Rhinoplasty surgery, also known as a “nose job,” is a popular and highly successful procedure for most patients. It is designed to improve the nasal structure for functional/medical reasons, cosmetic reasons, or both. Before the surgery can be performed, however, the surgeon may have to evaluate whether or not the nose has fully matured.
Is There an Ideal Age?
Age can play a significant role in evaluating nasal structure. Since facial maturity occurs at different rates among individuals, the nose can reach full maturity at anywhere from 15 to 20 years of age.
Once a person’s nose finishes its physical growth, they are a potential candidate for rhinoplasty. This means that the patient will have already gone through puberty. Generally, girls will become candidates for rhinoplasty before boys. This is usually true for emotional development as well.
Emotional maturity will help patients set reasonable expectations and manage their recovery more responsibly. A rhinoplasty procedure makes small improvements that can lead to dramatic results. This can be an emotional time for those who are still going through hormonal fluctuations.
Regardless of age, patients should have a thorough understanding of what’s involved with the procedure. This includes not only the surgery but the recovery period as well. For teenagers, taking a week off for recovery is best done in the summer.
It’s important to keep in mind that most rhinoplasty patients are adults over the age of 18. Younger patients will need to obtain parental permission, in addition to approval by a plastic surgeon. Understandably, most parents want their teens to wait a bit before choosing to undergo rhinoplasty.
While this type of procedure can be performed at almost any adult age, the ideal time for rhinoplasty is when the patient is in their twenties or thirties. At this point, the nose has fully developed and the patient can easily heal without the likelihood of medication interactions or additional complications.
Am I Too Young for a Nose Job?
There is no maximum age limit for rhinoplasty procedures. Having a rhinoplasty surgery at a young age, however, can have lasting consequences. Before getting a nose job, the nose must be fully developed.
Those who have not yet reached puberty are too young for the procedure. This is true for both boys and girls. Because the nose is still growing, surgery could negatively alter natural development.
Emotional maturity is also a factor. A teenager with the emotional maturity to handle a dramatic alteration in appearance is necessary for a positive outcome. A candidate should fully understand what surgery means and how it will affect them in the future.
Boys that are under the age of 17 or 18 are often too young for rhinoplasty surgery. This is because boys develop at a slightly slower rate than girls and may need a few more years to reach physical and emotional maturity. Depending on the individual, these ages can vary.
If a candidate has already gone through puberty, demonstrates emotional maturity, and has plenty of support, they will probably meet the age requirement. Rhinoplasty can be appropriate for the right teenage patients.
Many teenagers are unhappy with their noses, but most do not end up opting for surgery before the age of 18, due to the need for parental permission (and often, financing). Regardless of age, however, this procedure can be performed for medical or cosmetic reasons. For teenagers, rhinoplasty is often performed as elective surgery, but may also be functional or performed to correct defects in the nose.
Reasons for Rhinoplasty
Appearances are especially important to most teenagers. A large nasal hump or drooping nasal tip can be embarrassing for adults and teenagers alike, and many people want to fix their facial symmetry with rhinoplasty.
Decreasing the size of the nostrils or straightening the bridge are common rhinoplasty techniques for making the face look more balanced. Issues that pertain to the shape of the nose may or may not fall under the category of medical surgery. If the issue is purely cosmetic, the procedure is not considered functional.
A nose job that is designed to correct an injury or fix airway obstruction is often a necessity. This can improve the ability to breathe normally and reduce any potential pain from injury. A teenage rhinoplasty procedure can help with some common issues that affect the quality of life.
For most teenagers, the nose is fully developed by their late teens. After puberty, it is unlikely that the nose will continue to noticeably grow. Although an injury could potentially reshape the nose, the nasal structure is typically permanent by this point.
The nose is made of skin, bone, and cartilage, which is slightly denser than skin, but much softer than bone. As a person ages, the skin’s elasticity decreases and can cause a weaker cartilage frame. This change occurs with age and does not affect the overall nasal structure.
Techniques used during rhinoplasty surgery are the same for both adults and teenagers. If a person has a deviated septum, this procedure is considered functional, as it can address breathing issues. Although the surgery is the same, insurance may cover this type of nose job.
A rhinoplasty procedure is permanent and can change the way the patient views themselves or how others see them. A typical nose job takes approximately two or three hours to complete and does not need to be conducted in a hospital or inpatient setting.
Rhinoplasty patients need to be aware that the initial recovery time can take weeks. For teens, this is typically done during a vacation period when they will not need to go to school.
Am I Too Old for Rhinoplasty?
Although there is no age limit for a rhinoplasty procedure, it is often easier to get a nose job before the age of 60. The aging nose can create new challenges for surgeons that may require additional alterations to the nose structure. After the age of 60, physiological changes in the nose are taken into consideration.
Rhinoplasty surgery is considered extremely safe. Some people require a nose job later in life due to breathing issues. When undergoing this type of surgery at an older age, patients can improve both functional and cosmetic issues.
Contact Us Today
If you are interested in learning more about the rhinoplasty procedure, please contact us today at the Glasgold Group in Princeton, NJ. An initial consultation can help us determine whether age is a potential concern in your unique situation. Rhinoplasty is safe and effective for addressing a range of concerns.