Rhinoplasty – the healing process

As the central feature of the face, even small changes to the nose can have a significant impact on your appearance. It’s essential to be fully prepared for the recovery process as it can take several months before you see the full effect of the operation, and up to a year for the swelling to completely go.

Downtime from a nose job varies, but Mr Supriya will likely recommend that you take a week or two off from work to get through the initial healing period. After the first couple of weeks, recovery becomes much easier.

Protecting your nose following surgery is as important as your recovery process. Thus, there are things you can do to protect your nose following a rhinoplasty nose job.

Immediately after surgery

Waking up after rhinoplasty surgery can be disorientating as you may not be able to breathe through your nose. Besides being covered with an external splint, you may have an internal splint or packing in the nostrils as well. Some patients experience swelling and bruising depending on what type of rhinoplasty you have undergone, but expected at this stage. Even with the packing removed, breathing can prove difficult for the next few days until the swelling and bruising lessens.

You should arrange for someone to drive you home and for someone to stay with you for the first 24 hours. Taking painkillers before the anaesthesia completely wears off is encouraged although most patients report that there is very little pain following a rhinoplasty.

The next 7 to 10 days

The splint to support your nose will remain for about 10 days. The absorbable stitches in the nose will also disappear after the same amount of time. You will continue to feel congested, but rarely feel much discomfort.

Swelling and bruising will begin to fade, and to the casual observer your nose job won’t be all that noticeable. You’ll probably be ready to return to work at this point, but you will have to avoid strenuous activity and heavy lifting.

After a nose job it’s normal for your skin to be extra sensitive, so you’ll have to limit your sun exposure. Get plenty of rest and maintain a healthy diet: your body requires lots of energy while healing so it’s important to get seven to eight hours of sleep a night and replenish the body with the nutrients it needs to heal itself.

Clothing – Try to avoid wearing pullover clothes. Buttoned or zipped clothing, or pullovers with a very wide collar, is best at this stage.

Glasses – Do not rest glasses or sunglasses on the nose to prevent pressure.

Sneezing – You will really need to avoid sneezing and should not blow your nose for at least a week.

Painkillers – It is not advisable to take products that contain ibuprofen or aspirin for a week after your procedure.

The first month

You will start to look and feel recovered at this point. You may still have some swelling, most notably around the tip of the nose, but you will now be able to see the initial surgical results clearly.

You should be cleared for light cardio activities, and you’ll probably be able to wear glasses or sunglasses now. You should continue to avoid blowing your nose for at least six weeks.

Full recovery

Day by day you’ll notice your nose becoming more refined as the swelling continues to decrease. After 6 months to a year your nose will have healed on the inside and outside, and you’ll see your full results.

Any numbness or changes in sensation in the nose and nasal skin should be fully resolved three to six months after surgery.

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Thinking of Rhinoplasty?

Rhinoplasty offers you the chance to improve the shape and size of your nose, bringing it into balance with the rest of your facial features to enhance your overall appearance. To begin your own journey, it starts with a video consultation. Click here to book it online, or give us a call on 07590 817036.

Read more about rhinoplasty

I’m an expert in this area and have all of the answers to any questions you might have. However, If you’d like to continue learning about rhinoplasty, open up the toggles below to read more.

For an official overview of the treatment and to find out why patients have rhinoplasty, click here.

The NHS has provided useful information on rhinoplasty, including the cost and where to go to have the procedure. Click here for more information.

For an overview of the rhinoplasty procedure, and to find out what rhinoplasty could do for you, please read this useful article here. 

Mr Mrinal Supriya | Facial Cosmetic Surgeon


About the expert

Mr Mrinal Supriya is a Consultant ENT Head and Neck Surgeon with a special interest in facial cosmetic surgery. He is among 30 cosmetic surgeons who are members of the Royal College of Surgeons’ voluntary registration scheme – a professional body that works to advance surgical practice and patient care.

Mr Surpriya has previously worked in top hospitals around the world including the UK, Australia and the USA. He has also spent time with Dr Andrew Jacono who has been named one of the top plastic surgeons in the USA.
In the UK, Mr Supriya has worked as an ENT Consultant at Northampton General Hospital & St. George’s University Hospital, London as well as Ninewells University Hospital, Dundee.

Mr. Supriya’s clinical interests are minimal-access facial cosmetic procedures with a further expertise in Deep Plane Facelift and Rhinoplasty. By focusing his cosmetic practice solely to the face, Mr Supriya has developed super-specialised skills and achieved extremely reliable results with high patient satisfaction.

Mr. Supriya is able to provide comprehensive expertise that can only come from super specialisation: eyelid rejuvenation, nose job, endoscopic brow, face and neck lift, lip rejuvenation, cheek rejuvenation, ear surgery, chin surgery, buccal fat pad resection and skin treatments.

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