Plastic Surgery for Teens - on the Rise
Planning the Surgery
210,000 Plastic Surgeries on Teens 2009
More teenagers are seeking plastic surgery treatment than ever before. It is hard to believe that children as young as 13 are having injections to reduce or prevent appearance of facial lines. Teens typically want plastic surgery to improve physical characteristics that they feel are flawed as they want to fit in with their peers.
Something like severe acne with scarring makes a teen very self conscious. Generally it is also thought that the pressure from Hollywood movie stars and the models, shows like 90210, make the teenagers feel like they don’t measure up. Many plastic surgeons prefer not to do cosmetic surgery on teens except for special circumstances, but feel the teens should wait until they reach the age of consent depending on the procedure. However, there are circumstances that warrant surgery and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) performed 210,000 cosmetic procedures in 2009.
Plastic Surgeons are Also Pressured
If you decide to let your child have cosmetic surgery, find a good plastic surgeon and get some good cosmetic surgery information. Many surgeons send children to see a therapist first, which allows the child to explore the reasons for having the work done. This also gives the doctor the benefit of having a professional opinion which shows the teens maturity to make this type of decision. The physicians want the teens and parents to understand that surgery is not without risks.
Doctors are feeling pressure from their peers also to refuse purely aesthetic enhancements to teens. This goes for Botox as well. No one knows the long term effects of injecting one's skin with Botox as it has only been approved since 2002, and was meant for older women. There is no data as to how this might affect a teen over the decades of her life. Even adults aren’t always pleased with their cosmetic surgery decisions after the fact. Lisa Rina, wife of Harry Hamlin, has stated publicly her regrets for having too much Botox and other work according to the Huffington Post.
Common Cosmetic Surgeries
Boys are also having breast reduction surgery (due to Gynecomastia) and insurance will sometimes pay for this procedure.
The more common surgery is Rhinoplasty (commonly called a nose job) which is performed on the nose to straighten the bridge, remove an unsightly hump, reshape the tip or open breathing passages. This procedure cost roughly $4,216 and 34,994 were done on teens last year.
Ears Before Surgery
Ears after Surgery
Cosmetic Surgery Types
Ear pinning or an otoplasty is a surgical correction for protruding ears and this procedure can be done anytime after the age of five. This is something children are teased mercilessly about and so more commonly done. Last year 7,909 procedures were done with a price of $3,009.
When one breast grows much bigger than the other the surgeon can reduce the larger breast, augment the smaller breast with a saline implant or a combination of both. Many teens want breast implants. Breast surgery cost is roughly $3,000 and more than 8000 were done last year. It is advisable to wait until the breasts quit growing to achieve the best result. Breast augmentation surgery using silicon implants is only approved for a woman 22 years or older.
Teen Plastic Surgery with Dr. Darrick Antell
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Dermabrasion and Laser Resurfacing
Some teens have a problem with acne including scarring and that is usually the reason for requesting either of these next two procedures. While microderabrasion is most effective for patients in the early stages of aging, teens have also benefited from this technique.
It can reduce mild acne scarring and it can be effective against recurring acne symptoms when used with other forms of treatment. Hyperpigmentation is another common reason this procedure is done. The procedure is considered effective for both dark and light skinned patients. However it is not appropriate for severe acne advanced aging signs, sunburns, extensive hyper pigmentation, sensitive skin or some skin disorders. This procedure takes from 10 days to 3 weeks to heal. Last year 9,563 microabrasions were done at a cost of $152.
Laser resurfacing is also used for the above reasons. It involves an intense light beam that treats damaged surface skin. It helps with acne, acne scar, age spots. Face blemishes, scars, sun damage and hyperpigmentation. Laser treatment takes about 3-10 days to heal.
Laser treatment is also used on leg veins and hair removal. For laser treatments: skin resurfacing cost $2193 and 16,310 procedures were done last year; laser treatment of leg veins was done 19,933 at a cost of $400 and laser hair removal for $405 was done 65,308. All of this was on teens from 13-19.
Liposuction procedures were performed 3,179 times at a cost of $2,769. It is hard to think that many teens should have liposuction when exercising and a good diet would probably take care of most of their problems. A surprise to me also was facial plastic surgery for eyelids, which was performed 1,892 times at a cost of $2,809. I cannot figure out how a young teen would need eyelid surgery.
As a parent a couple of procedure listed here would be acceptable to me, but teenagers are very impulsive and they succumb to peer and media pressure to just try and fit in. We want to raise our children with good self esteem, and they shouldn’t want to look like another person. One physician reported that a girl came in with a picture of Britney Spears and wanted to look like her. She might not look bad but what an awful role model for your daughter. We want to teach our children to accentuate the positive and feel good about who they are inside as that is the long lasting person they will become.
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