What would you say is your most prominent facial feature? Many might say the eyes. Our eyes are certainly the most romanticized and are often remarked upon for being beautiful. But, romance and the windows to the soul aside, the most physically prominent facial feature you have is most likely your nose. Unfortunately, there aren’t a great many love poems dedicated to our noses, so the eyes win again there. But, due to the size and positioning, your nose is quite prominent. Centrally located in the face, it’s hard to ignore a nose. Depending on how you feel about your nose, that can be a bad thing or something you actually never think about.
But, if you’ve been wondering if rhinoplasty, or a nose job if you prefer, is for you, then it’s important to have all the information necessary for the procedure. Doing it for the right reasons is, of course, something to keep in mind, as well as the different kinds of nasal surgeries and what you should expect. Here’s a quick guide to what you should know about rhinoplasty and other kinds of nasal surgeries.
Why are you interested in rhinoplasty?
As with any cosmetic procedure, you have to know why you want to do it. Do you think it’ll change your life, make you whole, or make people like you more? You may want to think about things for a bit longer. But if you’re a bit more grounded in your desires and you recognize that you would feel a bit more comfortable or happier with your appearance if you changed something about your nose, then you’re probably a good candidate. A nose job can certainly make you feel better about yourself, but it’s important to keep things in perspective about how much one’s life can change from it.
There are many aspects of your nose that you may find troublesome that you’d like to correct. Perhaps you have a bump along the bridge, the tip is too wide, or your nose appears flat. Whatever your individual issue is with your nose, talk about it with your surgeon. Because rhinoplasty is an exact art, it’s important that there is a definite understanding of what you want and what the surgeon can do.
Nose surgery isn’t always for cosmetic reasons either. If you’ve suffered an accident, your nose may have been damaged. In fact, the nose is the most frequently injured part of the face because of its prominence. You may be interested in reconstruction. Alternatively, certain conditions that can be present from birth or caused by injury, like a deviated septum, are also good reasons to elect to have surgery done in order to improve your breathing.
The different kinds of nasal surgeries
A primary rhinoplasty is what one thinks of when they hear “nose job.” It’s a cosmetic procedure performed to give you the look that you want so you can improve your confidence.
Functional nasal surgery is health related. While a primary rhinoplasty is concerned with aesthetics, this type of surgery is designed to address any structural issues that may be making it difficult to breathe.
Finally, there is revision rhinoplasty. Sometimes, a person may opt for corrections to a surgical procedure they had years prior. Because nasal surgery is so complex, some feel that the first attempt doesn’t align with their vision.
What to expect
Surgery can take anywhere from one to four hours depending on the exact procedure and end goals. Usually, there is no scarring if an intranasal approach is taken. In some instances, an open approach will be necessary, but scarring will be minimal. Often, it’s a small scar just above the base of the nostrils that is difficult to see.
Plan on wearing a supportive splint for seven days following surgery in order to protect the nose. Swelling and bruising lasts anywhere from a week to two weeks. This varies by person, but discomfort should be minimal during this healing process. You can return to work and strenuous activities after about a week. Do not wear glasses for at least six to eight weeks. A month out, you’ll see positive results. By six months most of the healing should be done. Residual swelling can last upwards of eighteen months at the outside.
Nose surgery is one of the most complicated and delicate procedures that someone could opt for. Whether you’re doing it for cosmetic reasons or for quality of life to improve your breathing, you need to pick a surgeon that you can feel confident about. Dr. Michael R. Macdonald is board certified in otolaryngology and has years of experience performing this surgery, including corrective surgery of previous attempts by other surgeons. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment. You’ll be able to sit with Dr. Macdonald and share your goals. Together, you’ll be able to come up with a plan so you can look and feel your best.