How long is the recovery from rhinoplasty surgery?
For the first 24 hours after surgery your face will feel puffy, your nose may ache and you may have a dull headache, however, prescribed pain medication can control this. Plan on taking it easy with your head elevated for the first few days. You’ll notice that the swelling and bruising around your eyes will increase initially, reaching a peak after two to three days. Cold compresses will reduce this swelling and make you feel a bit better.
In any case, you’ll feel a lot better than you look. Most of the swelling and bruising should disappear within two weeks or so, although some subtle swelling – unnoticeable to anyone but you and your surgeon – will remain for several months. A little bleeding is common in the early days after surgery, and you may continue to feel some stuffiness for several weeks.
You will probably be asked not to blow your nose for a week or so to allow the tissues to heal. If nasal packing has been used it will be removed after a few days and you’ll feel much more comfortable. By the end of one week, all dressings, splints, and stitches should be removed.
Most rhinoplasty clients are up and about within two days of surgery, and able to return to sedentary work after just a week. It will be several weeks, however, before you’re entirely up to speed. Our staff will give you more specific guidelines for gradually resuming your normal activities.
For four to six weeks you’ll be asked to avoid strenuous activity – jogging, swimming, bending, sexual relations or any activity that increases your blood pressure. Avoid hitting or rubbing your nose, or getting it sunburned, for eight weeks. Be gentle when washing your face and hair or using cosmetics.
You can wear contact lenses as soon as you feel like it but, until your nose is completely healed, you must be careful with glasses. Once the splint is off, they’ll have to be taped to your forehead or propped on your cheeks for another few weeks.
Our office staff will schedule frequent follow-up visits in the months after surgery to check on your progress. If you have any unusual symptoms between visits, or any questions about what you can and can’t do, don’t hesitate to call.