You nose it.

It would seem rather abrupt to appear with a post suddenly announcing I just did a surgery on my nose, but here you go.

Before regaling the trials and tribulations I underwent to arrive to this day with my pisai still covered in dried blood, no, it was not a cosmetic procedure. I had wanted it to be a cosmetic procedure, but the doctor was obviously being ignorant when he said "I didn't need it," and the only way for me to have it sponsored by the SAF is for my nose bridge to collapse as a complication of this functional procedure.

For the longest time I have been plagued with ENT issues... I would actually say my whole life. I had a snoring problem that nobody knew the cause of (I even underwent sleep apnea tests!), until it stopped when I had a tonsillectomy from my chronic tonsillitis. As it turns out, my tonsils were so naturally enlarged (EVERY TIME I visited a doctor and they decide to check my throat, 95% of them would remark - in awe - at how large my tonsils were. I also have a similar reaction when they check out my di-) that they would rub against each other causing the snoring. Who would have thought right? Knn.

Secondly, I was always having a runny nose and never knew why. I actually have allergic rhinitis, but for some reason, throughout the course of my childhood, doctors only casually threw this phrase around like it was not a big deal. I was given nasal sprays since I was about 6? I would use them for a while and then stop, not only because they didn't work, but also because they tasted like shit once they travel down to your throat. At some point in secondary school, I started consuming antihistamines for what I thought was just a simple "runny nose" problem that my unfortunate being is just cursed with. For the longest time, I had assumed the antihistamines were actually flu meds and I just had a very unfortunate immune system.

Many months ago I had enough of that shit. It occurred to me that there is NO WAY any normal functioning human being is supposed to have a runny nose that often, and on top of that, on bad days I would wake up with a very irritating feeling that went up to the back of my throat as well as my hard and soft palate. It was a feeling that was so overwhelming and virtually impossible to get rid of.

That was when I did allergic tests and found out I was allergic to dust mites, house dust, and cat and dog dander. And guess what? I have a dog at home, dust is every fucking where, and obviously there would be dust mites pretty much every fucking where as well. That would explain why my allergy is perpetually TRIGGERED, causing me to feel like shit.

Even then, after receiving these findings from a private specialist, I was offered no long term solution. I was simply prescribed antihistamines, the same kinds I have been eating for the past 900 lifetimes. Doesn't make any fucking sense right?

Feeling bitter about the world, I continued living while marinating in my salt when one day, Jiarong introduced me to a clicknetwork video where Oon Shu An tried out a Sinus Rinse, because he knew I always had problems in that area. My interest was obviously piqued - what is this fascinating thing I've never seen before? Wah, available at Guardian ah? GOTTA HAVE IT. Immediately made a trip down to Guardian to get it.

So if you didn't watch a video, it's basically a squeeze bottle you're supposed to fill a saline solution with, squeeze it up one nostril, and it will flush all the triggering allergens up there down the other nostril, and everything will be fine and dandy.

Here's the shookening part - when I squeeze it through one nostril, the water did not come out the other nostril. It would come out from the back of my throat instead, indicating an obvious blockage.

I thought it was just one of my bad allergy days, so I tried again throughout the next two days, making sure I took antihistamines to prevent the same thing from happening. Didn't work. That's when I knew shit is fucked up. In fact, it literally occurred to me that for the entirety of my life, I have actually been only able to breathe out of one nostril. Obviously since the sinus rinse incident, I've been especially cognisant of this phenomenon. I thought it might be because of my deviated septum (where the bone on the inside of my nose is slanted, very common, and also a phrase the specialist mentioned but casually shrugged off), but no. The blockage appeared to vacillate between either nostril, but never both. Can't be my bone moving by itself right?

I made an appointment at a polyclinic and they agreed I had the typical throat of someone with allergic rhinitis and referred me to NUH (even though I specified I wanted SGH, but apparently NUH was faster). My doctor was amazing - he immediately suggested going for surgery, something that I probably should have been told from day 1.

Basically, my allergies cause the inside of my nose to swell, causing the blockage. But because of some sciencey shit related to an "allergy cycle", the swelling changes sides to "take turns" and let the original side rest. Wah, didn't know allergens work in a team.

So the solution was to not only straighten my very minor deviated septum (it's a very by-the-way thing actually), but also, in layman terms, remove some of the flesh inside my nose to provide a buffer for my nose to swell when it wants to without obstructing the normal airflow. In scientific terms, it's a septoplasty and a turbinoplasty. Despite my diagnosis having the letters "rhin", I was not required to have a "rhin"oplasty. Disappointed.

So anyway, the surgery was done really quickly (about 2 hours, warded for one night), though my nose was literally dripping blood for the first week because I had plastic splints inside my nose to hold my septum in place since it's been messed with and shit. On top of that, every time I spat out what I thought was phlegm would actually turn out to be dried blood clots... yep, bon appetit baby.

But one week after removing the splints, I managed to effortlessly breathe through both my nostrils for the first time in my entire life. It actually felt amazing, though I was more amazed that I lived 20 years not knowing I even had this problem.

Two weeks on, I haven't actually experienced anymore incidents of me waking up in the morning with a terribly stuffed and snotty nose, and I haven't had to blow mucus out of my nose since the surgery. I feel amazing!!! I would honestly say it's life-changing and I'm glad I did it. Feels good man!

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