Cosmetic Surgery Tips

Can you get a tummy tuck at 16

Can you get a tummy tuck at 16?

Yes, you can. You just need to be patient and do your research before choosing your surgeon.

The first thing you should know is that there are two types of tummy tucks: open and closed. An open tummy tuck is when the surgeon makes an incision that goes around your belly button, while a closed tummy tuck doesn’t require this incision.

You might think that an open tummy tuck is more dangerous than a closed one because it requires more cutting and stitching, but this isn’t necessarily true. In fact, some people prefer an open procedure because it allows them to see what’s happening during their surgery and how their body is being repaired afterward. However, others prefer a closed procedure because it reduces risk for infection and results in faster recovery time.

Your best bet for finding out which type of procedure is right for you is to talk with your surgeon about the pros and cons of each option before deciding which one best fits with your goals for getting rid of excess fat from around your midsection (or whatever part of your body needs tightening).

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Can you get a tummy tuck at 16

Even though women and men often think they’re too old for cosmetic surgery, age really isn’t a critical factor when I assess whether someone is a good surgical candidate. That’s especially true for my tummy tuck patients in Austin, many of whom believe abdominoplasty is a “young person’s procedure.” Not true. A patient’s overall health is much more important than their age.

People consider having a tummy tuck for many different reasons and at various stages of life. Women who have just finished having children often want to regain their pre-pregnancy figures. Some patients who’ve undergone weight loss surgery want to remove excess abdominal skin.

I’ll describe below the characteristics of an ideal tummy tuck candidate, regardless of age, and how recovery and results can vary for younger and older patients.

What qualifies you for a tummy tuck?

When I consult with women and men considering tummy tuck surgery, we discuss their cosmetic goals, and I perform a thorough physical examination to assess overall health and suitability for tummy tuck surgery. I also review each patient’s medical history. Some older patients may be better candidates than their younger counterparts because they’re in better health. Being a non-smoker and exercising regularly are essential criteria for anyone considering a tummy tuck.

What is the best age for a tummy tuck?

I evaluate each patient’s situation. A woman in her 20s, 30s, or 40s who wants a tummy tuck after having children may also be considering cosmetic breast surgery or other procedures as part of a mommy makeover. In this situation, the ideal candidate should be as close as possible to her ideal weight and not plan to have more children.

Older patients, say in their 50s or 60s, should also be close to their ideal weight and have healthy lifestyle habits to ensure they get the best results.

For example, one of the patients I feature on my A Surgeon’s Perspective on Tummy Tuck Cases page is a woman in her 60s who pursued her career and raised children before choosing to get a tummy tuck. Over the years, she remained in good physical shape by exercising and watching what she ate, but she was always self-conscious about her abdominal area. Because of her good health and physical condition, she was an appropriate candidate for tummy tuck surgery.

As a side note, I find working with more mature women in cases like this to be quite satisfying. For many women, this is often the first time in years that they’ve made their needs a priority, and I’m excited about helping them achieve the appearance they desire.

Tummy tuck before and after

*Keep in mind that each patient is unique and your results may vary.

Does age affect tummy tuck recovery?

After cosmetic surgery, each patient’s recovery is unique. People of all ages who are in excellent physical health prior to surgery tend to bounce back more quickly from the procedure and have less risk of post-op complications.

There are, however, a few general distinctions affecting the recovery of younger and older patients. For example, younger patients tend to recover more quickly than older patients. That doesn’t mean older men and women shouldn’t get tummy tucks, but it’s helpful to know what to expect.

Also, patients with young children at home need to understand that they won’t be able to lift toddlers during the recovery period. Restrictions on lifting are something to consider if your job or lifestyle requires heavy lifting, but remember, that is only temporary.

Is getting a tummy tuck worth it? What are results like?

Tummy tuck surgery results will vary depending on a person’s age. For example, a younger patient can expect to see very smooth abdominal skin after abdominoplasty. However, an older patient’s skin is typically less elastic than that of a younger person and won’t automatically “snap back” to fit the body’s new contours.

Of course, each patient’s results may vary, and I encourage you to view our gallery of tummy tuck before-and-after pictures to see the results of previous patients who are of similar age and body types.

I also recommend reading about how women with different concerns and situations can benefit from tummy tuck surgery on the “Surgeon’s Perspective” page I mentioned above.

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Healthy Children > Ages & Stages > Gradeschool > Puberty > Cosmetic Surgery in Teens: Information for ParentsAGES & STAGESLISTENEspañolText Size-+

Cosmetic Surgery in Teens: Information for Parents

Pediatric plastic surgeons perform both reconstructive and cosmetic surgery.

