Who Undergoes Rhinoplasty
It is a popular conception that only vain people have plastic surgery, and that only rich people can afford it. These assertions are simply not true. Those who have nose jobs may indeed have been self-conscious about their noses, but there are also many other reason why people chose rhinoplasty. For example, patients may have significant breathing problems due to imperfections to the inner structure of the nose caused by an injury or because of the natural way the nose is formed. Either way, whether physical or psychological, the effects of having size, shape, or functional issues with one’s nose can have quite a negative impact on that individual’s daily life.
Rhinoplasty is taken from the ancient Greek words meaning “to shape the nose”, and it indeed reshapes the nose, either internally, externally, or both for physical or aesthetic improvement. The most common reason a person undergoes rhinoplasty surgery is because they believe the appearance of their nose is in some way detracting from the overall appearance of their face. By having their nose surgically altered, many people believe that their face is more symmetrical, more in balance, and more attractive. Obviously beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but in many cases, a noticeable positive improvement can be discerned when viewing before and after photos of the patient.
Types of Rhinoplasty
There are different types of rhinoplasty surgeries, each addressing a unique part of the shape, size, or structure of the nose. Sometimes a small change to the tip or bridge of the nose is desired, and both of these are typically easy surgeries with excellent success rates and results. A patient may prefer that the width of their nostrils be narrowed, or that the angle between their nose and upper lip be changed to improve their overall facial appearance. Another common reason for rhinoplasty is to remove what people call a hump on the dorsum or vertical surface of the nose between the forehead and the upper lip.
Not all rhinoplasty patients undergo surgery for purely cosmetic reasons. Some people are born with structural issues that affect the appearance of their nose, while others may suffer the disfigurement of their nose due to an accident or injury. One of the most common reasons people see a plastic surgeon for rhinoplasty is to correct a deviated septum. The septum is the cartilaginous divider between the two nostrils, and it can deviate from center, leaning toward one side of the nose or the other. This deviation commonly leads to problems breathing due to the decreased size of the nasal passage on one side. A chronic stuffy nose, post-nasal drip and snoring are also problems that can be reduced or eliminated entirely after a successful rhinoplasty.
While the nose is a small part of the body, a nose job is not necessarily a small job. Some surgeries are minimally invasive, closed rhinoplasties, where only a few small incisions are required to reshape cartilage or smooth a hump. Others are a bit more entailed, requiring the additional incision of the columella, or skin separating the nostrils. These open rhinoplasties are required for some bigger jobs, and usually require more recovery time.
It is important to remember that rhinoplasty is still a surgery and that your body will react accordingly. Swelling, pain, bleeding, bruising and breathing problems are all common following a nose job. Your doctor will brief you on all side effects and possible results of your surgery during your initial visits before the operation. A relatively brief recovery period is required due to bruising and swelling around the nose and eyes that can result from the surgery, as well as post-surgical bandaging and splinting that remains on the nose for 7-10 days. If proper after-care measures are taken, the rhinoplasty patient should be back to their regular routine with a nose much more to their liking within approximately two weeks.