By JAMIE SLACK
Photos by RACHEL LOCK
THE BUSINESS OF rediscovering youth has been growing steadily over the years, not only in the entire country, but also in our community. Many area physicians, aestheticians and alternative medicine experts are joining this booming industry and bringing anti-aging services to people who are seeking self-improvement and ways to feel and look better.
The beauty industry all over the world has changed exponentially. Women have always taken the lead when it comes to beauty standards, but now men are becoming an added demographic in fighting the clock. To capitalize on this trend, plastic surgery clinics, medical spas and therapeutic treatment facilities have been popping up in Topeka at a steady pace over the last 10 years.
GOING UNDER THE SCALPEL
Plastic surgery has been the foremost industry leader for treatments providing lasting physical change. While many of the services plastic surgeons provide have been around for years, technology has made many of those procedures cheaper and less invasive.
Nearly 1.8 million surgical cosmetic procedures and about 15.5 million minimally invasive ones were performed in the U.S. last year, according to an American Society of Plastic Surgeons survey. The report showed that most Americans are going under the knife to either eliminate fat, contour their bodies or change their faces.
There has always been this idea that if we want some type of specialty service, whatever that service may be, we must travel outside of the Topeka community to reach it. With improvements in medical technology and the growth of our own medical community, getting the work you want done on your body is possible without leaving town. When it comes to plastic surgery, Topeka has several physicians that offer all of the same services as specialists in larger markets.
KMC Plastic Surgery, which has locations in Topeka, Lawrence and Manhattan, has a team of highly qualified specialists who perform reconstructive surgery, as well as plastic surgery. Dr. Michael Gross and Dr. Carla Skytta divide their time between the three locations. Dr. Gross said he has noticed the uptick in clients seeking a variety of cosmetic procedures.
“I see a variety of patients from many age groups, getting invasive and non-invasive procedures,” Dr. Gross said. “We do plastic surgery, liposuction, all the way down to fillers.”
Plastic surgery options range from tummy tucks and breast augmentation to rhinoplasties and deep chemical peels.
Dr. Marc Baraban, a surgeon with Cotton O’Neil Plastic Surgery & Reconstructive Surgery, also offers many of these types of more invasive cosmetic procedures. Dr. Baraban said his clinic is seeing an increase in the demand for less invasive treatments that are meant to keep up with age, rather than reverse it. He said each procedure creates a trajectory for overall health and wellness—small changes that bring about larger results.
Members of the millennial generation are taking much more of an active role in how they are aging, and are driving the health and beauty industry in Topeka. They are also much more knowledgeable about what they want. Dr. Baraban said his younger patients prefer the more minor procedures.
“Probably 20 or 25 years ago it was mostly older people,” Dr. Baraban said. “But today, they’re [millenials] making less invasive moves for a more youthful look and aiming to be more preventive with their choices.”