Recovery from rhinoplasty is a snap with the right knowledge

Recovery from rhinoplasty (nose job) can be very quick if you apply the right knowledge before and after the operation.

Rhinoplasty is done under general anesthetic and is considered to be major surgery. There are the effects of the anesthetic itself, plus bruising, swelling, and soreness to contend with.

An effective care regime will minimize bruising and prevent infection plus ensure that your recovery from rhinoplasty is as quick as possible.

Preparation for rhinoplasty

Stop smoking two weeks before and stop excessive alcohol, no fish oil tablets, garlic tablets, vitamin E, and no aspirin-based products.

One week before:

Take vitamin B and vitamin C daily. Put 2 Arnica tablets under the tongue every 4 hours and let them dissolve. Arnica is absolutely great for reducing bruising.

Fish oil promotes bruising, so discontinue taking it, about a month before your op.

Care regime post-op

  1. To clean the nose. You can’t blow your nose with any sort of pressure because you have stitches inside. It’s very swollen and blocked up. So the way you do it is to use drops 4 times a day to help clear it out.
  2. To prevent infection. Use synthetic antibiotic ointment across suture lines after you’ve sprayed your nose. Take the prescribed course of antibiotics and continue taking Berocca daily.
  3. To minimize bruising. Use cloths dipped in water with ice blocks, squeeze them lightly, and then drop them gently over your face. The cold reduces bruising. Also, use a cream on bruising.

Recovery from rhinoplasty: days 2-4

Apply ice cloths to the swollen area to reduce swelling (first 3-4 days) and avoid heat throughout (first month) to allow swelling to reduce.

Life is a bit miserable because you can’t touch your face, can’t lie on your side (because you need to sleep on your back, at a 45-degree angle, with pillows propped up while your body does the job of healing your nose in the right shape). Sleeping at night is the worst because you’ve slept a lot during the day and can’t sleep for a whole night, plus your back gets sore from having to lie on it all the time.

Recovery from rhinoplasty: days 5-7

Day 7 should be the first post-op appointment with the surgeon and the sutures were removed. The majority of sutures are still inside the nose, where they will stay for 6-8 weeks until they dissolve away. For the removal of sutures, they put some anesthetic cream on the affected areas and let it soak in for 20 minutes before your surgeon takes them out.

Once the bandage is off and the sutures are out, you can go to the shops and go for walks without scaring people – so that’s a big milestone.

Extra tips

You can’t sit anything on the bridge of your nose for about a month because you do not want to disturb your body’s growth into the right nose shape. So get used to wearing a hat if it’s sunny weather because you don’t want to be squinting and making all those crow’s feet happen!

Walking is great for a faster recovery – getting the blood moving around your body, so as soon as you feel well enough it’s good to take short walks around your neighborhood (with your hat on).

Your recovery from rhinoplasty starts the week before your surgery. It’s really worthwhile to be diligent about taking all your medications and applying all ointments because, if you do, 80% of your healing will happen in the first 7 days after the op. Facial swelling, the dissolving of internal sutures, and sensitivity of the nose itself take longer to get back to normal.

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