Can girls under 18 get plastic surgery in Australia? The short answer is “yes.”
The long answer is “yes, but it will take some time.”
In October 2016, the Medical Board of Australia introduced new guidelines for Australian teenagers who want to undergo plastic surgery.
The guidelines require teens to undergo a psychological assessment and a three-month cooling period after their initial consultation, all before the procedure can take place.
The introduction of these guidelines is part of the efforts to contain the booming $1 billion industry, which may prove harmful to teenagers in the long run.
“We are aware there are more and more young people – young women in particular – seeking out cosmetic procedures,” Dr. Joanna Flynn, chair of the Medical Board of Australia told The Weekly in 2016.
“The issues we are most concerned about are maturity in making decisions, vulnerability to peer pressure and issues around body image and self-esteem,” she added. “We think it’s essential people have sufficient time to think it through.”
Experts agree, however, that for the correct teenage patients, cosmetic surgery can contribute greatly to the their physical and emotional development.
“Unlike adults who may elect cosmetic surgery for that ‘wow’ factor to stand out in a crowd, to be rejuvenated and get noticed, kids have a different mantra. They do it to fit in,” said Dr. Frederick Lukash, an American plastic surgeon who wrote a book about how teenagers can benefit from plastic surgery.
“The power of plastic surgery to restore self-esteem, self confidence, and self-empowerment to kids is incredible,” he added.
Given all these considerations, it is important then that potential teenage clients are properly oriented about their choices and the gravity of their decisions.
Generally, teens as young as 14 or 16 can legally give consent to any medical treatment, although regulations vary from state to state.
To learn more about cosmetic surgery, read through this quick guide to know if cosmetic surgery is a good option for you.
What are good reasons for teens to get cosmetic surgery?
Cosmetic surgery is plastic surgery for aesthetic purposes.
Cosmetic treatments and procedures, as long as they are recommended and supervised by expert doctors, are good options for teenagers looking to boost their self-esteem.
For instance, teens with overly large breasts may opt for breast reduction surgery so that their body may look better proportioned. This can also help them avoid unwanted attention, feel more confident while exercising and find better-fitting clothes.
Cosmetic surgery can double as a way to improve health in general, too. Overly large breasts can lead to bad posture, as well as neck and back pain for teenagers with small to medium frames.
Another example is the treatment of excessive acne. This will do wonders in boosting anyone’s self-esteem, which will lead to better inter-personal relationships and an improved social life, which is essential to a person’s development during adolescence.
What are the considerations before deciding to get cosmetic surgery?
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery has the following guidelines for teenagers considering plastic surgery:
- The teenager initiates the request. While parental support is essential, the teenager’s own desire for plastic surgery must be clearly expressed and repeated over a period of time.
- The teenager has realistic goals. The young person must appreciate both the benefits and limitations of plastic surgery, avoiding unrealistic expectations about life changes that will occur as a result of the procedure.
- The teenager has sufficient maturity. Teenagers must be able to tolerate the discomfort and temporary disfigurement of a surgical procedure. Plastic surgery is not recommended for teens who are prone to mood swings or erratic behavior, who are abusing drugs and/or alcohol, or who are being treated for clinical depression or other mental illness.
The most important things to consider in any cosmetic surgery procedure are the safety and the happiness of the patient.
A cosmetic doctor may turn down any requests for procedures that they deem unrealistic or harmful for their clients.This is why it is absolutely necessary to choose only expert doctors for any procedure, as their guidance and expertise are key to any safe and successful surgery.
How do I choose a cosmetic surgeon?
The cosmetic surgeon you decide to work with should be properly certified and accredited.
The American Board of Plastic Surgery has the following requirements when accrediting a physician as a plastic surgeon:
- Must have graduated from an accredited medical school
- Must have completed at least 6 years of surgical training, with at least 3 years in plastic surgery
- Must have passed comprehensive written and oral exams
It is also important for potential patients to research and review the clinic of their chosen cosmetic doctors.
Make sure the doctors’ accreditations, affiliations and certifications are listed on their website.
What are the most common cosmetic surgery procedures that teenagers request for?
Some of the most common procedures requested by teenagers are:
- Injectable fillers
- Breast augmentation and reduction (Boob job)
- Rhinoplasty (Nose job)
- Abdominoplasty (Tummy tuck)
How much will cosmetic surgery cost me?
Costs for cosmetic surgery procedures depend largely on the doctor’s experience and qualifications, the location of the clinic or facility, and on the kind of procedure you are going for.
Lip fillers and dermal fillers begin at $395 per mL. Non-surgical nose jobs begin at $695 per mL. Breast reduction for men can cost as much as $5,500.
The best way to find out how much you need to shell out is to consult your doctor.
Again, choose your doctors wisely. Professional practitioners will be upfront about their rates as they will want the best for their patients, whereas others may look to cash in as much as they can from their patients.
Where’s the best place to get cosmetic surgery in Australia?
For accredited doctors and the best prices available in the country, Skin Club – Cosmetic Doctors is ready to give expert advice to anyone aiming to look their best.
With years of experience under their belt, Skin Club doctors have fine-tuned their procedure, beginning with an obligation-Consultation that ensures each patient will have a personalised treatment plan.
To book an appointment, simply call (03) 9999 7368 or drop by the clinic at Studio 1 150A Chapel Street, Windsor.