Septoplasty Recovery Time – How Long Does it Take?

Mirror 3D Imaging
before and after septoplasty surgery comparison

Septoplasty is a standard outpatient procedure performed to fix a deviated septum and allow better airflow through the nose. When performed by an experienced surgeon, septoplasty can be a permanent fix to any longstanding breathing problems.

While septoplasty involves minimal incisions and recovery is less complicated than other surgeries, you will still need to take some time off work and practice patience while your body recovers.


Septoplasty recovery day by day

Healing after septoplasty will vary with each individual; however, you can expect a timeline similar to the following:

Day of surgery:

Most patients go home after the surgery with their noses dressed and packed. You can expect some swelling, pain, and fatigue.

2 days post-surgery:

You will attend a check-up appointment with your surgeon to remove the dressings in and around your nose.

5-10 days post-surgery:

By now, you should see a significant decrease in the swelling, and breathing will become easier.

1-2 weeks post-surgery:

Your splints will be removed, and you can consider heading back to work.

3 weeks post-surgery:

As your nose starts to heal, you can begin light activities; just ensure you avoid anything that will put too much pressure on the nose.

6-12 weeks post-surgery:

As your body enters the final stages of healing, you will truly start to feel the real benefits of your septoplasty procedure.


Septoplasty Recovery Tips

Your surgeon will provide you with a detailed care plan for your septoplasty surgery, which can include tips such as:

  • Rest as much as possible
  • Avoid rubbing, blowing, or touching the nose
  • Sneeze through the mouth
  • Take any pain medication as recommended by your Dr.
  • Avoid aspirin or any anti-inflammatory drugs to prevent excessive bleeding
  • Restrict any strenuous activity like lifting, running, or contact sports
  • Sleep with your head elevated to decrease swelling and congestion
  • Avoid using steroid nasal sprays
  • Use an ice pack to reduce pain and swelling
  • Steer clear of anyone that is sick, or overly dusty/smoky environments to prevent sinus irritation or illness

Ask an expert about the surgery and septoplasty recovery time

Dr. Sedgh is a double board-certified facial plastic surgeon who uses the most advanced surgical techniques to ensure his patients experience the best care, recovery, and final result. If you are considering septoplasty or other rhinoplasty procedures, book a consultation with Dr. Sedgh today.


Frequently asked questions:

How long after septoplasty until I can breathe better?

While your incisions will heal quickly and pain and swelling should decrease within two weeks, it can take between 3-6 months to properly feel the benefits of the surgery as your cartilage and nasal tissue heal. With that in mind, you will notice more short term incremental improvements in your breathing once any dressings and packing have been removed.

How long should you take off work after septoplasty?

Your body needs time to heal, so while you can go back to work after one week, it is recommended you allow for at least two weeks’ leave. Use this as an opportunity to catch up on a TV show, read a book and truly relax while you heals.

Posted on behalf of Sedgh Plastic Surgery


When under our care, Dr. Sedgh always ensures you feel comfortable, cared for, well-informed about every aspect of your upcoming treatment, whether surgical or non-surgical. With an approach which focuses on achieving refreshed, natural-looking results, Dr. Sedgh prides himself on always acting with transparency, honesty, and the highest level of ethical treatment, from start to finish.