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Nose injuries often occur during play, sports, car crashes, fights, and falls. Pain, swelling, and bruising are common, even with minor injuries. Home treatment can usually help relieve your symptoms.
It may be hard to tell if your nose is broken. Swelling can make your nose look crooked even if it isn't broken. When the swelling goes down after a few days, it's easier to tell if your nose is really crooked. Most doctors prefer to check an injured nose soon after the swelling has gone down. Sometimes testing may be needed, such as an X-ray or CT scan of the head, if the doctor thinks you might have other facial injuries or fractures.
Whether or not your nose is broken, a nose injury is more serious when:
Most broken noses heal without problems. When problems occur, they can include:
Treatment of a simple fracture, when the bone is still in place, usually includes pain medicine and nasal decongestants. You may or may not need a nasal splint.
If your nose is broken and out of place, it may need to be set. Most doctors like to wait for any swelling to go down before they set a broken nose. Most swelling goes down after 2 or 3 days, but it may take as long as 7 to 14 days. After the nose is set, nasal packing may be inserted. You may also get a splint. You may get antibiotics to help prevent infection if packing is used. Your doctor may want to recheck your nose and remove the packing in 2 to 3 days.
When you have a nose injury, it's important to look for other injuries to the head, face, and neck. These may include a broken cheekbone, an eye injury, an injury to the mouth or teeth, or a cervical spine injury.
Many things can affect how your body responds to a symptom and what kind of care you may need. These include:
You have answered all the questions. Based on your answers, you may be able to take care of this problem at home.
Pain in adults and older children
Pain in children under 3 years
It can be hard to tell how much pain a baby or toddler is in.
To stop a nosebleed:
Symptoms of infection in the nose may include:
Certain health conditions and medicines weaken the immune system's ability to fight off infection and illness. Some examples in adults are:
A nosebleed is severe if:
A nosebleed is moderate if:
A nosebleed is mild if:
Usually found in dirt and soil, tetanus bacteria typically enter the body through a wound. Wounds may include a bite, a cut, a puncture, a burn, a scrape, insect bites, or any injury that may cause broken skin. Tetanus can also happen with other infections, like dental infections. It can happen during a surgery or pregnancy and delivery.
A wound can be so small, you may not notice you have one. Or a skin blister could break and become an open wound. If there is any delay in finding or cleaning a wound, there is an increased risk for skin infection and a chance for tetanus to get in the wound. A tetanus infection can start 3 to 21 days after the bacteria enter the wound. Be especially careful about wounds on your fingers and toes.
Many people may not know when they got their last tetanus shot. So it's a good idea to call your doctor to see if you need one.
Make sure to stay up to date on your tetanus shots. A tetanus shot is recommended:
Symptoms of a skull fracture may include:
The symptoms of a skull fracture may appear at the time of the injury or hours or days later.
Symptoms of difficulty breathing can range from mild to severe. For example:
Severe trouble breathing means:
Moderate trouble breathing means:
Mild trouble breathing means:
Shock is a life-threatening condition that may quickly occur after a sudden illness or injury.
Adults and older children often have several symptoms of shock. These include:
Shock is a life-threatening condition that may occur quickly after a sudden illness or injury.
Babies and young children often have several symptoms of shock. These include:
Based on your answers, you may need care right away. The problem is likely to get worse without medical care.
Based on your answers, you may need care soon. The problem probably will not get better without medical care.
Based on your answers, you need emergency care.
Call 911 or other emergency services now.
Sometimes people don't want to call 911. They may think that their symptoms aren't serious or that they can just get someone else to drive them. Or they might be concerned about the cost. But based on your answers, the safest and quickest way for you to get the care you need is to call 911 for medical transport to the hospital.
Based on your answers, the problem may not improve without medical care.
Try the following tips to help relieve pain, swelling, bruising, and stuffiness when you have a minor nose injury.
Smoking slows healing because it decreases blood supply and delays tissue repair.
If you think you have a more serious nose injury or have a crooked nose, you may need to see a doctor.
Call a doctor if any of the following occur during self-care at home:
You can help your doctor diagnose and treat your condition by being prepared for your appointment.
Current as of: November 9, 2022
Author: Healthwise StaffClinical Review Board: William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency MedicineAdam Husney MD - Family MedicineKathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Current as of: November 9, 2022
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
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