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Rhinoplasty - What to Expect After Surgery

Dr. Roberto Garcia | 09/21/2021

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Rhinoplasty - What to Expect After Surgery

What is rhinoplasty?

A rhinoplasty is a cosmetic procedure that's used to improve the shape and contour of the nose. Patients who want a more balanced face and side profile often opt for a rhinoplasty to enhance their facial beauty. Patients also undergo rhinoplasty to fix a deviated septum, which can impact breathing.

One of the most common questions that patients ask when considering rhinoplasty is “what is recovery like?” Just as you should have realistic expectations about the results of the procedure, it's just as important to know what to expect post-op.

Knowing what you'll experience after the procedure is the best way to facilitate a smooth recovery. Here's what you need to know about the post-op rhinoplasty experience.

What to expect after surgery

After undergoing a rhinoplasty, you're likely to be excited to see your new nose and to get back to your daily routine. However, you don't want to rush recovery as it could impact your final results.

Every patient has a unique nose and therefore a unique rhinoplasty procedure and recovery. There are many factors that influence the amount of time you need to heal and when you see your final results including:

  • Age
  • Overall health
  • Skin thickness
  • Predisposal to swelling/bruising
  • Surgical technique (open vs. closed)

Your recovery is entirely unique. Be sure to follow all postoperative instructions to protect your new nose while promoting healing.

Recovery timeline

Wondering what you can expect days and weeks after surgery? This general timeline gives you an idea of each stage of the healing process.

Immediately after surgery

After waking up from the procedure, you'll need a family member or friend to drive you home. Be sure that you have someone at home for the first 24-48 hours who can help you in case you need assistance.

You'll be discharged with a splint, which can be located inside, outside, or in both locations. The splint protects and supports your new nasal structure. You will be given pain medication to manage discomfort. Stay ahead of the pain by taking medication on a set schedule.

Week one

The first few days post-op are the most uncomfortable. Take this time to rest and to relax as much as possible. Keep your head propped up and sleep on your back. Avoid bending over, blowing your nose, or any activity that could impact your new nose.

While you'll experience some discomfort, most patients rarely experience a lot of pain. Use a cold compress to help with swelling and discomfort.

Be sure to follow all instructions to clean and care for your incisions. Most patients have their split removed within 5-7 days after the procedure.

Week two

During the second week, you can expect swelling, bruising, and some discomfort. You may be cleared for light activity, including returning to work. Strenuous activity should be avoided.

You must continue to sleep on your back and avoid wearing anything that touches your nose, such as sunglasses. Be aware that your nose is still healing and what you see in the mirror isn't your final result.

Week three and beyond

Healing from any cosmetic procedure, including rhinoplasty, is a gradual process. After week three and beyond, you should notice a decrease in swelling. You will see subtle changes to your nose and should expect changes for the next few months.

Though it can be hard, be patient! It can take up to a year to see final results.

Recovery tips

Your body is ultimately in charge of how quickly you heal. However, there are some things you can do to ensure your recovery is as quick and comfortable as possible.

  • Use an ice pack to reduce swelling, pressure, and bruising
  • Rest as much as possible
  • Keep your head elevated
  • Take walks outside to increase oxygen flow throughout the body
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Eat a nutritious diet
  • Lower salt intake as sodium can increase swelling

These simple yet effective steps can help promote healing so that you can get back to normal life while enjoying your new nose.

Schedule a consultation today!

Another key factor that impacts your ability is the cosmetic surgeon that you choose. You want a doctor that understands the intricacy of working with the nose so that you're completely happy with your new look.

Dr. Roberto Garcia in Jacksonville, Florida has decades of experience performing facial cosmetic procedures. He knows the ins and outs of creating a perfect nose that looks entirely natural.

Want to learn more? Schedule an in-person or virtual consultation today! Contact our team at (904) 686-8020 or fill out our online form. We look forward to helping you achieve a nose that enhances your natural beauty.


Contoura Facial Plastic Surgery in Jacksonville

Under the direction of visionary double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. Roberto Garcia, Contoura Facial Plastic Surgery offers the latest surgical and non-surgical procedures in a relaxed and serene setting. Schedule a virtual or in-person consultation today to get the first glimpse of your future self.

230 A1A N, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082