While it’s important to be realistic about rhinoplasty recovery, there are just a few rules to follow when it comes to healing in style! Here’s how to make sure your recovery is smooth and uneventful, and remember, you’ll be back to your normal routine in 4-6 weeks:
1. Sleep Slightly Elevated
To help reduce swelling, Dr. Brian May recommends sleeping on your back and keeping your head slightly elevated while sleeping for the first week after surgery. This can be done propped up on two or three pillows to create a comfortable wedge, or by sleeping in a recliner. If you keep your head higher than your heart, you minimize the potential for fluid buildup in the area, which creates swelling.
2. No Smoking or drinking
Press pause on any drinking of alcohol for two weeks following surgery. Alcohol thins the blood, can interact with pain medications, and increases chances of bleeding or bruising. After these two weeks, feel free to toast to your new nose!
As for smoking, the board-certified surgeons at Capizzi MD recommend quitting smoking prior to any surgery and abstaining from nicotine for at least six weeks following your procedure. Nicotine interferes with the body’s natural healing processes by reducing blood flow to the skin, which can increase the chance of complications. It also has an effect on collagen and elastin production within the skin and can interfere with surgical results.
3. No Eyewear of Any Kind!
Rhinoplasty patients should avoid sunglasses, reading glasses, and all other forms of eyewear for a few weeks after surgery. This allows the nasal bones to heal in their new positions without shifting or creating indentations or bumps in the bridge. Guess it’s time to learn how to put in contacts.
4. Don’t Pick Your Nose
This can be incredibly tempting when healing from a rhinoplasty as you will have sutures and possible scabbing as time progresses. It is so important to refrain from touching the inside of your nose so that you do not interfere with your results or reopen any wounds! Instead, use a nasal saline solution in your nose to help keep your nose clear and to relieve some of the drying effects that surgery can have on your nasal lining.
5. Be Careful Kissing
Did you know that toddlers’ heads are a huge cause of breaks after rhinoplasty? One accidental bump, and the newly forming area of bone can break and need revision surgery. So be EXTREMELY careful kissing any babies (or pets) for the first month after surgery.
6. Avoid Cardio or Excessive Strain
This goes for all surgeries, but it is important to remember that intense cardio increases blood flow. Which can cause bleeding, increased swelling, and bruising in areas that have been recently operated on. You will be cleared for extended walking or light workouts 2-3 weeks following surgery so just take this as a sign to rest. Do you really love cardio and Crossfit? Don’t worry, you’ll be back to your normal routine by the 6-week mark.
Interested in learning more about rhinoplasty recovery? We got you! Feel free to fill out our contact form and someone will be in touch to answer all your questions including pricing, recovery guidelines, timelines, and more.