How Can I Reduce My Rhinoplasty Recovery Time?
Many patients wonder how long the recovery phase following rhinoplasty surgery will last. They are eager to enjoy the results of their procedure and are understandably concerned about how long the side effects will last. Be patient. Though there are ways to reduce your healing time, the recovery process is a necessary step in the rhinoplasty procedure.
Recovery following rhinoplasty is different for each patient. Due to overall health and other factors, some patients do heal faster than others. It is important to be realistic. Recovery is a process that takestime. The full results of rhinoplasty surgery are usually visible in about eight to ten weeks. However, some subtle shifting may continue for up to a year before your nose settles into its final shape.
A full understanding of the side effects you may experience is helpful, because many people find that the recovery time seems shorter when they know what to expect. Most patients experience some degree of swelling and bleeding. Bruising is also common and may extend into the eye area, giving you a “black eye.” Though many patients are surprised at how they look immediately following surgery, these side effects usually dissipate within about a week to ten days. If you have any questions about the side effects you are experiencing, just ask us.
After a nose job, there are several steps you can take that may reduce recovery time. Among the most important of these is remembering to take it slowly. During the healing process, avoid strenuous exercise – especially activities that could result in a blow to the nose – and keep your head elevated. Sleep with at least two pillows under your head. Not only will elevation help alleviate bruising and swelling, it will also keep you from bumping your nose by rolling over in your sleep. Avoid disturbing your nose while it is healing. Disturbance can affect its alignment and disrupt the recovery process. Remember that your nose will be a little weaker than normal until it has healed fully.
Get plenty of rest and avoid returning to your normal daily routines too quickly. Many patients are eager to get back to work and other activities, but returning too early can actually prolong the healing process. Plan to take at least a week away from work and other obligations. Follow Dr Marcells’ aftercare instructions, which are designed to help you heal faster. Any discomfort or tenderness you feel can usually be managed with pain medication, making you more comfortable during the recovery period.
Following rhinoplasty surgery, there may be splints inside your nose to hold it in its new position. You will also have sutures inside your nose. Do not prematurely remove these sutures, even though they may be uncomfortable. These will be removed during a follow-up appointment, after your nose is more stable.
Many patients report that swelling is the side effect that lasts longest, obscuring the results of their procedure. There are several ways to reduce swelling during rhinoplasty recovery. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, and eat a low-sodium diet. Get plenty of rest. Cold compresses (a bag of frozen peas works well) will help reduce swelling on your face.
While it can feel like the rhinoplasty recovery period is preventing you from enjoying the new shape of your nose, the process is crucial. By allowing your nose to heal properly, you can experience optimum results from the surgery.
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Meet Dr Marcells
MBBS (Syd), FRACS (ORL-HNS)
Past President – Australasian Academy of Facial Plastic Surgeons
Dr George Marcells is known for excellence in facial plastic surgery and is considered a true master of rhinoplasty. He performs advanced surgical techniques to restore balance and harmony to the face and can also resolve functional issues such as breathing difficulties.