More dispatches from Concentration Camp Gaza, via Al-Monitor
Pregnancies significantly changed
Safa Ahmad's physical appearance, which began to affect her marriage and
cause her psychological problems. About five months ago, Safa, a
28-year-old living in Gaza City, had breast implants in the hope they
would help her feel better psychologically and improve things at home.
“My husband wanted to marry someone else because of the changes in my looks after I gave birth to three sons," she told Al-Monitor. "But
by coincidence, I heard about cosmetic surgeries in Gaza, and I
suggested to my husband that I have one. He immediately agreed, so I got
silicon breast implants, and they drastically changed my looks as well
as my marital and family life. My husband then let go of the idea of
marrying someone else.”
The mainstream media continually carries stories of the "humanitarian crisis" in Gaza- of critical shortages of food and medicine. We are not getting the full story.
The difficult economic and social situation in Gaza does not appear
to be preventing Gazans from undergoing cosmetic surgery in search of
happiness, which is difficult to find given the siege of Israeli occupation and recurring wars.
Dr. Salah Zaanin, a cosmetic and laser surgery consultant, started
working in the field three years ago in a private hospital in Gaza City.
The high demand for cosmetic surgeries, by men and women, led him to
open his own clinic.
Zaanin told Al-Monitor that three years after returning from Greece
and working in the Gaza Strip, he found that rapid progress had been
made in this area and that the demand for surgery, despite the economic and other problems
Gaza residents were experiencing, had increased. “We are a people who
love life and beauty like all other people," he said. "Because of the
psychological pressures, a lot of women began looking after their
emotional and physical well-being, especially after learning of the
advances in cosmetic surgery and the presence of modern equipment in
Zaanin said he has conducted hundreds of cosmetic operations in Gaza,
all of which were successful. Some clients even began entrusting him
with operations that used to be referred to the outside.
He said that the most common procedures in Gaza are liposuction,
breast augmentation and “tummy tucks” for women. Tightening eyelids and
removing bags under the eyes are popular as well. “In the past month,
to fill and remove wrinkles in men and women rose by 600% in my clinic,
indicating that despite the blockade and the stress, we are trying to
be happy by looking better," Zaanin said. "In addition, there has been a 300% increase in lip augmentation and beautification.”
The economy, of course, still plays a role in the demand for certain
types of operations even with the prices in Gaza being low compared to
other countries. Zaanin said that the fees for cosmetic surgeries in the
Gaza Strip are the lowest in the world and that they depend on the
materials used in a procedure. “Cosmetic surgeries range in price from
$1,000 to $2,000, while nonsurgical [silicon injections] cost up to
$300," Zaanin said.
"Therefore, all social classes are resorting to cosmetic surgery. For
example, the poor opt for low-priced operations. Everyone should have
the right to enjoy and live life, and I feel happy when I can make that
happen for someone.”
Zaanin also said that the changes in Eastern societies, such as women
entering the workforce, their financial independence and the importance
of looking good, have all played a role in the growing popularity of
cosmetic surgery among women and men. He said that all operations are
conducted within Gaza's religious and social frameworks and medical
standards. “Women come accompanied by their guardian, either the father
or the husband, and we do not conduct operations without them," Zaanin said. "In fact, many men choose to have such operations because of these visits...”
h/t Elder of Ziyon