Nose reshaping surgeries are the most common cosmetic surgical procedures, ranking above facelifts, liposuction, and breast augmentation. But you might think that you are too old for rhinoplasty or that it won’t help much at your age.
That’s far from the truth. Rhinoplasties can help patients at any age, particularly in later years, achieve the appearance they always wanted and improve any functional or structural nasal issues.
Keep reading to discover all that rhinoplasty in West Hills can do for you—regardless of your age.
Rhinoplasty: An Overview
Rhinoplasty (also called a nose reshaping procedure or a nose job) is a surgical procedure that restructures the nose. Patients may want rhinoplasty to improve the appearance of their nose, or they may need surgery to address functional issues like improved breathing and sleeping. And sometimes, it’s a combination of aesthetic and functional reasons.
There’s a general perception that younger adults are the ones who get the most cosmetic procedures, especially rhinoplasties. However, that’s not completely true.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons’ 2020 report, older adults receive the largest percentage of cosmetic surgical procedures—30% of patients are between 40 and 54, and 32% are between 55 and 69. And one of the most common cosmetic procedures for older adults is rhinoplasty.
In fact, plastic surgeons completed nearly 80,000 nose reshaping procedures just on patients between 40-54 years. Patients 70 and older also received nearly 5,000 rhinoplasties, much more than liposuction and breast lifts.
Put simply, rhinoplasties are quite popular with older adults.
Why Older Adults Consider Rhinoplasty
This popularity results for several reasons.
As people age, their nose changes. A common misconception is that the nose continues growing, but that is technically inaccurate. The nose doesn’t grow during adulthood but undergoes structural changes as the skin loses its elasticity and the cartilage weakens.
These natural aging processes can cause the tip of the nose to droop, pieces of cartilage to separate, and the entire nose to lengthen. The result is a larger nose that may exaggerate unwanted features, like a hooked tip, that weren’t that noticeable before.
Older patients often use plastic surgery to rejuvenate their faces. One of the best places to start is with the nose – especially since it’s one of the facial features that change the most with age.
Anti-aging efforts are just one reason older adults seek rhinoplasty; another is improving the nose’s function. The interior cartilage weakens and shifts with age, which can cause the nasal septum to shift. As a result, the nasal passages can become blocked or inflamed, causing breathing difficulties, poor sleeping habits, and chronic sinus infections.
Even patients who had their dream nose in their youth might need a rhinoplasty as they get older to repair the nose and improve its functionality.
Aesthetic Benefits of Rhinoplasty for Older Adults
As mentioned above, rhinoplasty can help rejuvenate patients’ appearance and enhance facial harmony. One of the most common requests in older adults is to address the drooping tip, which typically occurs with age.
Not only can rhinoplasty help reshape parts of the nose that have shifted or dropped with age, but it can also help with some other facial features. For example, the surgeon can make minor changes in the cheeks to address deep creases.
Functional Benefits of Rhinoplasty for Older Adults
Rhinoplasty can also help straighten the nasal septum. Deviated septums are surprisingly common, affecting 70-80% of people. And part of the reason they’re so common is that they can occur naturally with age.
Older patients might suddenly have trouble breathing and sleeping and experience chronic sinusitis because of a deviated septum. A rhinoplasty can fix the nasal septum and reopen the nasal airways, allowing patients a better quality of life.
Safety and Considerations for Older Adults Undergoing Rhinoplasty
All surgery carries risks, and rhinoplasty is no exception. However, it is a fairly safe procedure for patients of all ages.
Surgical risks are generally connected to a patient’s overall well-being and health status rather than their age. For example, someone in their 30s with comorbidities like diabetes, hypertension, and respiratory conditions will be at a higher risk for surgical complications than a 70-year-old patient in optimal health.
Granted, older patients may be more susceptible to mental decline like dementia, which raises concerns about the effects of anesthesia. The American Society of Anesthesiologists explains that older patients have a higher risk of post-operative delirium and memory loss.
However, with an experienced surgeon, older patients can develop a thorough pre- and post-operative plan for optimal results. This includes a discussion of post-operative care and how long it might take to heal. Older patients may need more recovery time, so they should discuss post-op care and set realistic expectations.
Choosing the Right Surgeon
Although there are risks with a rhinoplasty, an experienced surgeon can minimize potential complications. Older adults should look for a qualified surgeon with years of experience doing rhinoplasties on people their age.
Ideally, the surgeon will show pictures of several procedures so patients can understand what to expect. Patients should also consider testimonials—not only on the specialist’s website but also on other review pages.
An initial consultation can also provide much insight into a surgeon’s experience and professionalism. Patients should ask about their surgical options and raise any concerns, paying close attention to how the surgeon responds.
Preparing for Rhinoplasty as an Older Patient
The first preparatory step is finding an experienced plastic surgeon. After that, it’s important to establish healthy habits leading up to the surgery.
Older patients should make sure to maintain an exercise routine—even if it’s as simple as taking a daily walk—to stay healthy and encourage blood flow. They should also try to eat healthy and drink plenty of water to prepare their body for the upcoming surgery. If a patient smokes, they should stop at least four weeks before the surgery to promote optimal healing.
Another consideration is skincare. A daily cleansing and moisturizing routine before the rhinoplasty can go a long way toward keeping the skin healthy. They should also apply daily sunscreen to avoid any sun damage or burns right before the surgery.
During one of the initial consultations, patients should ask the specialist about the medications they are currently taking. Some medicine may interfere with healing, so patients should be prepared with a list of all their current medications. Shortly before the surgery, patients need to ask for a prescription refill on all of their medications. They may not feel well enough to drive for and go pick up prescriptions, so they should make sure they have all their medication before the surgery.
Patients should also be sure to allow plenty of time for rest. Ideally, they should take off at least a week of work and ask family or friends to help with cooking and housework.
It doesn’t matter how old you are: You can safely get a rhinoplasty in West Hills for aesthetic and functional reasons. The key is finding an experienced, qualified surgeon who can help you achieve optimal results and experience a safe recovery.
Talk to a surgeon today about your options and be sure to provide your complete health history and any current medications.