Think plastic surgery to prevent bullying is all just media hype? Don’t be so quick to judge a book by its cover, or a child by his mother! Well-meaning, psychologically aware parents have been choosing plastic surgery for their children to help maintain self-confidence and prevent bullying for decades… D-E-C-A-D-E-S! It is nothing new. Sometimes, starlets’ plastic surgery can seem self-indulgent or vain, a purely cosmetic tool. It’s important to remember, though, that much of plastic surgery focuses on reconstruction. No one questions the “necessity” of plastic surgery for those with burns, clefts, and scars left from cancers–and for good reason. But the cosmetic benefits of these procedures are undeniable.
Take, for example, a child with protruding ears. Ear pinning (otoplasty) can restore the ear size, shape, and position to normalcy. After the age of six, otoplasty is safe, fast, and virtually painless. So why subject a child to a lifetime of “Dumbo” jokes? An otoplasty in an otherwise physically, emotionally, and socially healthy child can be a surefire way to prevent bullying. The same is true of exaggerated nasal features. Oversized, crooked, or oddly shaped noses are often a source of relentless teasing among children. Surgery that restores normal nasal structure and function has long been accepted by well-adjusted teens, their parents, and doctors, so why stand by and watch a child experience a painful loss of confidence? While surgeries to improve the appearance of a child’s ears or nose have long been popular, a newer cosmetic procedure is also on the rise. Those who suffer from unwanted hair, such as girls with upper lip hair or thick sideburns, may want a lasting solution to avoid being taunted by their peers. Laser hair removal is now becoming a more common alternative to waxing, depilation creams, and the dreadful shaving.
External beauty is first and foremost a reflection of inner health and wellness. But when physical appearance does not reflect the inner self, surgery is the necessary option for improvement. In fact, it can strengthen self-confidence and prevent bullying. Young skin is quite elastic. It is quite forgiving, and it heals quickly. Emotional scars from bullying make their mark for life.