The Complete Guide to Nose Health & Nose Issues

Noses serve an important purpose. Not only do they let us smell some of life’s simple pleasures, like fresh baked cookies and spring flowers, but they can also alert us to dangerous odors, like gas, and play a large role in how food tastes.

Nose problems, such as congestion, are often just a nuisance, but in some cases are a sign of a larger issue at hand. At ENT & Allergy, our board-certified allergists and otolaryngologists work together to diagnose and treat nasal breathing problems. Whether it’s through an allergen test or nasal surgery, our ear, nose, and throat doctors work with you to find a treatment that can alleviate nose problems and meet your expectations.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common nasal issues patients face so you can understand how to mitigate them or find proper treatment.

Common Nose Ailments

There is a lot going on in your nasal cavity to make your olfactory operate, and considering it’s also connected to your throat and brain, it’s especially important to keep things working smoothly. These are some of the most common nose problems that you may or may not experience over your lifetime. Keep in mind that more often than not they are caused by environmental factors.

  • Chronic sinusitis: This is when your sinuses are inflamed for more than 12 weeks (different from your average sinus infection). It may or may not be accompanied by nose polyps, which are soft, painless growths that line your nasal passages and sinuses.

  • Allergic rhinitis: An inflammation of the membranes lining the nose. This can be uncomfortable but easily treated with the proper regimen.

  • Deviated septum: A deviated septum is when the thin wall between your nasal passages is displaced, making one nasal passage smaller than the other. When significant, it can cause difficulty breathing.

  • Nasal infection: Bacteria and viruses can also affect your nose. In this case, you may need antibiotics or a certain nasal spray to kill off the infection.

  • Nasal fractures: A nasal fracture typically occurs from blunt trauma, but it often a result of contact sports, falls, and physical fights. When the bridge of your nose is fractured, it not only hurts but can also cause difficulty breathing.

Nose Infection Symptoms

Nose problems present themselves in a few very noticeable ways. These are some typical symptoms of a nose infection or other problem that you may notice, and while not every one is a cause for concern, seeing an ear, nose, and throat doctor may help you resolve any issues safely and effectively.

  • Dripping nose: While a runny nose is common when you have a cold, constant dripping may be a symptom of a more persistent problem.

  • Bloody nose: Epistaxis is defined as bleeding from the nose, sinuses, or nasopharynx. The key to proper treatment and relief is the correct diagnosis.

  • Post nasal drip: Contrary to popular belief, post nasal drip is a symptom and not, in fact, a diagnosis. Post nasal drip is the sensation that excess mucus is dripping down the back of the throat from the nose. It may be caused by allergies or an infection.

  • Congestion: Nasal congestion, or difficulty breathing through the nose, is a very common issue affecting many patients. Mucus in nose that causes congestion is typically a result of allergies or a structural issue.

  • Pain: Soreness and tenderness, especially when it extends to the bridge of your nose and forehead are signs of a sinus infection. If it lasts for weeks, it can be a more severe infection.

  • Loss of taste and/or smell: Primary problems of taste, called dyspepsia, can be from local tissue inflammation of the tongue, gums, or mouth. While loss of smell can mean there’s a blocked nasal airway.

Strategies For Healing

The best thing you can do for your nose is to not irritate it with unnecessary sprays, scents, or objects. Wash your hands regularly so if you do touch your nose, you’re not passing on any bacteria or viruses. To manage mucus and allergies, you may use a saline (salt water spray) or nasal wash to rinse your nasal passages.

However, if you have a nose fracture or deviated septum, cosmetic nasal surgery may be necessary. Always consult with your doctor to determine the best plan of care for you.

Finding a Nose Doctor

Finding an experienced ear, nose, and throat doctor is a comprehensive way to receive treatment for common and complex nose ailments and is an important part of your overall health. Now more than ever, it’s essential to take nasal health seriously and be proactive about the proper treatments that can mitigate common nose issues and even COVID-19 symptoms.

At ENT and Allergy Associates, our physicians are trained in everything nose health, including pediatric care. Contact the team for more information on our patient services and how to find an ear, nose, and throat doctor near you.

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