Nose Jobs for Teens: What Makes Sense?
By Elliot Jacobs, MD
Nose surgery has been popular with both men and women for decades. It’s also sought after by teens; in fact, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, nearly 10,000 patients 18 years or younger undergo nose jobs in the U. S. each year.
If you’re the parent of a teen who’s interested in rhinoplasty, you have a lot to think about. Plastic surgery is a big step—do nose jobs for teens really make sense? Does your son or daughter have appropriate goals in mind? What’s the right age for teen rhinoplasty?
The Benefits of Teen Nose Jobs
For mature teens with large or misshapen noses, rhinoplasty can be life changing. Given the extent to which some kids
suffer bullying and ridicule in today’s society, a nose job can help a teen gain self-confidence at this formative time. Rhinoplasty can enable the right young patient move forward with more important aspects of life than worrying about their appearance.
Of course if your teen suffers an injury to their nose, rhinoplasty may be a must. Whether the motivation is to improve form or function, as a parent you can rest assured that a skilled, experienced plastic surgeon will deliver natural looking results.
When to Raise the Red Flag
Not every person is a good candidate for plastic surgery—the same holds true for teenagers. Rhinoplasty may be an option for those who are not seeking to change their looks dramatically but to refine and reshape their nose to fit the rest of their features.
If your son or daughter is interested in a nose job in order to look like a celebrity or erase traces of their ethnicity, counsel them to wait. Remind them that this is a time of life when it’s especially easy to get caught up in fads or ideas about what’s cool at the moment. And while you can change your mind when it comes to clothing and hairstyles, you want to avoid regrets when it comes to cosmetic surgery.
Some people, teens included, suffer from a condition called body dysmorphic disorder, or BDD. If your teen shows signs of being obsessed with their appearance and feels significant distress over a flaw that seems minor or non-existent, consider counseling.
The Right Age for Teen Rhinoplasty
When you and your son or daughter agree that nose surgery is a reasonable option, the bottom line question then becomes, what’s the right age for a teen to get a nose job?
In terms of physical development, the right age is when a youngster is close to being fully grown. For girls, the minimum age for a nose job is usually 15-16. For boys, 16-17 years old is about the right age for rhinoplasty.
It’s important to gauge your teenager’s level of emotional maturity as well. In addition to having the right expectations for results, your teen should demonstrate that they understand all aspects of the procedure, be eager to follow post surgical instructions carefully and be prepared that he or she may still have to handle comments from others who may notice the change.
Don’t worry that you have to make this journey alone. That same skilled, experienced plastic surgeon who will deliver great results will walk you and your teen through the factors to consider and help you—not push you—to the right decisions.