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Sometimes the answer is right under your nose.  One of the hardest working parts of your body can affect everything from your memory center to the way you sleep at night—your nose. That’s right, your schnauze has a pretty large impact on the way you experience the world, far beyond the basic sense of smell. If you aren’t breathing just right, rhinoplasty may be the surprising answer.

What’s in a Nose?

Your nose has a fairly big impact on your life, whether you realize it or not, and it goes beyond letting you smell the roses. To help you understand how prominent it can be, we’ve compiled a list of the ways your nose works for you: Seinfeld fans may remember the scene where Kramer praises George’s girlfriend—for everything but her nose:

Scene is at 1:19

Scientists at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas say that Kramer may have had a point: as the most prominent facial feature, the nose can impact the way we perceive a person. Rumors of what a nose shape may indicate date way back: the Greeks and Romans believed that a long, strong nose meant power and strength.

While you may be largely unconcerned with how your nose is perceived, a recent study by Psychology Today reported that a person’s facial features can signal more about a person on first impressions than what they were or even the way they may act. Before you go researching what your nose shape may mean, you’ll want to figure out what it is. According to the Journal of Craniofacial Surgery, a minimum of 14 different nose shapes exist in humans. These range from the downward-hooking “hawk” to the traditional straight “Greek” nose, with the “fleshy” nose being the most common. Although ethnicity and genetics play a factor in nose shape, they’re more likely to determine the way you sneeze than exactly how your nose looks.

A Healthy, Happy NoseRhinoplasty could be the solution to medical problems like sleep apnea and sinuses.

Beyond looks, your nose also has a large impact on health. Your nasal cavities are linked to your ear and throat cavities, which can explain why discomfort with one often results in problems with another. In addition to being an amazing filter for the air you breathe in, your nose has the ability to detect over 10,000 scents and smells.

What is even more impressive than the 12 million olfactory receptor cells you have is their connection with your brain: they have a direct line to your memory. In fact, smell is the only one of the five senses with direct lines to the hippocampus (memory formation) and amygdala (emotion). If you’re experiencing problems with your sense of smell, it could also affect the formation of memories due to a lack of information when forming them. While a stuffy nose can’t be to blame for severe memory impairment, it does have an impact.

That’s not all—your nasal cavity also has an impact on the way you sleep. If your nasal cavities are impaired in any way, breathing at night can become troublesome. This in turn can lead to a variety of problems including sleep apnea, where you momentarily cease breathing while asleep.

The Nose Job That Works For You

Depending on the medical condition that urged you to look into rhinoplasty, your experience in plastic surgery may vary. In some cases, an otolaryngologist may perform the initial surgery and require you to follow up with a plastic surgeon. A nose job can be used to repair:

  • Deviated septum, or a broken nose
  • Burns, defects, and other deformations
  • Septoplasty for problems with the airway
  • Ethmoidectomy to remove the ethmoid bone and clear the sinuses
  • Polypectomy to remove any polyps in the nasal cavities
  • Turbinate removal
  • Surgery on the sinuses
  • Other surgeries including those performed for snoring, etc

If you aren’t sure of the impact your nose may be having on your medical problems, talk with your doctor. Although the nose may not be to blame, inquiring about it could be the difference between breathing easy and keeping your partner awake with your snoring! A nose job could be the solution to some medical problems.

Who Gets Nose Jobs?

Before you can dismiss the benefits a nose job may have upon your medical issues or write it off as a risky cosmetic procedure, here are some things you should know (courtesy of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons):

  • Rhinoplasty was the second most popular cosmetic procedure in 2012 overall, second only to breast augmentation. It is the most popular procedure among men, and the second most popular among women.
  • 242,683 nose jobs were performed last year
  • Nose jobs are the most popular among the 15-20 age group, and very slowly decrease in popularity with the increase in age group
  • The average cost for the procedure is $4,493, largely due to it being one of the most difficult cosmetic procedures
  • The recovery time is several weeks long, with the final results visible at around the year mark
  • While the surgery is often used to improve minor medical or cosmetic issues, the final nose shape should mimic the natural nose shape to retain symmetrical facial features

Take it from us—you aren’t alone in considering rhinoplasty. As always, you’ll want to talk to your doctor and do a thorough research of the procedure before committing. Our very own News9 did an in-depth article on what it was like to have a rhinoplasty procedure done. Once you’ve chosen an ASPS-accredited surgeon, be sure to have them walk you through what to expect. For questions or a consultation, contact us. We’d love to help you breathe easier!