In the Mind of Gabi


Gabi Criscuolo

Everyone can be self-conscious sometimes. It can feel like everyone stares or makes fun of certain attributes. Maybe it’s a big nose or an excessive overbite; they are features that can’t be changed. Or can they? According to data the American Society of Plastic Surgeons there were 230,617 teen cosmetic procedures in 2011. Cosmetic surgery should only be an option to teens when it causes them physical or mental health problems.

Allowing teens the option of cosmetic surgery causes issues that are more than just skin deep. These issues can cut deep into the mind. When a young girl looks at herself and sees a body that isn’t the way she wants, it can cause mental problems. A study done by UH College of Education examined the impact of teasing on adolescent girls, specifically as predictors of disordered eating behaviors. They studied 135 eleven year olds, 80% of which were considered overweight. Among all of the girls more than half of them were unhappy with their bodies and began developing eating disorders.

When a little girl who hasn’t gone through puberty looks at her body and thinks she is fat or underdeveloped in this world of plastic surgery, she will end up trying to seek the wrong solutions. Most plastic surgeries in the past few years have not been to fix a problem, but to enhance a feature. Data given by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons showed that in 2015, cosmetic procedures that were performed on their patients between the ages of 13 and 19, were 65,000 surgical procedures such as rhinoplasty, breast augmentation, botox, and tummy tucks out of 226,000 cosmetic procedures.

In the instance of Rhinoplasty, one of the most popular types of cosmetic surgery, teens run the risk of being unhappy with the results. Although imaging technology can provide a detailed picture of what the new nose will look like, a new nose will be seen differently once completed on the patient. The “quick fix” solution is a terrible idea for teens. Adolescents are still growing, and if a teen decides to get a nose job and their face grows, the nose will end up being disproportionate. This will cause the teen to be unhappy with their looks again and lead them to want to get more surgery.

Due to the growing numbers of teen cosmetic surgeries and procedures, more mental problems have been developing and more money has been spent. The world of plastic surgery is expanding. My worry is the whole world will be stitched and pinned up into fake people full of saline and silicone. Cosmetic surgery should only be an option to teens when it causes them physical or mental health problems. If it becomes acceptable for teens to fix whatever they want with a knife, who knows what they will think of doing next?