By Linda Hepler, BSN, RN
hese days it seems that evenwhen you’re young, you’renot young enough. Just thispast spring, Good Morning America viewers across the nationwatched in jaw-dropping horror asthe mom o an 8-year-old girl activein the child pageant circuit describedinjecting her daughter with Botoxshe purchased on the Internet. Whenasked why she was getting thepainul shots to her cheeks, lips andorehead, the child said, “I don’t thinkwrinkles are nice. It hurts. But I getused to it.”While this is clearly an extremecase, more and more children,primarily teens, are getting suchcosmetic procedures, rom Botoxto breast augmentation. In act, the American Society o Plastic Surgeons(ASPS) estimates that more than218,000 cosmetic procedures,both minimally-invasive as well assurgical, were perormed on childrenages 13-19 in 2010 – compared toapproximately 14,000 in 1996.What gives? “Teens are so muchmore aware o their looks thesedays,” says Steven Pearlman, MD, aboard-certied acial plastic surgeonbased in New York. “This is a unctiono the media emphasis placed onbeauty.”
Cosmetic procedures may preventcomplexes, but i you’re thinking thatthis is "shallow and ridiculous" andthat kids should just put up with ahook nose or lop ears and learn that“it’s how you look on the inside thatcounts” – just as we did – you may
TOP 5 TEEN PROCEDURES IN 2010
According to the American Society o Plastic Surgeons, (ASPS), the top ve cosmeticprocedures perormed on teens ages 13-19 in 2010 were:1.
Laser hair removal
– 66,664 teens underwent laser hair removal, which involves theuse o laser energy to heat and infame the hair ollicle. This causes the ollicle to stopproducing hair or a period o time.2.
Nose reshaping (rhinoplasty)
– 35,005 kids went under the knie or a nose job, asurgery that can enhance the appearance and proportion o the nose in relation to theace. A rhinoplasty can also correct structural deormities that may impair breathing.3.
Laser treatment o leg veins
– 20,991 adolescents had laser treatment o unsightlyleg veins. In this procedure, laser energy heats the veins, causing them to seal o andeventually dissolve.4.
Laser skin resuracing
– was done on 19,466 teens. Laser skin resuracing helpsdamaged skin (in teens, oten acne scars) by heating the damaged cells and vaporizingthem, exposing the smoother skin underneath.5.
Breast reduction in males
– 13,530 young men had breast reduction or a conditioncalled gynecomastia, a swelling o the breast tissue in boys. While this is a commonproblem in puberty due to hormonal changes, and oten goes away on its own, some-times only surgery can correct the situation.
THE PRICEOF VANITY
SHOULD TEENS UNDERGOCOSMETIC SURGERY?
Photo by Taylor Bartram