Protruding ears do not grant any better acoustics than flat ears, but they certainly can bring a lot of teasing upon a child, as well as an adult. Shouts of “Dumbo” and “jug handles” can be hurtful and undermine a person’s self-esteem. If you or your child has protruding ears, ear surgery exists to correct the problem. The procedure is called an otoplasty and is sometimes referred to as “pinning” because it pins the ears back against the head.
Necessary Age for Ear Surgery
As a parent, it’s normal to want correction as soon as possible. This is especially true if your child’s ears are exceptionally prominent. However, surgery cannot be performed until the cartilage of the ears is mature. For most children, this means waiting until they are four or five years old at the earliest.
Adults can have the surgery done at any point, whenever they are ready. There is no upper age limit for otoplasty, as candidacy for surgery is determined by only the patient’s health and desire.
Waiting for a Child to Express Desire
Foisting cosmetic surgery upon an unwilling child can be psychologically damaging, so it’s best to wait until the child has shown some desire to have their ears “fixed” before scheduling the procedure. If your child is resistant to the thought of correcting their protruding ears, tell them to let you know if they ever change their mind.
The Surgical Procedure
Before the surgery, the patient is given anesthesia. The cartilage is then reshaped, and the ears are pinned back. Once the desired aesthetics are achieved, bandages are applied, and the patient is taken to the recovery room. An adult can take them home, usually within a few hours.
The Recovery Period
The head and ears have robust blood supply, making healing swift. This is especially true for children. Bandages are usually removed within a week after surgery, and any swelling and tenderness are mostly gone at four weeks. By six or eight weeks, all evidence of the surgery is gone. The ears are flat, and there is no more discomfort.
Learn More Today
If you or your child has ears that stick out, there’s no reason to suffer through all the teasing. Schedule an appointment at the Institute of Aesthetic Surgery, with locations in Altamonte Springs and Celebration. We will be happy to advise you of your options and discuss any concerns you may have. Contact us today to schedule a consultation for you or your child.