following your consultation, I suggest you reflect on the priorities you established prior and consider the following:
- Did the practitioner listen to your concerns and priorities, encourage you to talk or ask questions? After all, what is important is what you want rather than the practitioner.
- Did they take their time? Did you feel rushed or pressured?
- Did they explain the treatments they offer, products and pricing?
- Can you reasonably expect their recommendations will achieve your desired results?
- Did you feel comfortable with them - both their manner and their appearance? Did the practitioner look natural? If you feel they look a bit ‘overdone’ then their aesthetic may not be right for you!
IS IT REALLY A GOOD DEAL?
So if you’ve chosen your practitioner then you will have also agreed to their price for services which means you’re all sorted - exciting!
But what if cost is the driving factor for choosing a practitioner? After all, it’s hard to resist a bargain, but have you also heard the saying ‘If you see a deal that looks too-good-to-be-true, it probably is’? Then read on…
Whether you are new to appearance medicine or have had treatments before, if you’re looking around, you will no doubt see some tempting offers and package deals advertised. While you shouldn’t necessarily discount these entirely, I do believe it’s worth having a good think before you jump in. Here are a few important things to consider:
1. Be wary of heavy discounts.
2. Are you just a number?
3.Does low price mean low quality?
When weighing up treatments based on price alone, you’ll want to understand exactly what you are getting for your money.
We invest in good quality product and ongoing training. Over the years I have been requested by clients to fix treatments that have gone wrong, frequently the treatments are the result of poor choices involving non-qualified treatment providers and ‘cheap’ products and services.
Often in the end, you as the client pay more, not only financially (for reparative work) but physically and emotionally as you come to terms with a less than satisfactory initial treatment.
Having worked in many different appearance medicine environments, I know the approach each business has towards genuine client care can vary greatly. When you’re considering a tempting package deal, make sure you look at the provider’s whole approach. Do they offer a comprehensive facial assessment and provide all the information you need up front? Do they offer complimentary post-treatment check-ups and care? Be sure your practitioner stands by their work and is honestly concerned with your satisfaction.
When it comes to injectables like B.tox or fillers, there are many products on the market, some may not be properly tested so can increase risk of adverse reactions or side effects, and some are simply not effective or long-lasting. Experienced and confident practitioners will only use products they know and trust, so my advice is to always ask what product is being recommended and why.
I hope this first blog post has helped to unravel a few of the things when considering who and what cosmetic treatment might be right for you. It’s your body and your decision so take the time, I’m sure you’ll be glad you did.
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Until next time,