Give you child more confidence in their appearance
Disproportionately large or protruding ears are a common source of schoolyard taunts and bullying. If your child’s ears are particularly prominent, you may be hesitant to send them to school knowing your child might be vulnerable to this type of behavior. Ear reshaping surgery is an option to correct the ear shape and placement so your child can attend school with the confidence necessary for success.
Technically known as otoplasty, and sometimes referred to as “ear pinning” surgery, this procedure enhances the appearance of the ears. Otoplasty can be performed on patients as young as four or five and offers a very high success rate. The procedure is also available for older children or adults who are unhappy with the shape or position of their ears. Dr Gerarchi performs this procedure regularly, providing excellent results which will follow your child and boost their self-confidence throughout their lifetime.
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” Lao Tzu
The results your child deserves
There are many concerns which might prompt you to seek out otoplasty for your child:
- Ears which protrude from the sides of the head
- Disproportionately large ears compared to other facial features
- Ears which fold over on the top (known as lop ears)
- Ears that are not symmetrical in terms of size, shape or position
Protruding ears are one of the top reasons your child may be teased or bullied; studies have shown bullying can impact a child’s social development as well as their academic performance. By treating this problem early, you may be able to prevent bullying during the school years, which can provide a myriad of benefits to your child’s self-confidence.
Meeting your child’s surgeon
The initial appointment with Dr Gerarchi should be attended by you, your partner and your child. As it provides critical information and an assessment, this appointment is very valuable. Your child’s full health history and current health status will be taken into consideration during this appointment, and all of you will be able to ask questions about the surgery. Dr Gerarchi is passionate about ensuring everyone involved is comfortable with the decision, and understands what to expect of the procedure.
Considering the surgery
There are a few considerations when contemplating paediatric otoplasty, including the maturity of your child and his or her ability to remain somewhat inactive during the recovery process. Your child should understand the procedure on a very basic level, as well as the benefits the surgery will offer. You and Dr Gerarchi can work together to determine if the timing is right for your child to undergo otoplasty.
Your child’s ear-correction journey
General anaethesia is typical for paediatric otoplasty. Incisions are made in the back of the ear to remove excess cartilage before the ears are sutured into a more aesthetically pleasing position. Corrections can also be made to the shape of the ear if necessary; care is taken to ensure visible scarring after the procedure will be minimal. In most cases, otoplasty will take around 45-60 minutes per ear.
Your child’s recovery
The ears will be dressed and wrapped in a head bandage to maintain their position; this procedure typically only causes minimal discomfort.
Bandages will be removed the following day, replaced by a sports headband to be worn full-time for one week, then at night only for six weeks.
Swelling behind the ear is common and should cause no concern. The resulting scar from otoplasty will be a well-hidden thin, white line at the back of the ear.
Your child’s post-surgical journey
Most patients report their recovery from otoplasty is quick, and relatively pain-free. While the ears might appear a little red, your child should be able to return to school about five days after their otoplasty surgery. Contact sports and activity which may injure the ears should be avoided for two months. Your child will also need to avoid sleeping on his or her side during the first week or two to avoid placing unnecessary pressure on their ears during the healing process. There is a possibility minor adjustments will be necessary after the initial surgery, but the results of otoplasty will last a lifetime. Along with cosmetic improvements, this surgery offers a substantial boost to your child’s self-confidence, which can make a significant difference during the school years and beyond.