Could the Way I Sleep Change the Shape of my Nose?

Im 6 weeks after rhinoplasty and have noticed my nose more swollen than previous weeks, also the tip seems to be to the right side more. My nose looked very good and straight even with the swelling two weeks after. Why am I noticing this now? I usually sleep on my side or my stomach. Could this have an effect on my shape?

Doctor Answers 6

Sleep & the Nose

Positional sleeping does affect the results and the amount of swelling post-rhinoplasty: during the first two months.  Thereafter, be careful not to sleep in the prone position for an additional 3 months.  Best of luck!

San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Sleeping Position After Rhinoplasty

Considering that you are still in the early stages of recovery, your nose is likely changing shape due to progression in swelling and healing. There is, however, an ideal sleeping position that I always recommend to my patients following their nose job. Try to keep your head elevated with at least two pillows so as to promote blood circulation to the nose. Also, if possible, sleep on your back as opposed to your side or on your stomach to avoid excessive contact with your vulnerable, new nose.

Sam Rizk, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 73 reviews

Worried about sleeping on your nose after a rhinoplasty...

Sleeping in a position that puts pressure on the nose may prolong swelling.  In an ideal situation I would suggest to all my patients that they sleep on their back for 2 months post-operative. That is not a realistic request.  It is very difficult to change our natural sleeping positions and if you are someone who sleeps on your stomach, you will probably not get enough rest if you try to. If you can, try to sleep on your side more and not your stomach

William Franckle, MD, FACS
Voorhees Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Sleeping with pressure on the nose 6 weeks after a rhinoplasty will have no lasting effects on the operation.

A nose will go through changes for several months after surgery.  Sleeping on the nose 6 weeks after surgery might cause a slight increase in temporary swelling but it will have no effect on the long term outcome.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Post rhinoplasty and sleeping position

At six weeks post rhinoplasty it should be safe to sleep on your side without this position causing a problem.  However, if you are lying face down and rubbing you nose in the pillow it could accentuate or prolong nasal swelling.  Check back with your surgeon to see if they have and concerns about your progress in healing.

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Way Of Sleep Affecting Rhinoplasty Results

Dear Simplelife12,


It is possible that if you are applying considerable pressure on your nose to be disadvantageous. Nonetheless, without physical examination it is hard to give you with an exact diagnosis. That said, you should not be too concerned and have trouble sleeping.


At 6 weeks post surgery, your nose can undergo changes and swelling may have subsided more on one side than the other.

Usually, it takes about a year so you can establish final results but you need to be a little more patience and let nature takes its course.


Best of luck to you and thank you for your inquiry.

Dr. Sajjadian

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 195 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.