Mother of 2 kids - will be getting a nose job soon. I do everything mostly myself.

After i get my surgery will i be able to drive to pick up my kids from school? also how long will it take for my nose to recover and heal? when will i be able to go to a party and look normal?

Doctor Answers 11

Recovery from Rhinoplasty

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Recovery after rhinoplasty varies between individuals.  After rhinoplasty it is possible to have some swelling around your eyes.  It this occurs and your field of vision is slightly decreased due to the swelling please do not drive or perform hazardous activities until this swelling is reduced.  This is uncommon but as it can occur please consider the possibility.

If your surgery involves your nasal bones you should not wear glasses until this has healed adequately as glasses can affect the healing of your nose.

Most patients have only mild discomfort after rhinoplasty surgery and do not require any medication containing narcotics for pain.  If you take any medication containing narcotics do not drive or perform any hazardous activities until this wears off.  It is also possible to have some residual sedative effects after anesthesia.  If you have any of these, you should not drive or perform hazardous activities until these effects have cleared.  

Beverages that contain alcohol can impair the ability of your blood to clot.  Therefore do not drink any beverages that contain alcohol until you have adequately healed.

Please ask your surgeon about this before your procedure.

Summit Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Activity Restrictions after Rhinoplasty

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Dear Lynzz1,

After rhinoplasty surgery, you will have some activity restrictions.  You may not drive if you have taken narcotic pain medication in the 24 hours prior.  You should not lift or carry anything more than 10 pounds for 2 weeks.  You should avoid certain medications and alcohol, and take certain vitamins and herbs to reduce swelling and bruising, and to enhance healing.  Your surgeon should have addressed all of this with you.  

As for healing...the cast will be removed after seven days.  You can go to a party after that and look good.  But, your nose will still be swollen because the initial phase of healing will take 3 weeks.  Your nose will continue to become more defined and refined over the course of one entire year.  


Dr. Michelle Yagoda

Michelle R. Yagoda, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon

Rhinoplasty recovery

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Hello! I tell my patients to plan for one week of downtime. If you need narcotics, you should not be driving and you don't want to be in pain because planning was not appropriate! Most patients look good when the cast comes off at one week but bruising and swelling can persist for a couple weeks. I would recommend 3-4 weeks before big social events, just in case. good luck!

Catherine Winslow, MD
Indianapolis Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

nose job surgery

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It's important you have help with your two young children for the first few days after the procedure.  Anticipate a cast applied across the bridge in the nose for one week, and visible bruising and swelling for up to two weeks. It is possible to drive your kids to and from school, but not the day of the surgery. Full healing on the nose job is one year to allow all of the swelling to subside. Most patients are able to get back into normal social activities and exercise after two weeks. For more information about nasal surgery, please see the link and the video below

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Recovery after rhinoplasty

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Thanks for your question. You should be able to drive in 1-2 days after surgery if your eyes are not swollen and you are not taking pain medications. At 10-14 days you can go out with looking like your surgery obviously assuming everything is healing well. 

Jeffrey Jumaily, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Post op recommendations

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Being a mother is a never ending job! all of your questions are totally normal heading into a rhinoplasty, however your expected recovery will depend on several factors that only your surgeon knows at this point. Your age does play a role into the healing process and your overall health. I usually limit driving for my patients during the post operative period if they require any narcotic pain medicine, and especially within the first week. Bleeding is a risk of rhinoplasty immediately post operatively, but patients will usually have a drip pad taped under the nose after surgery. The healing process will depend, again, on the amount and type of surgery you end up undergoing. The vast majority of the bruising will resolve in the first 7-10 days, but the nose can be noticeably swollen for a few months afterwards, with most of the swelling remaining in the tip of the nose.

Typically I inform my patients the real final result takes up to a year to reveal itself, mostly because edema can be quite stubborn, especially in the tip area. It is important that you follow up regularly with your surgeon so he/she can assess your healing process and give you the best estimate! good luck!

Haena Kim, MD
Walnut Creek Facial Plastic Surgeon


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This list is precisely what your surgeon has to go over. Post op management is part of the whole package. If you weren't informed, the surgeon did not do his job. If you didn't listen, that's not good either. The most accurate information is from your surgeon.

Dennis Barek, MD (retired)
Great Neck Plastic Surgeon

We typically recommend house rest for the first week following rhinoplasty surgery.

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You may require help picking up your kids from school during the first week postoperative rhinoplasty surgery. With artful concealer, most patients may resume normal social activities around one week postoperative, and unrestricted physical activity may be resumed 21 days postoperative. The complete healing process is a year or longer. Hope this helps you. Dr Joseph

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 435 reviews


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Hello and thank you for your question.  I advise patients to take off one week from work after surgery.  Bruising should be resolved by one week.  Make sure you specifically look at before and after pictures of real patients who have had this surgery performed by your surgeon and not just a computer animation system. The most important aspect is to find a surgeon you are comfortable with. I recommend that you seek consultation with a qualified board-certified plastic surgeon who can evaluate you in person.

Best wishes and good luck.

Richard G. Reish, M.D.
Harvard-trained plastic surgeon

Richard G. Reish, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 174 reviews


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You should be able to drive when the splint is removed and you are no longer taking pain meds. Best to ask your surgeon.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.