If your teen asks for plastic surgery, it can bring up a lot of emotions all at once. Cosmetic surgery can be a touchy subject for many people, and the question of whether it’s appropriate for teens can be a very polarizing one. If there’s one piece of advice we give parents of interested teenagers, it’s to schedule a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon. This is one of the best ways we can discuss goals, expectations, and whether our patients can benefit from their chosen procedure – and this is no different for teens. If you’re still unsure, then here’s what to know about plastic surgery for teens and our experienced approach.
One of the most important parts of our consultation process is learning more about a patient’s reasons for pursuing surgery. If your teen’s self-esteem is affected by a particular physical feature, surgical correction may be a good option. For example, correction of prominent ears, gynecomastia, or breast asymmetry may help teens feel more “normal” and improve their self-confidence and social interactions. Some patients even have physical discomfort that can be alleviated by plastic surgery. A common example of this is large breast size. Breast reduction surgery not only improves physical symptoms, such as back, neck, and shoulder pain, but it can also improve emotional health in young women who feel like their large breasts attract unwanted attention. If, however, your teen is following a trend or looking for recognition or affirmation from their peers, surgery may not be a good option. Many cosmetic enhancements (such as breast augmentation, body contouring, and facial fillers) are better performed in adults, after the body and mind have fully matured.
There are risks that come with any surgery, and your teen should be able to fully understand them. We spend a considerable amount of time during consultations discussing risks and whether the risks are acceptable for the desired outcome. If we determine your teen is not mature enough to grasp the risks and possible complications, we may recommend that surgery be postponed. Additionally, if your teen’s schedule is too busy to allow for our suggested recovery period, we may also recommend that they abstain from surgery. Your teen should be fully committed prior to undergoing their chosen procedure in order to achieve the best outcome.
Supporting your teen in their decision to undergo plastic surgery can be a new and difficult experience, so we recommend partnering with a board-certified plastic surgeon. To schedule a consultation and discuss your options, contact us by calling (802) 213-4284 or filling out our online contact form.