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How to Sleep After Rhinoplasty?

One of the most common questions that patients ask their surgeon after rhinoplasty is how to sleep after surgery.

It’s important to take care of yourself after the procedure in a way that does not jeopardise the results.

One way to do this is by sleeping on your back with your head elevated for the first few days following surgery. This will help reduce swelling and prevent clotting in the nasal passages while also giving you some much-needed rest.

This article provides helpful tips about sleeping after rhinoplasty so that you can heal quickly and get back into life as usual!

If you are still trying to decide whether rhinoplasty is for you, you can learn more about the procedure here.

How to sleep after rhinoplasty?

Sleep in a position that does not cause any additional pain or discomfort and be careful to avoid hurting your nose since it becomes very sensitive.

After the initial recovery period, you can get back to your normal sleeping positions.

The best sleeping position after rhinoplasty

It is best to sleep on your back with your head elevated for the first few days following surgery. Your nose will be less likely to be damaged if you sleep on your back.

Keeping your head elevated by using a pillow or two will allow you to reduce swelling in less time as sleeping upright reduces swelling faster. Elevation will also help to avoid congestion build-up.

woman sleeping on her back

Pro tip: adding pillows around your body while you sleep will prevent it from rolling. Pillows can also be placed under the legs to relieve back pain.

If you notice any discomfort or pain while sleeping on your back, try propping up one side of your pillow to level out the head and neck area.

It’s also a great idea to practice this sleeping position before your surgery. This gives you time to get used to sleeping on your back and experiment with the best pillow setup to keep you comfortable.

Can I sleep on my side after rhinoplasty?

You shouldn’t sleep sideways after rhinoplasty in order to avoid damaging your nose.

In addition to adding pressure to the nose, sleeping on your side can also cause nasal congestion. Since you should avoid blowing your nose for a while after the procedure, this can cause additional discomfort.

It is generally okay to sleep on your side after the first week or two, but you should ask your surgeon before you do that.

What about sleeping on my stomach?

After a nose job, it is important not to sleep on your stomach. If you sleep on your face, you can potentially put a strain on your nose and significantly increase the odds of damaging the results of a rhinoplasty.

During the first six weeks, it is recommended to refrain from this sleeping position.

Can’t sleep after rhinoplasty?

For some patients, sleeping might not be easy during the days of recovery from surgery. If you find that you can’t sleep well, see if any of the following tips will help.

Stay hydrated

The nasal passages will become very dry following rhinoplasty and this can lead to difficultly sleeping at night or feeling congested all day long. Hydration is key for a successful recovery from rhinoplasty.

Sleep alone

When you have rhinoplasty, it is okay to be selfish instead of sharing a bed with your partner and pet. Get out of everyone else’s sleeping space and keep them out. The last thing you want is an elbow to the face or paw to the face to ruin your rhinoplasty surgery.

Pain medication

If you feel that pain is keeping you from a good night’s sleep, you can take pain medication. Over-the-counter pain killers such as Ibuprofen or Paracetamol usually work well but only use them as needed.

400mg of Ibuprofen or 500mg of Paracetamol every 6 hours seems to work well to reduce both pain and inflammation.

Cut back on caffeine

Caffeine should be avoided, as it can interfere with quality sleep. The more rest you get after nose surgery, the more quickly you will heal.

female patient in bed after surgery


How long before I can sleep normally after rhinoplasty?

Before you can resume normal sleeping normally, you would have to wait for a period of time depending on how well you have healed.

Usually, patients are able to return to their former sleeping positions within 10 to 14 days.

Please consult your physician before changing your recommended sleeping routine. It would be a shame to risk the results on something as trivial as damaging it during sleep.

Is it OK to take sleeping pills after rhinoplasty?

In spite of the importance of sleeping after rhinoplasty, you should try not to take sleeping pills. Taking sleeping pills with certain medications can cause interference.

After the surgery, if you struggle to sleep, talk to your doctor about whether taking sleeping pills might be helpful.

What happens if I roll over during sleep after a nose job?

You will be wearing a protective cast over your nose during the first week after a nose job. This should prevent any damage to your nose even in the case of putting some pressure on it due to a sub-optimal sleeping position.

However, once the splint of removed after about a week, your nose will not be completely healed for several more weeks. Do your best to get used to sleeping on your back without rolling over during this initial week.

If you really have trouble with this, consult your doctor before the cast is removed as you could potentially need it a bit longer in this case.

Can I sleep in a recliner after rhinoplasty?

Sleeping in a recliner might be a great idea during recovery for several reasons.

  • You will be sleeping alone.
  • You can surround yourself with pillows to avoid turning to your side during sleep.
  • You can adjust the reclining angle to find the optimal position that works for you. An ideal angle for sleeping in a recliner is usually between 30 to 45 degrees.
Sanjay Rai
Sanjay Rai

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