Teens and plastic surgery is a topic we hear about more and more.
You may be surprised to learn that, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, those in the 13- 19 age range made up only 2 percent of the cosmetic procedures performed in America in 2014, the latest year full statistics are available.
Dr. Marc Klein, an Atlanta plastic surgeon at Premier Image Cosmetic & Laser Surgery, weighed in on what these statistics look like at his practice. He said that, like the national level, teenagers make up only about 2 percent of his patients, and he sees an average of 20 teens per year.
Klein has practiced plastic surgery for 19 years. Even though he does not see a lot of teenagers, he said the following procedures are the most common in that age group.
Nose reshapings (rhinoplasties)
While it is not a procedure he does, Klein said he would assume nose reshapings, or rhinoplasties, are the most common cosmetic procedures for teenagers. He said that if a doctor specializes in rhinoplasties, he will see twice as many teens as the average plastic surgeon. If you're considering rhinoplasty for your child, Klein said the mid- to late-teen years are actually a good time to do it, because the nose is already fully developed.
Male breast reductions (gynecomastias)
Klein said he sees about 10 teenage boys a year come in for gynecomastias, or male breast reductions. This procedure is common, he said, because some teen boys are too embarrassed to take their shirt off at the swimming pool or participate in gym class. Klein said boys may have feminine-looking breasts as a result of being overweight, or they may just have an abnormal development of some breast tissue.
While it’s not terribly common, Klein does perform some breast augmentations on teenage girls. He said this procedure is generally more popular among older teens, who come in after high school graduation or while they are in college.
Klein said he sees a few teenagers who are involved in dance or athletics come in for liposuction because they think their legs look too big. He said he also sees cases where the mother is the one pushing the teenager to have the procedure. Sometimes, the teen is obese, and the mother wants to give her a jump start on losing weight. Other times, the mother is just unhappy with something about her teenager’s appearance. Klein said he had one teenage girl come in for liposuction because of the way she fit in her jeans. He said it kind of bothered the teenager, but it was really the mother driving it.
If your child has an ear deformity, Klein recommends having a procedure done by the time he is in kindergarten. Not everyone is able to accomplish this, so occasionally, people will come in for the procedure as teenagers. Prominent ears are something that people may be teased about in during their adolescence.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.