The post-pandemic increase in plastic surgery highlights the importance of mental health factors - particularly for teenage candidates - in determining suitability for surgery, says Atlanta-based surgeon and best-selling author Dr. Harvey “Chip” Cole in a latest public education drive for Mental Health Awareness Month.
With 2021 seeing a 54% increase in plastic surgery and 44% in non-surgical procedures, and in recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month 2023, leading Atlanta-based surgeon Dr. Harvey "Chip" Cole III, MD, FACS, raises awareness of the importance of considering the role of select mental health aspects in determining a patient’s suitability for the procedures.
Dr. Cole highlights the increased prevalence of mental health risk factors in plastic surgery patients and urges practitioners to take these recent findings into account.
The surgeon cites a series of recent studies that indicate:
- an increased prevalence of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) in individuals requesting plastic surgery;
- higher rates of depression, anxiety, and personality disorders;
- potentially increased risk of psychosocial deficits for young women, with symptoms worsening over young adulthood.
Considering these findings, Dr. Cole recommends that all plastic surgeons take into account the complex psychological and developmental situation of each patient when assessing their suitability for plastic surgery.
This multi-disciplinary balanced approach is particularly important for teenage surgery candidates, who might be at a higher risk than other age groups.
“I tend not to advise [plastic surgery] for kids under 25. There is a reason why car insurance companies charge teenagers higher premiums than adults,” says Dr. Cole. “Teenagers are more likely to act before they think, to take risks and not think about their mortality the same way adults do. For the same reason, I believe that the buzzing, whirring teenage brain—which acts impulsively and doesn’t think about consequences—is probably not the best one to choose a plastic surgery they may end up regretting.”
However, the surgeon states that there are legitimate reasons for teenagers to go in for plastic surgery. “There is definitely such a thing as too young when it comes to plastic surgery, although there are exceptions. If a teenager has a medical condition that creates problems in their development, a corrective procedure might be necessary. For instance, a droopy eyelid blocking a child’s visual stimulation can have a huge, negative impact on his eyesight. A child with such a condition might even compensate for their diminished field of vision by tilting his head back a little bit in order to see, which over time can lead to arthritis and neck problems,” explains Dr. Cole.
While acknowledging the positive impact that plastic surgery can have on a person’s self-esteem and overall mental wellbeing, Dr. Cole emphasizes the importance of carefully considering a candidate’s complete psychological profile when assessing their suitability for any procedures.
About Dr. Harvey “Chip” Cole
A quadruple board-certified surgeon with more than three decades of experience, Dr. Cole is recognized as a global authority in facial surgery and is the award-winning author of “Face Change: Methods for Looking and Feeling Your Best.” He is the founder of the Face Change Foundation, a non-profit that redirects 10% of all his surgery revenue and 100% of all Face Change book sales to at-risk teenagers and victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse.
Dr. Cole is also the father of a bipolar child, now an adult, and has first-hand experience of what impacts mental health challenges in children can have on an entire family.
More details on Dr. Harvey "Chip" Cole can be found at https://oculusplasticsurgery.com/about-us/dr-chip-cole/
Name: Harvey "Chip" Cole, III, MD, FACS
Email: Send Email
Organization: Oculus Plastic Surgery
Address: 5505 Peachtree Dunwoody Road Ste 630, Atlanta, Georgia 30342, United States
Release ID: 89098212
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