We have to admit that there are different looks and sizes of noses, and there are different perceptions when it comes to which is most beautiful. What is most likely agreeable to many is how easily one can spot a crooked nose. Objectively, you can see that the nose is not following the straight curve of your face, one side leaning more towards the other. Although there are crooked noses that are hardly noticeable, some are too prominent that you can assume the owner may be having some breathing problems. Subjectively, if you are the one affected, you might wonder, ‘why is my nose crooked if I never broke it?’ Knowing full well that you did not encounter any accident or fall, you begin to presume that there is something anatomical that caused this abnormality. Don’t worry because if the deformity happened without sustaining any injury from an accident, it could just be considered as an aesthetic issue only. There are so many ways we can fix your facial defect, with or without surgery. For this article, let us discover how we can correct your crooked nose with rhinoplasty as one of the many ways you can do to address your facial deformity.
What Caused my Crooked Nose?
The truth is, there are many reasons why one would have a nasal deformity. It can be a past or recent injury that brought about the nasal fracture, severe respiratory or oral infection, or tumor formations. But the most common cause that is not an accident- or disease-related is a deviated septum. Septal deviation is an anatomical deformity that may be present at birth but may only be recognizable during adolescence. If you have this congenital defect, as you develop your facial features, you may notice that your nose dramatically changes its alignment and may look off-center. This is because the part of the nose that separates the two nostrils primarily made up of cartilage and bone is beginning to move sideways, forcing your nose to deviate to the other side.
How to Know if You have Deviated Septum
Why is my nose crooked if I never broke it?
You and your nose may be starting to gain attention because of this facial flaw, but how can you be sure that this is caused by a deviated septum? In actuality, having a deviated septum would very seldom cause you any symptom, so it is only through your appearance that you may think that you have a crooked nose. Suppose you are sure that you have never had any physical encounter that could cause your nose to be broken, no infection that may affect your mouth and nose, and no tumors present in the body. In that case, the reason may be a congenital disability. What you need to do as confirmation is to visit your primary care physician or an ENT (Ears, Nose, Throat specialist) so they can confirm the reason for your ‘broken nose’.
But if you are wondering what it feels like to have a deviated septum, then let us just say that some patients would report symptoms that they feel were caused by the deformity. This includes the following:
- Nasal congestion (plugging the nostrils one after the other to see if there is a difficulty for air to pass),
- On and off sinus irritation or infection,
- Nose bleeding (your nasal passages become dry, leading to capillary breakage),
- Snoring or sleep apnea,
- Headache (due to lack of oxygen in the brain); and
- Breathing difficulties.
If you notice a change in the way your nose looks and you experience any of these symptoms, it is advisable to have your doctor check your condition just to make sure, and so he can recommend you to visit a facial plastic surgeon for further advice.
Why is my Nose Crooked if I Never Broke it? : Diagnosis and Treatment
Upon consultation, your doctor may objectively see if the nasal deformity is obvious or not. Assessment may include history taking to rule out the presence of any injury, whether recently or in the past. He may get some blood tests to rule out infections. Palpation and inspection are no-brainers. Doctors can also use a speculum to spread the nostrils and examine the insides of your nose. This will then shed light on what caused your crooked nose. For deviated septum, your facial plastic surgeon can also require endoscopies and CT scans if the deviation or deformity is found deep or high up the nose.
Treatment: With or Without Surgery
Only your doctor can accurately recommend what treatment can address your crooked nose. If he believes that your nasal deformity can be fixed without surgery, there are several ways that he can suggest.
Facial exercise. There are nonsurgical advocates who would suggest that doing facial exercises can affect the overall shape and alignment of your face, and this includes straightening your crooked nose. They would suggest holding the bridge of your nose with your thumb and pointer fingers then pulling it upwards. This motion would somehow straighten your nasal septum, correcting your deformity. However, there is no scientific study that supports this claim. Furthermore, doctors would doubt its efficiency because our septum has bones, and they cannot be easily reshaped and moved by just your fingertips.
Fillers. Suppose that you are not bothered by any deviated septum symptoms and how it feels like, then maybe you are just concerned about how it looks. If this is the case, nonsurgical injectables using soft tissue fillers may be the answer for you. These cosmetic injectables may be made with hyaluronic acid, silicone, or CaHA gel. Note that fillers will not solve any physiological issues of your crooked nose. It is merely for masking the nasal deformity that you may have, making your nose look straight and center.
If your crooked nose causes some breathing difficulty and affects your overall health, or your facial features garner negative feedback because of your nose, your facial plastic surgeon may recommend surgical correction via rhinoplasty or septoplasty.
Rhinoplasty. Whether your deviated septum needs cosmetic or physiologic correction, rhinoplasty is greatly considered as the surgery of choice. Rhinoplasty is the surgical correction of your nasal shape, position, and height. Cosmetic wise, the proportion and placement of your nose in comparison to your overall facial features are the real goal for this surgery. On the other hand, if the crooked nose causes symptoms that affect the overall well-being of the patient, functional rhinoplasty is warranted. This type aims to correct the anatomical position of your septum to facilitate better airway and breathing.
Septoplasty. If rhinoplasty is concerned about the opening of the nose or the nostrils, septoplasty, performed by your facial plastic surgeon or otolaryngologist, is focused on aligning or straightening the septum or the nasal wall that separates the nostrils. Once the cartilage and bones of the septum are straightened, blockages and congestion that affect the breathing and sleep of the patient may easily be alleviated.
What to Expect Post-surgery
Surgical recovery may take a few weeks or months, and may sometimes require a full year to alleviate the swelling caused by the surgical manipulations. If done for aesthetic purposes, the results may be remarkable after 6 to 8 months, although the full effect can be appreciated after more than a year. Functional rhinoplasty and septoplasty won’t have instant results as well, since the nasal correction will cause swelling and bruising along the face. The relief can be felt gradually as the swelling subsides, typically after a few weeks or so.
Reminders during Recovery Period
For the first two weeks post-surgery, try to rest and stay off work. Avoid putting pressure on the nose, such as lying on the side or face down, blowing your nose, talking aloud, making exaggerated facial expressions, and touching the nose quite too often. You are also not allowed to go swimming to avoid infections. Your facial plastic surgeon may prescribe pain medications to alleviate your discomfort, so do not take over-the-counter painkillers, especially those containing ibuprofen and aspirin, because this may have bleeding side effects. Your surgeon would also encourage you to stop smoking before and after your operation since it will impede the natural healing process of the body. If you notice that there is profuse bleeding, unbearable discomfort, and difficulty breathing after the surgery, contact your doctor immediately to get urgent care. If you are still asking the question, ‘why is my nose crooked if I never broke it?’, the simple answer that we can give to that is you may have an issue with a deviated septum. If your crooked nose is obstructing your airway and breathing, it is best to consult your doctor right away. However, if you are just annoyed by how it looks, you can have an elective rhinoplasty with your facial plastic surgeon or inquire about nonsurgical soft tissue fillers for cosmetic correction.