Even though a nose job is commonly performed as an outpatient procedure, the nose is delicate and takes time to heal. Understanding what to expect from your rhinoplasty recovery can help you to heal faster. Let’s take a look at the recovery timeline after rhinoplasty and how long does a nose job take to heal.
Rhinoplasty Recovery: What To Expect
Most rhinoplasties are performed under a general anaesthetic so you will need to have someone available to drive you home. After your procedure, your nose will be bandaged and held in place by a splint. Make sure you have a place to rest at home. It’s a good idea to prop your head up on some pillows as this can stop the blood from pooling in your head and may help to reduce swelling. If you are given medication for pain and swelling, make sure you take it as directed.
Rhinoplasty Recovery Timeline: Healing Milestones After A Nose Job
Week 1 after your nose job
At the end of your first week, you can expect to visit your plastic surgeon. He or she will inspect your healing progress and remove the splint. Any stitches will be taken out. By the end of your first week, your swelling will have improved significantly but you may have some bruising under your eyes. During this week you should avoid direct sunlight and vigorous physical activity like heavy lifting.
Week 2 after your surgery
By the end of the second week, your swelling should have subsided. While you might still have some bruising, it should be easy to cover up with makeup. By the end of the second week, most patients would like to return to work or resume their day-to-day activities.
Weeks 3 and 4 after your nose job
By the fourth week following a rhinoplasty, you should be able to resume light fitness activities.
Week 6 into rhinoplasty recovery
After six weeks you will be able to get back into strength and resistance training. It usually takes six weeks for the nasal bones to heal and become stable. Your plastic surgeon will let you know how your healing is going and if it is safe to increase your activity level.
Three to six months into rhinoplasty recovery
By this stage, any unusual skin sensations or numbness around your nose should be gone and you should be enjoying your new nose shape and size.
12 months after your nose job
By the end of the first year, most patients will have recovered fully from rhinoplasty. Bruising, swelling, and redness should all have healed by this point. You should be able to appreciate the end result of your surgery.
So How Long Does A Nose Job Take To Heal?
The rhinoplasty recovery timeline is an incremental process that takes time. Most people find their swelling has healed enough at the end of the second or third week to go back to work. By the end of the sixth week, your nasal bones should have healed enough to be stable and you should be able to resume physical exercise. It is likely that you will have some swelling up to 12 months after your procedure, although this is generally only noticeable to you and your surgeon.
How Can You Speed Up Your Healing Process?
Following your surgeon’s recovery guidelines will help you to speed up recovery after a nose job. This means practising the right wound care, not exercising until you are ready and using the first two weeks for rest and recovery.
Please do not smoke after a nose job. Smoking interferes with your body’s rate of healing and can affect the way your skin heals.
Use cold compresses to alleviate swelling in the first few days. You might need some additional help with swelling, which can be managed by holding a cold compress gently to the side of your nose for a few seconds.
Keep your head elevated during recovery. When you are resting or sleeping, use a couple of pillows to prop your head upright.
Avoid direct sunlight during nose job recovery. Your skin will be more vulnerable to sunburn in your rhinoplasty recovery period. Direct sunlight can also make your skin darken and affect scarring.
Don’t wear glasses or sunglasses as the frame can put pressure on the bridge of your nose as it heals. This can cause more swelling or bruising, or even make an indentation in your nose. Your plastic surgeon will let you know when it is safe to start wearing glasses again.
Manage your temperature as well as you can. Hot baths, showers, and steam can cause stuffiness in your nose.
Avoid blowing your nose for at least six weeks after your nose job or until your plastic surgeon gives you the go-ahead. Your surgeon will give you a saline nose spray to use to clear your nostrils in the interim.
If you still have questions about how long does a nose job take to heal or what to expect during healing, it’s best to consult a professional. Please contact us for a confidential appointment: (02) 9158 6375.
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