The retiring Baby Boomer generation still believes you’re never too old to rock and roll. Fortunately for the “Never Trust Anyone over 30” crowd, you’re never too old for rhinoplasty – one of the most asked-for cosmetic procedures at the rate of 50,000 per year in the U.S. alone.
A handful of cosmetic physicians may disagree but the general consensus is that as long as you are in good health it doesn’t matter what the age is of the patient undergoing nasal surgery. Health – as in good health – is generally a more important consideration.
Patients aged 35-60 made up 31% of rhinoplasty patients in 2012 according to the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS). People in this age bracket are still in relatively good health, they eat proper diets rich in proteins, minerals, and vitamins, they don’t smoke or overindulge in alcohol, and they want to keep on looking good as the years add up.
Even people in their late 60s, 70s and above have the same basic goal for rhinoplasty in mind if they have few, if any, underlying health issues. They may have long desired a smaller nose, a less prominent hump, a narrower, more aquiline nose, or an overall improvement in the appearance of the nose. Or they may want to address changes that have occurred over time with age, such as a drooping nasal tip.
All of this – and more – is made possible with rhinoplasty and a skilled plastic surgeon. As long as there is good communication between the patient and physician and the patient is in good health with realistic expectations, there should be no upper age limit for having a nose job.
One thing to keep in mind, though: as we age, the healing process may take longer and, in some cases, complications could develop due to age-related factors. That is why it’s necessary for middle-aged and senior candidates for rhinoplasty to go through a complete health screening and consultation with the plastic surgeon and often their general practitioner as well.
Moreover, the aging process often is accompanied by unexpected breathing problems. This is where seniors with obstructed nasal passages would benefit the most from functional rhinoplasty. This technique is designed to correct any flaws in the functional structure of the nose rather than improving upon its aesthetic appearance.
The easy answer, then, is that age is no barrier to nasal surgery. That’s because every person is different. And every candidate for rhinoplasty needs to first have a down-to-earth talk with a qualified plastic surgeon before taking the next logical steps.