The rhinoplasty procedure performed on teens is no different than the procedure performed on adults. There are, however, some important considerations to take into account when looking for a surgeon to perform a nose job on your teen.

First and foremost, the surgeon you choose should have experience performing facial plastic surgery on teens. The surgeon should also be board certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ABFPRS) and specialize in nose jobs. Most facial plastic surgeons are often board certified in otolaryngology (ear, nose and throat surgery) as well, which means that they have received extensive training with and have in-depth knowledge of the internal structure of the nose, not to mention its external appearance. These surgeons are trained to deal with both functional issues, such as breathing, and the external structures of the nose.


How to Find the Right Surgeon

To find a board certified facial plastic surgeon to perform your teen’s rhinoplasty, I recommend starting at the website of the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS), which has a useful surgeon locator. If you are in New York or elsewhere and are interested in scheduling a consultation for your teen with me, feel free to contact my office at any time.


When Do You Recommend a Teen Nose Job?

Candidacy for teenage rhinoplasty depends on age, maturity and other factors. I will not operate on teenage girls until they are about 15 or 16 or boys until they are around 17 or 18 year old, because the nose may not have fully developed. Rhinoplasty cannot be performed until the nose has reached its adult size.

Rhinoplasty for teens can be advisable for a variety of cosmetic purposes, including:

  • Reshaping the tip
  • Straightening the nose
  • Removing a hump or bump
  • Increasing or decreasing the nostrils
  • Changing the size of the nose
  • Altering the width of the bridge
  • Correcting wide or upturned nostrils
  • Asymmetry
  • Nasal deviation

The procedure can also be used to address structural issues that are causing congestion or affecting breathing, such as nasal valve collapse, and can fix problems stemming from previous nose surgeries (e.g., over-resection, nasal collapse).


Consult a Psychologist

I normally recommend that teens considering rhinoplasty consult with a child/teen psychologist before I conduct my own evaluation. It is very important to make sure that a teen is prepared for the procedure, both mentally and emotionally.

Both the psychologist and I will take as much time as necessary to ensure that the teen is mature enough to handle the risks and has realistic expectations; rhinoplasty will not transform a person’s life.

The psychologist and I will also want to make sure that the teen is seeking rhinoplasty of his/her own volition. If I suspect that someone is pressuring a potential patient of mine into having facial plastic surgery, I will not move forward with the procedure.

With teens, it is also worth pointing out that there is nothing wrong with waiting a few years.


What Situations Can Be Resolved Without Plastic Surgery?

Not all imperfections of the nose must be treated with plastic surgery. Some minor aesthetic issues can be addressed through non-invasive methods. Examples include a bump on the nose and minor nasal tip problems. Neurotoxin injections (Botox®, Dysport) can lift the tip, while fillers such as Restylane, Radiesse and Juvederm can add volume or smooth over bumps. However, these minimally invasive treatments cannot be used for more dramatic alterations such as reducing the size of the nose or tip, narrowing a wide nose or changing the nose’s inherent structure.


Be Cautious but Not Overprotective

While it is very important that teens and their parents realize that plastic surgery is real surgery, it is also important that parents listen to their teens and take their motivations for having rhinoplasty seriously. The psychologist and I will do a thorough evaluation to make sure that, from our perspective, your teen is ready to undergo the procedure. If we feel that a teen is mature enough, has a legitimate concern that can be addressed through facial plastic surgery, and is physically developed enough, this means that the teen is as qualified as any adult.


To learn more about teens and facial plastic surgery, contact my practice today.