How do nose jobs work?
Many rhinoplasties are performed under general anesthesia. If your particular case is less complex, Dr. Nesmith may choose local anesthesia to numb your nasal area and oral sedation to relax you during the procedure.
Depending on your desired results, the procedure may start with breaking your nose to remove bone and cartilage. A reduction rhinoplasty refers to a procedure that removes tissue from your nose to reshape it.
An augmentation rhinoplasty adds tissue to your nose. For example, rebuilding the tip of your nose may require a cartilage graft from your septum or even your ear.
After your nose has been shaped according to your surgical plan, Dr. Nesmith pulls the skin back down and closes the incision. You'll be fitted with a cast or splint to wear over your nose for at least one week.
The difference between rhinoplasty and septoplasty
Rhinoplasty is a surgical procedure for reconstructive and/or cosmetic purposes. It is nose reshaping typically for aesthetic reasons, or to correct malformed noses from birth defects. This surgery can improve breathing function, but that is usually not the primary intent.
Septoplasty is the nasal surgery intended for straightening nasal septums and improving breathing. A deviated septum is a condition where the wall between your nasal passages is crooked. Patients with a deviated septum should seek a septoplasty procedure instead.
Recovery after rhinoplasty
The first day is usually the most difficult for recovering rhinoplasty patients as they will experience swelling and discomfort. We recommend patients stay in bed with their head elevated for the first 24 hours.
You should expect swelling, bruising, and a stuffy-nose feeling. Your nose will feel less congested after removing the cast or splint. Experiencing slight bleeding is normal as nose tissue heals. Some patients may experience minute red spots on their noses; however, those spots fade with time.
Your swelling and bruising will remain for two to four days but will typically subside within two weeks. You can help reduce swelling by sleeping with your head elevated and applying cold compresses in the first few days. We also suggest avoiding spicy foods in the first few days because they can make swelling worse.
Many patients can return to work or school after the first week of recovery. However, physical activities may still be limited.
How long does a nose job take to heal?
Many patients are concerned with how long their swelling after surgery may last. Your nose will likely swell during recovery after removing the nasal splint. The amount of swelling depends on many factors like the type of rhinoplasty, the thickness of your skin, and the extent of the procedure.
Generally, after two weeks you will be ready to return to work and be seen out and about. Swelling has reduced enough at this point that no one will notice anything off. Your nose will continue to heal over time, with final results being visible after about a year.
After around three months, much more swelling has resolved and you will have a better idea of the new shape and size of your nose. After six months, approximately 90% of the swelling will be gone.
If you have significant work done in your nose job, it may take a year or more to see the swelling in the tip of your nose resolve.
Am I a good candidate for rhinoplasty?
You should consider a number of factors when determining if a nose job is right for you – your budget, your recovery time, and the cosmetic or structural issues you'd like to change.
Your facial features need time to mature before you undergo a nose surgery, so patients should be at least 17 years old. Additionally, ideal candidates have no lingering health concerns, are nonsmokers, and have realistic goals regarding their physical appearance.
The most effective way to determine candidacy for rhinoplasty is by consulting your plastic surgeon and discussing expectations and goals regarding the surgery.
How do I prepare for nose surgery?
Before a patient undergoes surgery, they will meet with their surgeon to discuss expectations, medical history, and if rhinoplasty is right for them. After being subject to a physical exam and approved for the procedure, patients should arrange a friend or family member to drive them to and from the appointment, as they will have been under general anesthesia.
After being administered anesthesia, patients may experience memory loss, time-lapses, difficulty performing motor functions, and impaired judgment for the following few days, so it’s encouraged to arrange for a friend or family member to watch over them during that time.
What is a revision rhinoplasty?
If you have had a nose job in the past and are unhappy with the results, you may be a candidate for a revision rhinoplasty. A consultation is required with Dr. Nesmith to determine if you are eligible for a revision procedure. You should allow at least a year following your original surgery before consulting a plastic surgeon about a revision.
Is rhinoplasty different for Black, Asian, and Latino patients?
Black, Asian, and Latino patients will have genetically distinct features in their nose and face. The skilled plastic surgeons at Nesmith Plastic Surgery Center can reshape and resize your nose while maintaining your distinct features and keeping it proportional to the rest of your face.