  • Reconstructive surgery repairs a physical defect that affects a child’s ability to function normally (e.g., a cleft palate).
  • Cosmetic surgery aims to improve someone’s physical appearance and is mainly about improving their self-image or confidence.

Age of Consent  

The question of cosmetic (aka aesthetic) surgery in teens can be a thorny subject. There are no specific laws in the United States that prevent teenagers from getting cosmetic surgery; however, parental consent is required for patients under the age of 18. Therefore, the responsibility falls to parents to help their children make the right decision.

Common Cosmetic Surgeries Performed on Teens

Cosmetic surgery can be appropriate in selected teenagers and can be safely done. In 2013, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) published data showing that number of cosmetic surgery done for the teens has actually come down progressively over the years, in contrast to the media reports suggesting otherwise.

For example, in 2013 the ASPS reported that members performed 63,600 surgeries on patients between 13-19 years of age. The most common surgeries included:

  • Breast augmentation (breast implants) – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) considers aesthetic breast augmentation for patients less than 18 years of age to be an off-label use. The FDA has not approved breast augmentation in patients younger than 18. According to the ASPS, over 8,000 surgeries were performed in 2013 on 18-19 year old girls.
  • Rhinoplasty (nose reshaping) – This is the most requested aesthetic surgical procedure by teens. It can be performed when the nose has completed 90% of its growth, which can occur as early as age 13 or 14 in girls and 15 or 16 in boys.
  • Breast reduction – Frequently, this surgery is performed on girls with overly large breasts that may cause back and shoulder pain, as well as restrict physical activity. Breast reduction usually is delayed until the breasts have reached full development. In some boys, excessive breast development (gynecomastia) can become a significant problem. In those cases, the excess tissue can be removed.
  • Otoplasty (ear pinning) – This surgery is recommended for children as they near total ear development at age five or six.
  • Liposuction

Non-surgical cosmetic procedures

The ASPS reported nearly 156,000 non-surgical cosmetic procedures including botulinum (Botox®) injections, skin resurfacing, and laser treatments of hair, skin and veins.

If Your Teenager Wants Plastic Surgery

  • They must voice a specific concern and have realistic goals. Teens who are able to voice a specific concern and have realistic goals for their outcome are candidates for cosmetic procedures. For example, a teen who notes a hump on the nose and requests to have it removed, has a specific complaint. If that teen’s goal is to have a straight nose and blend in with peers, the outcome is likely to be achieved, so this teen may be a good candidate for cosmetic surgery. It the teenager believes that a straight nose will increase popularity, the goal is unrealistic and the teenager is not a good candidate for surgery.
  • They must show maturity and understand the procedure, risks, and consequences. A good candidate for cosmetic surgery is mature enough to understand the procedure, its risks, and what limitations the recovery period will require. The teenager requesting nasal reshaping who cannot rearrange their sports obligations to allow 6-8 weeks for surgery and healing is not yet ready to commit to the surgery and is not a good candidate for surgery. A mature teenager should also have an understanding of the possible things that can go wrong and be willing to accept that situation should it happen.
  • They must initiate the request for surgery. It is never advisable for a parent to suggest plastic surgery. The idea has to come from the child. Parents may project their own experiences and want to protect their children from emotional harm. If a teen has prominent ears, but is not bothered by them, that teen is not a good candidate even if the ears would respond well to an otoplasty. Parents who request consultation for a teen in this case may tell the doctor, My ears have always bothered me and I don’t want my child to have the same problem.” If the teen is not requesting the surgery, there is no patient consent, even if there is parental consent.
  • ​If your teen asks you about cosmetic procedures– particularly on the ears, nose or breasts – they may be candidates for cosmetic surgery. Explore what they feel they would like to change and why they would like it changed. Research what surgery might be like, what its risks are and how it would affect their activities. If as a parent-teenager team, you feel that cosmetic surgery may be appropriate, ask your pediatrician for a referral to a pediatric plastic surgeon who can explain more about it to you and your child.

Check Credentials

State laws permit any licensed physician to call themselves a “plastic” or “cosmetic” surgeon, even if not trained as a surgeon. Look for certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). If the doctor operates in an ambulatory or office-based facility, the facility should be accredited. Additionally, the surgeon should have operating privileges in an accredited hospital for the same procedure being considered.

Additional Information:

  • Helping Your Child Develop A Healthy Sense of Self Esteem
  • Children with Prominent Ears
  • Teen Magazines and Their Effect on Girls 
  • The American Society of Plastic Surgery – Helpful descriptions of surgeries and a deeper explanation about teenagers and cosmetic surgery.

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