When your child tells you “My nose is paining”. “There is a painful bump inside my nose.”
Do you laugh it off?
Do you think “Oh it is just a zit inside the nose – it will go away”?
You shouldn’t. It can be dangerous.
Your child’s nose is probably paining because there is a painful boil inside the nose. A painful boil inside the nose is also called furuncle inside the nose and cannot be ignored even for a few hours because it can turn into a life threatening condition.
What causes a painful boil in the nose?
The most common cause of a painful boil in the nose is ‘picking the nose’ or ‘digging the nose’.
- When the air passes through the nose – the dust and dirt particles are trapped by the mucus in the nose.
- As more and more air passes through the nose – the mucus with the dirt in it – which was originally moist – dries up and becomes crust like.
- This crust is irritating and children poke their noses with their fingers to remove this crust.
- Children’s fingers are almost always dirty and full of germs.
- When children poke their noses to remove the crusts – they transfer these germs to the nose.
- If they have long nails – they also end up causing tiny cuts inside the nose.
- The germs enter these cuts.
- The germs inside the cut are the cause of the painful boil that your child then comes to you complaining about.
If your child has recurring boils in the nose – make sure you keep his/her nails short. Also gently remind your child not to dig the nose and tell her/him about the consequences of doing so.
Also read Nose picking is not just a bad habit. It is dangerous
Why is a painful boil inside the nose dangerous?
Watch the video for a quick explanation of what to do when a child has a painful boil in the nose.
A detailed explanation follows below the video
When a child has a painful boil inside the nose it can be dangerous and life threatening because the nose is situated in the dangerous area of the face
The Dangerous area of the face is a triangular area on the face and injuries or infections in this area are dangerous because they can quickly spread to the brain.
The base of the triangle that makes up the dangerous area of the face is made up of the mouth. The apex of the triangle lies at the midpoint between the two eyes. When two straight lines are drawn from the midpoint between the brows to the corners of the line forming the mouth – the triangle that is formed is called the dangerous area of the face.
This area is dangerous because the veins from this area of the face drain straight into the brain. This means that if there is an infection in this area of the face i.e. if there is any infection in the nose or on the upper lip – the infection from here can be carried to the brain very quickly by the veins.
Also read The dangerous area of the face. Why is it dangerous?
How do you treat a painful boil in the nose?
It is extremely important to treat a painful boil in the nose immediately because the nose is part of the dangerous area of the face.
It is also important to stay alert until the last signs of infection in this area have been wiped away and the child is completely well again.
Home remedies for a painful boil in the nose
As soon as you notice a boil in your child’s nose – plunge into action immediately
- Apply warm moist compress. For this boil a cup of water with a pinch of salt. Boil it well for about 5 minutes to ensure that the water becomes germ free. Take a clean piece of cotton cloth – dip it in the hot water and apply it to the boil. Do not put the same cloth back in the water. Use a different cloth to apply the compress the second time and third time. Do this 3 times a day. This should help the boil to open up and drain. Try this for one day.
- If the boil opens up and drains keep it clean and continue using warm compresses a clean one every time.
- Wash your hands with soap every time you apply warm compress
- Do not attempt to squeeze or pop the boil as it can make the infection spread and become worse.
Keep a close watch on the boil and the child as you apply home remedies. If there is any sign that the boil is increasing in size, becoming more painful, or if the child begins to look sick or develop fever or if the child looks drowsy or disoriented – rush the child to the emergency department of the hospital.
If you are using a home remedy – ensure that the infection has been completely eliminated and the boil does not exist at all and the child is completely well again before you relax. If it looks like there is no improvement after applying the warm compress or if the boil reduces in size slightly and then shows no sign of reducing further – make sure you consult your doctor.
What will a doctor do for a painful boil in the nose
- It is best to consult a doctor in case of a painful boil in the nose so that the infection can be completely eliminated rapidly.
- If the boil in the nose is small – the doctor is likely to prescribe an ointment
- If the boil has been around for longer and is very painful and big – the doctor may prescribe antibiotics to be swallowed
- If the boil in the nose is causing pain and fever it may even be necessary to admit the child and give injectable antibiotics.
If your child complains of a painful boil in the nose – never neglect it and think that it will go away. It is an infection in the dangerous area of the face. And delaying treating an infection or injury in this area of the face can be dangerous. Never take the risk.
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