Teenagers Getting Plastic Surgery

Should they use it to enhance their body image?

Thesis:

Teenagers should be able to use plastic surgery because it's a personal choice and can improve their self esteem; however, they should be mature enough to understand the consequences of their permanent decision.
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It's a Personal Choice

Plastic surgery is someone's own decision, and if their parents consent to it then it should be allowed.


  • The ASPS has no formal position on plastic surgery for teenagers. As with any surgery, parental consent is required for all plastic surgery procedures performed on teens younger than 18.
  • While parental support is essential, the teenager's own desire for plastic surgery must be clearly expressed and repeated over a period of time


Plastic surgery is a safe and effective way to fix someone's flaws.


  • Patients should be sure their plastic surgeon is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS).
  • ASPS requires that all members who perform surgery under anesthesia must do so in a facility that meets all of the criteria required.

It Improves Self Esteem

Plastic surgery can enhance teenager's body image and can fix something that causes them to feel insecure.


  • "My life became easier because of a very simple procedure," Scott wrote his doctor years later. "I could have lived my life with big ears, but I didn't have to. The fact that I was able to become so comfortable gave me the freedom to be a very open person." (Scott)
  • Child plastic surgeon Dr. Frederick Lukash says “ But for legitimate physical abnormalities that affect the way the child feels and is treated by others--unusually large breasts on boys or girls, cleft lip, scar damage, ears that stick out, even an excessively large nose--surgery may prove life-altering.”


Although getting plastic surgery isn't the best choice for everyone, it can make many teenagers feel better about themselves.


  • Now that surgery has increased her breast size from an A to a C cup, Mast said, she no longer feels self-conscious about how her clothes fit or in comparison to her more developed younger sister. (Crystal Mast)

Only if the Teenager is Mature Enough

Plastic surgery on teenagers should only be implemented when they understand the consequences of their permanent decision.


  • Dr. Lukash states "if you're wondering whether plastic surgery is right for your child, the answer is not simple. It's going to take a lot of research and thought. "
  • It depends on "the child, his reasons for wanting surgery, whether he understands the risks involved, whether his concerns will be addressed by surgery, and so much more." (Lukash)
  • Teenagers have to be mature before making this decision.

Works Cited:

1. Boodman, Sandra G. "For More Teenage Girls, Adult Plastic Surgery." Washington Post (Washington, DC). 26 Oct. 2004: A.1. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 31 Jan. 2014.

2. Schulte, Fred, and Jenni Bergal. "Cosmetic Surgery: Marketing Blitz Entices Patients." Sun-Sentinel (Ft. Lauderdale, FL). Dec. 1 1998: 1A+. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 31 Jan. 2014.

3. Brochu, Nicole. "More Kids Undergoing Plastic Surgery." Sun-Sentinel. 14 Mar. 2011: B.1. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 31 Jan. 2014.