What experience do they have? look at their background, how long have they been practising aesthetics? Obviously all practitioners have to start somewhere, however, the longer they have been working in aesthetics the more experience they will have. Additionally, a practitioner working full-time in aesthetics, rather than as a side-line to their day job, is much more likely to have a higher level of experience under their belt and their focus will be solely on their practise.
Are they fully insured? Ensure your practitioner is fully insured for all the procedures they carry out. For your safety, medical malpractice and public indemnity insurance cover is a must.
Where do they practise from? Is it clean, clinical and appropriate to carry out medical aesthetic procedures? A practitioner with their own exclusive permanent clinical base is able to offer their patients the comfort of knowing they are available at short notice should they be needed. Some practitioners are mobile and work from rented rooms only one or two days a month - consider how they are able to manage any complications should they arise.
Do they offer a comprehensive consultation and a cooling off period? An essential part of any aesthetic service is a comprehensive consultation to ensure you are suitable for treatment and to provide you with all the information you need in order to make an informed decision on whether to go ahead with a procedure. It is good practice for the practitioner to offer treatment appointments separately from the consultation appointment to give you time to consider your options.
Do they provide follow-up care? A good practitioner will offer follow-up care to all patients and this should be included in the cost of your treatment. All injectable aesthetic treatments carry a potential risk of side effects, from minor and expected ones such as bruising and swelling to more rare but serious complications, such as occlusion of a blood vessel. Your practitioner should be available to see you at short notice should any of these occur.
What should I look for when choosing an aesthetic practitioner?
Finding an aesthetic practitioner that you feel comfortable to trust with your appearance can be daunting. With an increasing availability of aesthetic treatments and an abundance of social media advertising dermal fillers and anti-wrinkle treatments, often alongside traditional beauty treatments, it is easy to trivialise these procedures and over-look the potential risks they carry. The anatomy of the face is extremely complex, with a network of blood vessels and nerves to make the mind boggle, so when choosing a practitioner, I would offer the following advice to ensure you are in the best hands:
Are they qualified? Legislation surrounding aesthetics is currently sadly lacking and this means that many of those offering treatments may have no healthcare qualifications or little training. Ensuring you are treated by a registered healthcare professional such as an Independent Nurse Prescriber (NMC), doctor (GMC) or dentist (GDC) who are obligated to practise to the standards set by their regulatory bodies as this will increase the chances of you receiving high standard care and give you a level of redress should you not be happy with your treatment.
Check that they are fully trained to advanced level in all the procedures they are offering with their certificates available to view. Individual practitioners should have evidence that they update their skills on a regular basis and, ideally, have a support network of other experienced aesthetic colleagues.