If you are about to undergo rhinoplasty surgery, also known as a nose job, then it's important that you know what to expect during the recovery period. A lot of patients have false beliefs or irrational fears related to recovering from this procedure, and at the same time, they are surprised by issues they did not realize they would have to deal with. To ensure your recovery does as smoothly as possible, keep these facts in mind.
You might develop black eyes.
It's not just your nose that will be swollen and bruised after surgery. The blood may settle into the soft tissue beneath your eyes, giving you the appearance of having black eyes. This side effect is nothing to worry about, but to help it go away more quickly, you can hold cool (not too cold, or you may damage your eyes) compresses over your eyes for a few minutes, several times per day.
You may not need to take pain relievers.
Your doctor may write you a prescription for pain relievers, but don't assume you will absolutely need to take them. For many patients, the pain following rhinoplasty is rather minor. It's the itching and inability to breathe from your nose that's likely to bother you the most. Take pain relievers if the pain is becoming too intense, but don't be afraid to skip them if you're not feeling uncomfortable. The side effects they cause, which may include stomach irritation and trouble sleeping, might just make matters worse.
You will deal with dry mouth.
In the first few days following surgery, before the bandages are removed, you will not be able to breathe through your nose. Thus, your mouth will be open often, and it will dry out. Try chewing gum and sipping water regularly to keep your nose moist. You're likely to snore when you sleep and breathe through your mouth, so consider sleeping separately from your partner if he or she is easily awakened.
Your nose will stay sensitive for a while.
When your doctor told you it typically takes 2 weeks to a month to recover from rhinoplasty, you were probably surprised by how short that recovery period is. Don't let yourself get too excited yet, however. Though most of the swelling should be gone within a few weeks, your nose will stay sore and sensitive for a bit longer. You'll have to be careful when applying makeup and washing your face for a couple of months.
Recovering from a nose job is not terribly painful or uncomfortable, but it can involve some surprising elements. Now that you have a better idea of what to expect, you can approach your surgery with confidence. Speak with an expert in facial plastic surgery for further information.