January 16, 2014 by gregrabidoux2013
First Lady of the United States (FLOTUS) Michelle Obama, turns 50 (yep, the Big 5-0) tomorrow and she’s prepared to do whatever it takes to stay youthful. Even if that may mean BOTOX and plastic surgery. And, since she is the First Lady, her pro-plastic surgery stance is making news. And, since she is the First Lady, it does raise the question-Does her own personal preference matter? Should it?
In an upcoming interview with PEOPLE magazine, Mrs. Obama, who has been an active advocate of youthful exercise and healthy eating choices, told PEOPLE that women should be free to “do whatever makes them feel good about themselves” and if that includes Botox injections and plastic surgery so be it. And she for one, refuses to rule it out when it comes to her own looks.
Geez, whatever happened to being beautiful on the inside?
On the other hand with so many women and increasingly men doing “it” (plastic surgery) is it really a big deal anymore?
Well, it’s not just Hollywood types like Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Kelly Ripa and the um, over-inflated Pamela Anderson who have their plastic surgeon on speed dial. In fact, many of us non-celebrity types are racing to get under the knife in our quest for eternal youth and beauty. ABC News reports that there were 6.1 million legal botox injections performed in the US in 2012 alone, an increase of 10% from just the prior year. This number included 125,000 patients between 18-25 who apparently sought to prevent wrinkles from ever emerging later in life. As one patient exclaimed, “It’s like getting a haircut, it makes you feel better.”
I guess. Though my haircuts don’t cost $250 a pop and unless I’m mistaken my barber isn’t injecting me with a deadly toxin. But hey, as Mrs. Obama says, women, and implicitly men, should be free to do it if it makes them feel better, don’t you agree?
Well, let’s be sure we’re all on the same page before we see if it’s a big, little or no deal at all, shall we?
BOTOX is actually derived from Botulinum Toxin. This is a deadly bacteria which when injected into the body affects our neuromuscular functions, literally paralyzing the muscles beneath our skin. So, when the muscles are paralyzed it slows or even temporarily prevents the deterioration of the skin into wrinkles or creases. It also can make it impossible to fully “animate” or move that portion of the skin that has the most intense dosage of this toxin. It leads to the “Joan Rivers” syndrome, you know, when you can’t smile or frown and your face looks like it was just frozen in place because it kinda was just frozen in place.
But let’s also be clear. Having your face temporarily paralyzed and looking less than fully animated may be the least of your worries. BOTOX is a toxin that in larger doses causes a lethal food poisoning to humans and animals called botulism. And if your own common sense thinks that can’t be good to inject into your body you are right.
New research indicates that in addition to common side effects of allergic reactions, rashes, neck pain, difficulty swallowing, nausea, swelling, loss of neuromuscular control and structural weakening in other parts of your face, the society of British plastic surgeons reports that an increase in patients are suffering lumpiness in skin, pigmentation change (from natural state to blue) and even the onset of blindness.
German research is also reporting that when patients start to inject botox before age 30 many may develop an immunity, causing them to get dangerously high levels of botox injections to sustain the same effect.
And a number of psychologists are raising alarms about the “addictive” nature of plastic surgery. Basically, folks can’t seem to stop with a nip here and a tuck there. It’s not just Kim Kardashian who believes deeply in the value of a facial “re-work.” The average number of surgeries per patient is rising from 1.5 to over 4.
Hey, who hasn’t struggled with self-esteem issues over their body image at one point or another? Who wouldn’t like to change that one or two or more imperfections about themselves if they could? And don’t kid yourself, It’s not just women and girls who are chasing the dream. More young adult boys (ages 14-17) are also undergoing procedures like calf-injections to look more “fit and muscular” and chest implants to get that “body-builder cut.” It’s estimated that well over 100,000 boys and girls get “off the books” plastic surgery before they reach their 16th birthday.
But, as Michelle Obama has said, we should all have the right to do what it takes to feel better about ourselves. The problem though seems to be that injecting a deadly toxin in your face, or filling your lips with silicone or your breasts or your calf muscles or your rear-end or whatever body “part” seems not to be quite “red carpet ready” can make you real sick and even kill you. So much for making you “feel better.”
Look, I’m all for my fellow Americans feeling better. It’s just I wish we’d place a much greater emphasis on truly being better not just feeling better from artificial means. Less fostering our ongoing culture of worshipping some crazy notion of ideal youth and beauty and more of admiring real inner beauty.
So, does it matter if FLOTUS is pro-BOTOX and plastic surgery to try and stay youthful-looking?
Well, if it matters when she advocates exercise and eating right and we should pay attention to her as a role model then it seems only fair we do the same now. And now that she has our attention I for one am choosing to look away.
How about you?