Amy Arnold of Rolesville, North Carolina is like most young women her age. She strives to fit in and be accepted by her peers. Arnold grew up hating her prominent nose – an attribute that caused years and years of intense ridicule from classmates. The bullying didn’t start in her teenage years, but much earlier. Arnold says she can remember coming home in tears as early as second grade, and crying herself to sleep.
“They were like, ‘You look like Toucan Sam from the Fruit Loops box,’” lamented Arnold, who became so depressed that she even contemplated suicide. Going to school became a tortuous daily event, one which she dreaded. In a desperate attempt to end a vicious cycle, Arnold began searching the web. She discovered inspiring YouTube videos documenting others’ experiences with teen rhinoplasty – plastic surgery on the nose – and decided that nose reshaping might transform her life for the better. As it turns out, her parents agreed.
Teenage bullying drives young women to plastic surgery
Feelings of insecurity and embarrassment about her most prominent facial feature were enough to make Arnold reach out for help. Her parents had initial doubts, but after meeting with a local plastic surgeon who saw a level of maturity in Arnold, all hesitation was gone.
Rhinoplasty for anyone, let alone an adolescent, is a life-changing experience. “It’s not like getting a haircut. If you don’t like it, you can let your hair grow back and try again,” said Dr. Stein, who performed Arnold’s nose surgery. While both patient and doctor concede that plastic surgery should never be considered a panacea for bullying, in this particular case, it truly worked.
“It’s like I’m looking at a new person and a better person. I’m more confident. I actually can talk to people and not be shy. I can make friends. I just feel great about myself,” said Arnold after her operation.
Not content to just bask in her newfound self-esteem, the teenager documented the whole ordeal on YouTube, as a means to give inspiration and hope to others facing a similar plight. There are thousands of teenage girls who have isolated themselves to escape the emotional pain of constant teasing and bullying – but is cosmetic surgery the solution?
Manhattan plastic surgeon Dr. B. Aviva Preminger weighs in on the topic of teen plastic surgery: “For some adolescents who demonstrate emotional maturity, plastic surgery can give them a new self- image and a more positive perspective on life. Although you are simply altering a nose or ear, the makeover is not just aesthetic; it can boost overall confidence and help diminish depression and anxiety.”
Teen plastic surgery in NYC
Dr. Preminger is reluctant to operate on teenagers who don’t have realistic expectations about what surgery can and cannot do for them, or those who don’t possess a high level of maturity and understanding regarding the limitations of rhinoplasty or other facial procedures.
If you have a teen who is considering plastic surgery in NYC, and you’d like to schedule a private consultation with Dr. Preminger, please call 212.706.1900.
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