How Long Does it Take to Recover from a Rhinoplasty?

male-rhinoplastyRhinoplasty, a procedure better known as a nose job, is generally performed to help the patient achieve a more attractive nose. It can also help treat breathing problems caused by nose structure problems.

The procedure involves either changing the shape of bones and cartilage in the nose, or adding tissue, sometimes grafting it from another part of the body or using synthetic materials.

The procedure usually takes between 1.5 or 2.5 hours, but the results will last a lifetime. But what about the recovery time? Here are some tips from The Cosmetic Surgery Companion, a 2010 book by author, journalist, and cosmetic surgery consultant Antonia Mariconda.

The big picture

Your recovery and healing will depend on the procedure, but here are some basics to consider. You may need to stay overnight in the hospital, and the procedure often involves a general anaesthetic.

You’ll usually be back to work between 7 and 10 days after the procedure, and you can hit the gym again after two weeks, according to Mariconda.


Results appear over time

You will experience some swelling that goes down within a few weeks. Aside from the swelling, the results will probably appear over the next year, as you begin to notice “changes in the appearance of your nose as it refines to a more permanent outcome.”

Dressings last about one day

Your surgeon may have you wear packs or “dressings” in your nostrils for a day or so after the procedure. This is meant to keep you from breathing through your nose. The doctor may also require you to sleep at the hospital so your packs can be removed the next day.

Splints and dissolving stitches

The surgeon may place a splint over the nose to support the recovery process. These may stay in place for between seven and ten days. You will also have dissolvable stitches inside your nostrils that will disappear within ten days, writes Mariconda. Those stitches are used to close the skin of your nostrils after the doctor sculpts the underlying structure of your nose.

Anaesthetic effects

The hazy feeling caused by the anaesthetic will vary depending on whether or not the doctor puts you under with a general anaesthetic, or merely applies an intravenous sedative. In either case, Mariconda advises that people undergoing this surgery arrange for a friend to drive them home, or stay overnight with them at the hospital.

Post-procedure medication

It’s a good idea to rest until the effects of the anaesthetic have worn off, and then to take any pain medication prescribed to help with some post-procedure discomfort that you may feel.

“When you go home, you can take over-the-counter painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen,” adds Mariconda.

Considerations for a smooth recovery

Here are some tips so that you know what to expect before you undergo your nose surgery, and so your recovery is as smooth as possible.

  • Abstain from alcohol and take a break from hot baths for two weeks following the procedure.
  • If you experience nasal congestion, try propping your head up with several pillows at night.
  • Avoid all nose sprays and decongestants, and don’t blow your nose for one week, minimum.
  • You may experience some nose bleeds, but you can reduce the risk by keeping your head up
  • Buy some lip balm, because you’ll be breathing through your mouth for a few days, which tends to cause dry lips.
  • If you feel a sneeze coming on, try to “cough it out” instead.
  • Note that you may experience some numbness, especially at the tip of your nose, which may last a few months. A certain feeling of stiffness in your nose may be permanent.
  • You may also experience a temporary loss of smell. This may also be permanent, Mariconda notes. This is one of the risks people take when undergoing surgery.
  • In certain cases a second procedure helps fine-tune the finished product.

*Learn more at the Rhinoplasty Centre*

The best advice for anyone considering rhinoplasty is to learn as much as possible about the procedure and consult with a doctor about whether this surgery is right for you.

During a consultation at Dr. Solomon’s Rhinoplasty Centre in Toronto, patients get the opportunity to “try on” a new nose using computer imaging technology.

He is one of just twelve surgeons in the province certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

His other credentials working as Chief of Surgery at York Central Hospital and serving on the faculty at the University of Toronto. He has performed more than 1,000 rhinoplasty procedures.

Anne Flemings is a very energetic mother of two. Apart from being an interior designer she is interested in the fashion industry. She is an enthusiastic person and believes in living life to its fullest. She writes columns and blogs on various topics and she can be followed on twitter at
In this article she has written about the recovery process of a rhinoplasty surgery. She has given some helpful tips that will help in making the recovery easier and faster.

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