Teens Are Being Manipulated!

How Media Influences Teens To Get Plastic Surgery


In a teen's daily life, they may go on social media or take a peek at a magazine and encounter a picture of the "perfect body" without even realizing that it may have been airbrushed or digitally altered. While discussing these pictures with friends, their idea of the ideal self-image is manipulated into a unrealistic and unhealthy dream. For instance, the media displayed pop rocker Ashlee Simpson and High School Musical star Ashley Tisdale changing their look dramatically with a nose job. Shows such as Extreme Makeover make it seem as if everyone is getting cosmetic surgery. ("Teens Under the Knife") Also, numbers of magazines target young females and support the idea that female happiness and success are tied to physical appearance ("Mass Media and Its Influence on the Adolescent Mind") Furthermore, some of the most common cosmetic surgeries teenagers have done are laser hair removal, dermabrasion, chemical skin peels, ear reshaping, and nose jobs. (Lusted 44) With these changes come risks, but even so, people still choose to get them, aided by the pressure from society to become beautiful and stand out.
Media's Effects on Teen Girl's Body Image & Self Esteem
Media's influence on adolescent girls makes them think about how they can look like the airbrushed models they see on television. This may lead them to get plastic surgery at an early age.


Teens should not be able to have plastic surgery since they can be easily influenced by outside sources and they are not full developed physically.


Although plastic surgery is definitely not the best alternative when looking to improve one's physical appearance, it can have some benefits.

Teens are often bullied in school because they don't have certain looks. For instance, they may be flat chested or have a big nose or pointy ears. (Lusted 43) So to improve their appearance and boost their self esteem they reach for cosmetic surgery.


"There are two types of plastic surgery; reconstructive and cosmetic." Plastic surgery for correcting disfiguration from an accident or illness is reconstructive. (Libal 103)


However, the risks and negative aspects of the process are much greater.

There are many negative aspects to having plastic surgery on a teens body. To begin with, doctors suggest that adolescents should avoid plastic surgery during their time of physical and mental development because during this time of growth their physical features will likely change. For instance, in a year, the changes they may have made with surgery may not look the same on their further developed body. ("Teens Under the Knife") This would not only be a waste of money but also a disappointment to the teenager. Additionally, there are many risks that come with such changes. They include permanent disfigurement, breathing or heart problems due to allergic reactions to anesthesia, heavy bleeding, infection, and even death. (Lusted 13,48,49) With so many drawbacks, it is questionable as to why so many people continue to turn to cosmetic surgery. The decision of having it done may be regretted in the future.


For teens, their looks may become an obsession. Some may resort to plastic surgery for any kind of discomfort they have with their appearance because it may not be considered attractive in society today, or just to stay up with the latest trends. Unfortunately, the results may not be what they expected. The image doctors show you of how you will look after having the surgery is only speculative. (Libal 110) This means it is possible that they will be disappointed with their physical appearance even after they have had surgery or regret ever making the choice of having it done. And, since they are still mentally developing, they may not be mature enough to handle it. But these are not the only possible cons of plastic surgery. For not having certain features that the media describes as what a beautiful person should have, teens may be bullied. Furthermore, due to this bullying, teenagers may blindly have plastic surgery just to have their peers admire them. ("Teens Under the Knife") However, there lives may still be the same even after, so they will only be left with dissatisfaction. Thus, doctors advise teenagers to carefully think about it before deciding to go through with the process. Teens must realize the limitations of plastic surgery and with that, they may also be able to find a better and less risky alternative for their concern.


Teens lack the mental maturity to not be influenced by the media and other outside sources, and have yet to fully develop physically. Therefore, they should not be allowed to have plastic surgery. It would be best if an age restriction was put on plastic surgery so that teens will be prevented from possible harm. The age people may first be allowed to have cosmetic surgery should be after the human body has fully developed. Also, by the time they are finally allowed to get surgery they may no longer face problems like bullying that they had before. This will save people from wasting money on unnecessary pain or unwanted results.

Works Cited

"Mass Media and Its Influence on the Adolescent Mind." Macalester College. Benjie

Achtenberg Macalester College, 2006. Web. 17 Feb. 2015.

"Teens Under the Knife." Sirs Discover. Current Events (Vol. 108, No. 1), Web. 8 Sep. 2008. 6

Feb. 2015.

Libal, Autumn. Can I Change The Way I Look?. Philadelphia: Mason Crest Publishers, 2005.


Lusted, Marcia A., Cosmetic Surgery. Edina: ABDO Publishing Company, 2010. Print.