Can I Wear Glasses After Rhinoplasty?
A common question from perspective rhinoplasty patients is “Can I wear eyeglasses after my procedure?” The quick answer is that most patients should not wear glasses until cleared to do so by their surgeon. Patients may have to wait 1-2 weeks following surgery before they can wear glasses. However, some surgeons restrict patients from wearing glasses for longer periods following their procedure.
There are two reasons for this restriction: patient comfort and proper healing.
Immediately following a rhinoplasty procedure every patient experiences moderate pain and swelling of their nose (see our rhinoplasty recovery timeline post for more information on the typical rhinoplasty recovery experience). The act of wearing eyeglasses may put weight and pressure on the bridge of the nose, causing additional pain and discomfort.
It’s critical for patients to protect their nose following rhinoplasty surgery. Even though glasses are light, surgeons worry that wearing them too early post-surgery may negatively alter the underlying nasal structure which is somewhat unstable early on. In a worst-case scenario, surgeons worry that the nose can develop unwanted indentations or bumps that will negatively alter the final result.
In terms of recovery, it’s also important to note that all patients will have some form of casting over their nose for a week or two post-procedure. This often hinders the fit of glasses, making them difficult to wear.
Dr. Constantinides’ Recommendations
Dr. Constantinides does not believe that glasses do any harm to the healing process. He recommends that his patients wear their glasses immediately after surgery over their casts. After the cast is removed one week after surgery, glasses can be worn immediately, as long as they do not cause pain or soreness.
The weight of today’s lightweight lenses and frames make concerns that they will shift the nose irrelevant. The nose is structurally stable after most rhinoplasty. The cuts in the bones that glasses might destabilize are lower than where glasses sit. It’s true that glasses that fit before rhinoplasty may not fit after, but in most cases they cannot harm a result.
Additional recommendations include:
- If glasses cause soreness when wearing them, then take them off for a while.
- The weight of the glasses can be reduced by taping the glasses up to the forehead if they create soreness.
- Glasses should not be worn in the first 6 weeks after surgery if engaging in activities where the glasses might be hit. Since contact sports are avoided for 2 months, this is relatively unlikely.
- Masks that compress the face, like SCUBA or snorkeling masks, should not be worn for 2 months.