Quick Tips: How To Sleep Better After Rhinoplasty

Woman stretches her left arm out while smiling in bed.

Rhinoplasty can be a very satisfying procedure, and for our rhinoplasty (nose job) patients in Orlando, we can provide patients with beautiful, natural-looking results. However, achieving these results is more than just showing up on your surgery date. You must carefully follow post-op instructions to get the best possible results. Part of these instructions includes how to sleep safely and comfortably after rhinoplasty.

Does sleeping help you heal faster after surgery?

Sleep is essential to a healthy immune system and quick recovery. Your body must work extra hard after surgery, so it’s normal to feel fatigued during the first few days post-op. Resting during this time is important so you don’t overwork your body.

Additionally, when you sleep, your body is able to dedicate more blood flow to the injured muscles and tissues. This extra blood delivers more oxygen and nutrients, which will aid healing. Lastly, sleep can play a big role in your response to pain. Getting more sleep often helps reduce the amount of pain you experience.

Before & After Rhinoplasty
Rhinoplasty | Dr. Edward Gross | Primera Plastic Surgery | Orlando, FL
Before & After Rhinoplasty
Rhinoplasty | Nose Job | Orlando , FL
Before & After Rhinoplasty
Before & After Rhinoplasty Case 759 Front View in Orlando, Florida
Before & After Rhinoplasty

Tips for Sleeping Comfortably After Rhinoplasty

I advise patients to get 8 hours of sleep per night and take naps. This is especially important during the first few days after their procedure. Here are a few tips to help you get that much-needed sleep:

1. Sleep on your back.

During your recovery, whether from rhinoplasty or revision rhinoplasty, your nose will be delicate and malleable. It is important not to sleep on your stomach or side, which can put pressure on your nose. This pressure will not only cause discomfort but may also compromise your results.

Some people also find that sleeping in a recliner helps them sleep comfortably for a good night of rest.

2. Practice back-sleeping before surgery.

Not everyone is a natural back-sleeper, so it’s important to train yourself before your surgery date. Practicing ahead of time will help you sleep on your back more comfortably after nose surgery.

One way to practice back-sleeping is to position pillows under each arm or below the knees. This will keep you from turning over onto your side or stomach during the night. If you catch yourself reverting back to your old sleeping position, don’t quit—always roll back.

Before & After Revision Rhinoplasty
Before & After Revision Rhinoplasty
Rhinoplasty | Nose Job | Orlando , FL
Before & After Revision Rhinoplasty
Revision Rhinoplasty | Orlando, FL
Before & After Revision Rhinoplasty

3. Sleep with your head elevated.

To reduce swelling, you should keep your head elevated as you sleep. This will minimize fluid buildup and promote good circulation.

Many of my patients ask how long to sleep in an elevated position after their rhinoplasty procedure. I generally ask them to sleep in that position for at least a week. They may continue to do so beyond that first week if it is more comfortable for them.

Some people also find that sleeping in a recliner helps them sleep comfortably for a good night of rest.

4. Sleep alone.

If you normally sleep with your spouse, partner, or pet, it may be a good idea to go solo for a while. An accidental fist or paw to the face could be detrimental to your recovery. It is better not to risk these potential injuries. You’ve made a big investment on your nose, so it’s in your best interest to do everything you can to protect that investment.

You can learn more about the full rhinoplasty recovery experience in our related blog post.

How long after rhinoplasty can I sleep on my side?

Once you are fully healed, you may return to whatever sleep position you like. However, I recommend continuing to sleep on your back. This position can help reduce back pain and prevent face wrinkles.

Is the recovery worth it?

It’s natural to be concerned about your recovery experience, including how you’ll sleep afterward and whether those changes to your routine will be worth it. Most rhinoplasty patients find the temporary disruption of recovery is a good trade-off for an improved nose. You can understand why they feel that way when you see their before and after photos below and in our photo gallery.

If you are ready to discuss your best rhinoplasty options with a plastic surgeon in Orlando, request a consultation online or give us a call at (407) 333-3040.

This post was originally published in October 2018 and updated in October 2023.

2 Responses to Quick Tips: How To Sleep Better After Rhinoplasty

  • Daniel acosta says:

    I have not been able to sleep for 2 full days now after rhinoplasty , my mouth shuts closed when I try mouth breathing to sleep. I’ve tried to lubricate my lips to avoid shutting but that dosent help.My throat has an infection from anesthesia tube and is extremely dry and painful. What should I do?

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