Rhinoplasty is a cosmetic nose surgery that aims at changing the nose’s shape and appearance. Depending on your features, skin and your expectations, the rhinoplasty surgeon can plan your surgery by modifying your skin, cartilage, bone, or all of them. It is a very common plastic surgery that people often go for cosmetic purposes. However, sometimes it is also done for medicinal purposes, such as repairing the nose after injury, correcting breathing, or fixing a birth defect.
Possible reasons you may consider to go for rhinoplasty include the following:
- To change the size of your nose
- To change the angle of your nose
- To straighten your nose bridge
- To reshape your nose tip
- To narrow the nostrils
If your reasons are cosmetic, then you cannot go for this surgery unless you are at least 15 years old. Once the bone of your nose grows fully by this age, you can go for it. However, rhinoplasty may give you the solution if you have a breathing problem even at younger age.
Preparations Before the Surgery
During the first meeting, your surgeon will figure out whether you are eligible for rhinoplasty or not. They will know your reasons to go for it and what your expectations are. Depending on your medical condition, health history, and any medicines you are taking at present, your surgeon will decide to perform the surgery on you.
The surgeon will physically examine your nose, look at its skin both inside and out, and plan your surgery accordingly. They may also take photographs of your nose from different angles, that they will use to assess results from the surgery.
Don’t take any painkillers that contain aspirin or ibuprofen for at least 15 days before and after the surgery, as they may lead to bleeding from your nose. As smoking may slow down your recovery process, you may also be advised to quit smoking several days before and after your rhinoplasty.
During the Rhinoplasty Procedure
Rhinoplasty surgery can be done in a surgical facility, surgeon’s office, or in a hospital. You will be given local anaesthesia in your nose that will make your face numb. An IV line may also be given that can make you drowsy but you will still stay awake. Sometimes, general anaesthesia may be given to make you completely unconscious.
Once you are pain-free, the surgeon will give cuts inside or between your nostrils. They will separate bone or cartilage from your skin and reshape it. They may add or remove any cartilage as per the requirement from deep down your nose, or sometimes from your ear. Sometimes, bone grafting may be done, in which an extra bone is added to the existing bone of your nose. The entire process takes 1-2 hours, depending on the complexity.
Recovery After the Surgery
Once your Rhinoplasty is done, your surgeon will advise you to keep your head at elevation above the chest level. A little pain, puffiness, and headache are common after the surgery. For a few weeks, you will be advised against swimming, nose blowing, excessive chewing, laughing, wearing eyeglasses, and pulling clothes over the head. They will also ask you to avoid exposure to sun, as it may discolour your new nose skin. Follow-ups are very important after nose surgery. So, don’t skip your appointments even if you feel that everything’s fine and healed. You may be able to get back to your normal activities within a week.
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