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Beverly Hills Profiles Blog

Recovering from Otoplasty

Friday, November 13th, 2015

If you are considering otoplasty for yourself or your child, you likely want to know what to expect during the recovery period. Parents who are considering ear reshaping or pinning for their child are often particularly worried about pain levels and downtime for their children. The good news is that most people find the recovery following their cosmetic ear surgery to be relatively easy.

At Beverly Hills Profiles, we have observed very high levels of patient satisfaction after ear surgery. For many adults, this surgery is something they have considered for their entire life and they are very eager to see the results. Children, who are particularly vulnerable to cruel playground taunts, are often relieved that they are undergoing the surgery. Perhaps it is for these reasons that many of our patients breeze through the recovery period with little complaint.

Below we’ve outlined the recovery process following otoplasty. We’ve also included 5 tips to help make the recovery process as easy and pain free as possible.

Immediately after surgery

After the surgery, our doctors will carefully wrap the patient’s head and ears with fluff bandages, a special type of cotton padding that is used to protect the ears during the initial stages of healing. A compression bandage will be placed on top to keep the fluff bandages in place and help reduce swelling. These bandages will remain in place for 24 hours.

1 – 3 days after surgery

Our doctor will examine the patient about 24 hours after surgery and remove the initial bandages. A soft headband will be used by the patient and he or she will be asked to wear it continuously as much as possible for the next week, until the majority of the swelling has dissipated.

3 – 7 days after surgery

Most patients feel comfortable returning to work or school within this time period. When you feel ready will depend upon hairstyle (longer hair will cover any lingering bruising) and activity level at work or school. Bruising is not usually a significant feature of otoplasty recovery.

1 – 2 weeks after surgery

Most patients feel completely comfortable with the appearance of their ears by the end of the second week and have no concerns appearing in public.

3 months after surgery

All swelling has dissipated and the final appearance of the ears can be seen.

Our otoplasty recovery tips

At Beverly Hills Profiles, we have performed countless numbers of otoplasties over the years. Based on this experience, we have compiled 5 tips to help you achieve the best results and recover from your ear surgery faster.

  1. Keep your head elevated as much as possible in the first days following surgery. This helps bruising and swelling to resolve faster. Use pillows to keep your head elevated at night and sleep on your back to avoid putting pressure on your ears.
  2. Keep your head cool and dry for the first week following surgery. Do not wash your hair or use hair dryers, especially while bandages are being worn. After 48 hours, you may gently shampoo and let the water run down your head.
  3. We will give you medications to alleviate discomfort and promote healing. Use these medications exactly as directed.
  4. Avoid contact sports and vigorous activity until the ears have completely healed. While this direction is easy for most adults to follow, it can be more difficult for children to refrain from active play or roughhousing. Talk to your child about the importance of protecting his or her ears during the first few weeks after surgery.
  5. Be patient and have realistic expectations. The healing process takes time and your ears will not take on their final appearance until they have completely healed. Get plenty of rest and give yourself (or your child) adequate time for recovery.

If you have any questions about otoplasty or the recovery period after surgery, please get in touch with our team. We are happy to discuss the surgery with you and answer any questions you may have.

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