Recovering from a septoplasty procedure doesn’t require too much work, in fact, less is more when it comes to a speedy recovery. This list addresses the majority of do’s and don’ts during recovery from a septoplasty procedure. There will be a complete list of post-operative instructions to follow, but these are some general tips.
1. Keep The Surgical Site Clean
Take care to not get your bandages wet by avoiding showering and taking a bath instead. Keep the surgical site clean by gently washing your face with a damp cloth and dabbing around the nose and nostrils with a cotton swab to clear away any discharge. Follow your surgeon’s instructions when it comes to changing bandages and take care to not dislodge any supportive structures that may have been placed in or around the nose. You will be instructed on how to change bandages if that is necessary. Some recoveries are fairly quick, and your surgeon will remove the bandages for you at your follow-up appointment.
2. No Sports or Strenuous Activities
Avoiding strenuous activity is key for a quick and complication-free recovery. Sports and strenuous activities will boost your heart rate and circulation which can lead to swelling and fatigue that can slow the healing process. These activities also put you at risk for injury, as there is a possibility of bumping or hitting the nose. To avoid the unnecessary pain of an injured nose and a second corrective surgery, be sure to avoid sports and strenuous activities until your nose is healed and Dr. Torkian gives you the ok.
3. Rest and Relaxation
Make sure to schedule at least seven days of time off after your procedure. The more time you can take off work with a reduced stress load, the better able your body will be to heal. Rest is vital to healing and allows the body to focus its energy on recovery. If you work from home doing a stationary job such as working from a computer, it is still prudent to take care and to reduce your workload so that you have more time to relax.
4. No Spicy or Hot Foods
Hot and spicy foods will irritate your nose and sinuses and may hinder your recovery by increasing swelling and fluid build up. Avoiding foods that are prone to irritating tissues is a must for an easy recovery.
5. Slow and Easy Walks
Getting outside and taking short walks are an excellent way to keep healthy mentally and physically during the recovery period. Walking gets the circulation going enough to draw toxins and the buildup of fluids away from the surgical site. The added oxygen and invigorated blood supply is also beneficial for healing. Walking allows you to stay active without putting any strain on your body during the recovery period.
6. Wear Contacts Instead of Glasses
Avoid wearing glasses during the first few weeks to prevent any pressure or stress from being put on the nose while it is healing. Contacts are an excellent alternative and do not involve any pressure on the bridge of the nose. If you cannot wear contacts, talk to Dr. Torkian about alternatives such as suspending your glasses from a headband while reading or just relaxing without your glasses during healing.
7. Take Care of Your Body and Keep Hydrated
Make sure to eat nutritious foods and drink a lot of water. Eating foods that are high in fiber, protein and restorative nutrients is a great way to recover quickly and reduce stress on your body. Avoid foods that are high in fat and sugar or foods that might add to bowel problems such as diarrhea or constipation that could result from the medications or anesthetics administered during surgery.
Water is an excellent way to keep swelling down and to flush toxins out of your body. Staying hydrated will keep your body healthy and happy while you recover and will promote healing. Avoid drinking alcohol during the recovery period since your body is already busy healing and doesn’t need the extra work. Alcohol may also adversely react with medications prescribed by Dr. Torkian.
8. Change Your Routine to Avoid Strain and Stress
If your usual routine involves lifting or bending down, then it is best to adjust your habits to ensure that your head always stays elevated and that you don’t strain your body. If you usually sleep lying flat, then change your sleeping position to one where your head is elevated above the rest of your body. This will reduce the amount of swelling that can occur over night. Keep any walking you do slow and short, and take time off from the gym or other more active tasks. Try to have a helper available through the first few days or the first week after the procedure to help with any household duties.
9. Balance Antibiotics with Probiotics
If you have to take antibiotics for your surgery, then make sure to balance out their effects with probiotics. Probiotics can come from supplements or foods such as yogurt or fermented foods. Probiotics can help to reduce the effects of antibiotics and should be taken at opposite times to ensure that they provide the greatest benefits.
10. Follow all Post-Operative Instructions
The most important of all is to follow the post-operative instructions provided by Dr. Torkian. Experience has dictated these instructions and the best way to avoid infections, complications or repeat surgeries is to ensure that you are following them perfectly. There will be a certain amount of time necessary to recover to the point where your regular activities are allowed. Definitely don’t try to push yourself too hard too soon as the risk isn’t worth it.
For the best outcomes and the least inconvenience the best thing to do is abide by the recovery protocols. This will ensure that your nose heals as it’s supposed to with minimal risk of complications.