Broken noses are not uncommon. You can break your nose playing contact sports, getting in a fight, car accident, falling down, or just running into a door. Because your nose is mostly cartilage, the break itself will most often be over the bridge of the nose. So how do you know if you have a nasal fracture, or you’ve just been hit in the face hard enough to bruise your nose?
In extreme cases, you will be able to tell right away, as the nose will immediately look different, swollen and resting to one side or the other. Nasal fractures often come with heavy bruising under both eyes, swelling of the nose, and difficulty breathing. If you think you have broken your nose, you should go to the doctor immediately to set and treat it and to ensure that you do not have any other injuries. Concussions are common with trauma to the head and face, and you should have your doctor check you out thoroughly, just in case.
Surgery is not necessary for many nasal fractures. The nose is reset and bandaged. Then the patient spends the recovery time taking ibuprofen and feeling a bit silly for wearing a bandage on their face all the time. Once healed, however, despite being reset, your nose may still appear different than it did before.
You may have a notch on the bridge of your nose, or it may point slightly to one side or the other. Some people who’ve had multiple nasal fractures joke that, after being broken to one side, then the other, that, “My nose is more straight than it was when I was born!” This is not something to count on, though. If you are unhappy with the shape or angle of your nose after it has healed from a break, you may want to consider rhinoplasty.
Reshape your nose and breathe better
Rhinoplasty, commonly called a nose job, is a type of plastic surgery that can be done for purely aesthetic or for medical reasons. Many people associate rhinoplasty with Hollywood stars and their vanity, with completely reshaping the nose, but this is not always the case. If you’ve suffered from a broken nose, and you simply want to go back to the way you looked before, with a straight nose and no notch on the bridge, rhinoplasty can help you. This mild surgery could give you back the face you’ve grown accustomed to seeing in the mirror your entire life.
Another reason to consider rhinoplasty after a broken nose is potential breathing problems caused by the break. If, when your nose was broken, your septum is displaced, the doctor will often call for immediate nasal surgery to ensure that you can breathe properly. If, after your broken nose has healed, you have difficulty breathing, or you find you’re having snoring problems or issues with sleep apnea, you may need to consider rhinoplasty to correct these issues and breathe normally again.
Any injury that affects your nasal passages should be taken seriously. If you’ve broken your nose and gone to the emergency room to have it set, you should make a follow up appointment with your doctor. Your doctor can tell you whether or not you need to speak with a rhinoplasty specialist. If you’re all healed up, but you find it difficult to look in the mirror, you should also consult with at least one rhinoplasty surgeon. As is the case with most surgery consultations, a second opinion is always a good idea when looking at nasal reconstruction. Whether you choose to get nasal surgery for aesthetic or medical reasons, you want to make sure that you’ve made your best choice of doctor and procedure.