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Rhinoplasty: Preparing for the Emotional Impact

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If you are considering undergoing plastic surgery to improve the appearance of your nose, it is likely that you have spent a great deal time researching the procedure. This probably includes locating a good surgeon, finding out how surgery is performed and preparing yourself for the potential risks and physical after effects of surgery. But you also need to look into the emotional impact rhinoplasty surgery has on its patients’ lives.

For the majority of rhinoplasty patients, the outcome is favourable, and they are extremely happy with their new nose. One flawed feature on an otherwise attractive face can be a source of much self-consciousness and a lack of confidence. Therefore, a good nose job can be enormously beneficial to the patient’s self-esteem, and they will profit both psychologically and socially. It is for this reason that an increasing number of rhinoplasty patients are teens and young adults, who are often most impacted by poor self-image and confidence issues.

Unfortunately, rhinoplasty is not a positive experience for everyone. If you are considering a nose job, you should also prepare yourself for the negative emotions you may also feel post-surgery.

Although only a minority experience real depression after undergoing rhinoplasty, most patients go through a period of feeling very down. The first reason for this is that while a nose job is not unbearably painful for most people, it does cause a lot of discomfort. You can feel very congested – as if you have a heavy cold – and it is common to temporarily lose your sense of smell, (and consequently a lot of your ability to taste), which can be unsettling. Sometimes patients have minor side effects from the medications, for instance, constipation, which can cause further discomfort and does little to improve the mood.

Make sure you follow the post-op instructions

Secondly, for a short time at least, you are physically restricted which can make many patients quite miserable. To avoid injuring the delicate post-operative nose while it is still healing you will need to avoid strenuous activity, which can be quite distressing to a person who is naturally active. There are also restrictions on how you can sleep – the head must be elevated, which necessitates sleeping in an almost upright position – which can cause patients to become quite uncomfortable, leading to a poor nights sleep and the resulting tiredness and irritability.

Going through the motions

Finally, people are often initially very disappointed with the results of their surgery. After paying out an awful lot of money for the ‘perfect’ nose, when the cast is taken off patients often find their nose doesn’t look particularly different, albeit very bruised and swollen. It is common for rhinoplasty patients to go through a short period of depression and maybe even question their decision to have a nose job. Luckily, for most patients, this depression will lift as healing occurs and the final results of the surgery become evident. A majority of patients will be very happy with their new nose.

For an unfortunate minority, real depression can result from the decision to have a nose job. In some instances, this is because they are very unhappy with the resulting nose. Between 10 and 15 percent of patients will go on to have revision rhinoplasty, whereby the nose undergoes further refinement. It is estimated, however, that as much as 30 percent of patients are unhappy with the final result, but not everyone will seek further surgery. For a minority of patients who experience depression after rhinoplasty surgery, it is due to underlying mental health conditions such as body dysmorphia.

If considering rhinoplasty surgery, it is important to remind yourself of the positive reasons why people put themselves through the stress of surgery. However, you also need to remember that for some people it can be a negative experience, and ask yourself how you would deal with it should you be one of the unlucky minority to fall into this category. For more information on Rhinoplasty, especially in Sydney area, visit