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Should age be a factor when considering plastic surgery?

Posted on Sep 14, 2014 at


There are a variety of factors to consider when thinking about plastic surgery, including lifestyle, genetics and overall health. One such factor that has received a great deal of press recently is age, as many people are pondering whether teens and seniors are viable candidates for certain cosmetic procedures. Like many other things that may influence whether a surgeon will agree to perform a procedure on a patient, age must be carefully assessed alongside ones physical health and mental state of mind. Although some surgeons may be hesitant to perform a particular operation on a person due to their age, most are more concerned with a snapshot of the candidate as a whole. Teens going under the knife

According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, in 2013, more than 113,000 procedures were performed on individuals under the age of 18 – a figure that comprised about 1 percent of the total number of plastic surgeries sought that year. However, despite media reports on teen trends, the number of teenagers opting for cosmetic surgery has actually declined in the past several years. ASAPS reports that in 2002, people under 18 comprised 3.2 percent of all procedures performed – a percentage that has steadily declined in the last twelve years. While some people view teenage plastic surgery in a negative light, the practice can be extremely positive for those who have been properly evaluated. Cosmetic procedures for teenagers generally address features the patient has been self-conscious about for their entire lives, such as asymmetries or abnormalities. Some of the most popular surgical operations performed in 2013 among this demographic included otoplasties, rhinoplasties and breast reductions. Otoplasty, or ear surgery, remains one of the most popular among individuals under 18, as surgeons generally recommend this procedure when a child nears 5 or 6 years of age. Since ears have reached the pinnacle of their growth by this time, many surgeons recommend receiving corrective surgery before the child starts primary school.

Plastic surgery during the golden years

ASAPS statistics reveal that about 9.7 percent of individuals who received surgical or non-surgical cosmetic procedures last year were 65 or older. Age can bring with it a number of factors – namely, chronic illness and limited mobility – that make surgery risky, but with a thorough physical and mental evaluation, doctors can assess safety on a case-by-case basis. An article in The New York Times reports that cosmetic enhancement can actually be a boon to seniors looking for a boost in self-esteem. One Boca Raton surgeon told the news source that the number of over-70 patients that he sees has been on a steady uptick. These people are healthy and want to be an active part of society, said Daniel Man, MD, according to the Times.

Considerations to make while assessing age

Patients who request plastic surgeries should undergo an assessment with a board-certified plastic surgeon, as this professional can help determine which procedures are best suited for an individual. During these sessions, the doctor will conduct a series of assessments to gauge the person’s eligibility for surgery, including mental health, physical maturity, expectations and risks.


This article was originally published by SmartBeautyGuide

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