29 Questions About Rhinoplasty: Part 2
16. What can I eat after rhinoplasty?
For the first 24 hours after surgery, you should consume cool, bland food like soda crackers and ginger ale to minimize the side effects of anesthesia. Over the next few days, soft foods such as mashed potatoes, smoothies, oatmeal, soup, and Gatorade are recommended. Hot meals and drinks, as well as spicy foods, should be avoided as they can dilate the blood vessels, thereby increasing swelling and bruising. For the first week, Dr. Boyd also recommends avoiding foods that are difficult to chew. By the second week after surgery, you can resume your normal diet.
17. Will I retain my sense of smell after rhinoplasty?
Due to postoperative swelling of the internal nasal tissues, your sense of smell will be temporarily diminished during your recovery from rhinoplasty. After a few weeks, as the swelling subsides, your sense of smell will return to normal.
18. Will I retain my sense of taste after rhinoplasty?
As the senses of smell and taste are profoundly interconnected, your ability to taste may also be temporarily altered during your recovery from rhinoplasty. As the swelling subsides, your sense of taste will return to normal.
19. Which day after rhinoplasty is the worst?
For most patients, rhinoplasty does not have a particularly painful recovery. Swelling and discomfort tend to peak by day two or three, particularly if you have packing in place, but recovery is usually uphill from there. Packing, if present, is usually removed by the second or third day.
20. How old do you have to be to undergo rhinoplasty?
You should be at least in your mid to late teens before undergoing nose surgery. Physical maturity of the nasal tissues and emotional maturity of the individual are both essential for this procedure.
21. How should I sleep after rhinoplasty?
After rhinoplasty, you should sleep on your back with your head elevated on two pillows for at least one week to minimize swelling. Dr. Boyd may require some patients to continue sleeping on their backs for a while longer to avoid damaging the nasal tissues. You will be given personalized instructions according to your particular situation.
22. When can I sleep on my side after rhinoplasty?
This truly varies from patient to patient. All patients should sleep on their backs with the head elevated for at least a week to minimize swelling. Some may need to continue sleeping on their back for a few weeks after that. Dr. Boyd will give you a personal recommendation.
23. How long do rhinoplasty results last?
The results from rhinoplasty should last a lifetime.
24. How do I choose my new nose?
Deciding how your nose should look is the most difficult part of rhinoplasty. First, you should consider what it is that you do not like about your nose. Is it too large? Is it crooked, or does it have a hump? Are your nostrils too large? Do you wish that your nasal tip was more refined? You will have a detailed discussion about this with Dr. Boyd, who will make recommendations based on your anatomy and facial structure as well as your desires. While you may wish to have a certain celebrity’s nose, bear in mind that a nose that flatters one face may not flatter another. Decisions about what your nose should look like after rhinoplasty are unique and personal. Dr. Boyd will discuss nasal aesthetics with you, and after a complete nasal examination, he will develop the surgical plan that will best serve your goals. Dr. Boyd encourages you to schedule consultations with multiple surgeons to educate yourself and see what they recommend. However, make sure that the surgeon understands what you want and explains how he/she intends to achieve the result. It is vital that you understand exactly what is being proposed and that it makes sense to you.
25. How do I know if I need rhinoplasty revision?
A second rhinoplasty operation on the same patient is often called a “rhinoplasty revision” or a “secondary rhinoplasty.” Operating on a nose that has already had surgery is a much more complex procedure than an initial rhinoplasty. You might need rhinoplasty revision if your previous results did not turn out well. You should wait at least one year after your initial rhinoplasty before pursuing rhinoplasty revision so that your nose has had time to heal. Remember that your nose will continue to change for about 12 months after rhinoplasty; therefore, what initially may have seemed like disappointing results could very well turn out to be exactly what you desired. (Conversely, an initially excellent result may deteriorate!) Another reason to undergo rhinoplasty revision is if you injure your nose after rhinoplasty. In the case of nasal injury, talk to Dr. Boyd about if and when a secondary rhinoplasty is indicated.
26. How will rhinoplasty change my face?
Rhinoplasty refines the nose and helps bring it into balance with your facial structure. Before surgery, you may have been obsessed with your nose whenever you looked in the mirror, whereas after surgery, you will notice your other features and your face as a whole. Rhinoplasty improves facial harmony so that the nose appears more attractive and balanced with your other features.
27. Will rhinoplasty affect my singing voice?
It is very unlikely that rhinoplasty will affect your singing voice, but there is a small chance of a minor change. For instance, if the structure of your nose is changed, especially if your deviated septum is straightened, it may cause you to lose a bit of the nasal quality of your voice. Some singers consider this a good thing, especially if it means they will now have a more open airway for resonance. Because the nasal cavities resonate with the sound of your voice when you sing, structural changes can cause minor changes to the quality of your sound. But when it comes to rhinoplasty and singing, there should not be any concern that it will dramatically and adversely affect your singing voice.
28. Will rhinoplasty fix my deviated septum?
A technique performed at the same time as rhinoplasty can straighten a deviated septum. This is called a septoplasty, which is often combined with rhinoplasty to correct both the aesthetic and functional issues of the nose. The combined procedure is known as a septorhinoplasty. If you do not need to correct any aesthetic features of your nose but would like to fix a deviated septum to overcome a nasal blockage, you can undergo septoplasty on its own.
29. Will I be able to breathe better after rhinoplasty?
When combined with septoplasty, rhinoplasty can help you breathe better through your nose. This procedure can straighten a deviated septum to improve the nasal airways. If you have a breathing problem, a septorhinoplasty may be a benefit of your insurance.
Bonus question: Can I undergo rhinoplasty if I’m a teenager?
Forward growth of the nose is instrumental in facial development. If a rhinoplasty were to be performed on the nose before it is fully grown, there is a chance that normal nasal and, therefore, facial growth will be inhibited. This could adversely affect the development of the upper jaw, or ‘maxilla.’ Generally speaking, nasal surgery should be deferred until growth is complete. However, this varies greatly between individuals. Some children are fully grown at 14; others are not until they are 18 or 19. It is useful to compare the height of the teen with the height of his/her parents in order to assess whether growth has ceased (or perhaps almost ceased). With these provisions in place, many teens struggling with self-confidence issues because of the shape or size of their nose are eligible for rhinoplasty.
Dr. Brian Boyd is a board-certified plastic surgeon operating out of southern California. If you have more questions about rhinoplasty, please schedule your personal consultation with Dr. Boyd. Call 310.597.4734 or contact us online to request your appointment today.