Is my teen ready for a rhinoplasty?

Teenage body insecurities are incredibly common. Every parent is probably aware of some features their child would change if they could. Because the face is so visible, and the nose is its centerpiece, much cosmetic attention is placed on the nose. Has your child been asking about rhinoplasty surgery? Before dismissing the idea out of hand, read on and consider all the possible benefits along with the risks.

Parents often feel that teasing and body image issues are simply a part of growing up. While there is value in learning to love what you have and to tune out the critics, there are times when a small operation can lead to a dramatic improvement in your teen’s self esteem.

The nose reaches maturity around 15-17 years old, at which point it is safe to operate on the nose. At this point, the shape of the nose is unlikely to change much over time. Many patients who have rhinoplasties later in life are looking to resolve issues that have plagued them their entire lives. If your teen feels strongly about a hump or a bulbous tip or the size of their nose at this age, they may very well maintain that opinion throughout their life.

Of course, there are some special considerations when it comes to teens. If performed at too early of an age before the nose has reached its full growth, additional changes may occur with age that could negatively impact the rhinoplasty result.  Furthermore, it’s not just a question of whether or not your teen is physically ready for surgery. Candidates for surgery, particularly younger candidates, must also be emotionally ready to handle the surgery and the result.  It’s important to gauge whether or not your teen understands and accepts that the changes can be significant and permanent. It’s also essential that they be mature enough to handle the recovery process. Even adults can get a bit blue when faced with the initial bruising and swelling immediately after surgery as well as the required downtime.

Cosmetic concerns can cause a great deal of grief for teens. Resolving some of their physical issues can empower them with a new level of self confidence that can improve all aspects of their lives. Of course, that is not to diminish the risks involved, as rhinoplasty is a surgical procedure. It is important to be sure you find a doctor who will work with your teen to find a look they will be happy with for the rest of their lives, and who will spend the time to be sure they understand everything that is involved in the procedure. Once you and your teen understand all the risks, you will be able, together, to make an educated decision.

If you are interested in taking the next step towards rhinoplasty for your teen, contact Bay Area facial plastic surgeon Dr. Sheldon Kabaker at 800-914-4247 to set up a consultation.

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