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Know Your Nose: 7 Little-Known Facts

What do you know about your nose? From snoring and sneezing to breathing and smelling, your nose has so many important capabilities. Read on for some of the most interesting, little-known facts about your nose.

  1. The overall shape of the nose is formed by age 10, and the nose is finished growing around the age 15 for girls and age 17 for boys. Most surgeons recommend that nose surgery (rhinoplasty or septoplasty) not be performed on children until their nose is fully developed.
  2. Over time, the nose lengthens and droops due to gravity and the gradual breakdown of collagen and elastin in the skin. Wearing sunscreen can help protect the nose from these signs of aging.
  3. Air enters the body primarily through the nose to fuel the entire respiratory system. The hairs in the nostrils act as a filter to block dust and germs.
  4. There are at least 14 different basic nose shapes according to a survey published in the May 2011 issue of the Journal of Craniofacial Surgery. Images of 1,793 noses were surveyed, and professor of chemical engineering Abraham Tamir, Ph.D. determined that characteristics, such as Greek (straight) to hawk (sharp with a downward hook), fell into one of these 14 categories.
  5. Rhinoplasty is the most complex and intricate cosmetic surgery performed, and it has the highest rate of revision among cosmetic procedures. This is because the procedure must be very exact: a difference of one millimeter could mean the difference between a good-looking nose and an asymmetrical or flawed nose. The way in which the nose heals, which cannot be controlled by the surgeon, also largely determines the outcome of the procedure.
  6. Nose reshaping is the second most popular cosmetic procedure (second to breast augmentation) with more than 243,000 performed in 2012, according to statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.
  7. The nose can detect over 10,000 scents, but it cannot smell natural gas, which is commonly used for heating and cooking. Since prolonged exposure to a gas leak can result in health problems, gas companies add a compound called mercaptan to natural gas to give it a perceptible odor.

As a top rhinoplasty specialist, Dr. Bivik Shah understands the importance of the many purposes of the nose and is dedicated to providing the best aesthetic and functional rhinoplasty results for his patients in the Columbus, Ohio area. If you are interested in nose surgery in Columbus or the surrounding areas of Franklin County, please contact the Columbus Institute of Plastic Surgery by calling (614) 482-2123 or fill out our online contact form today.