- What causes pimples inside nose?
- Symptoms of pimples inside nose
- How to prevent pimples inside nose?
- How to get rid of pimples inside nose: medical and natural treatment options
Pimple (sometimes also called a zit, bump or spot) is a type of comedo or acne. Comedo is caused by clogging of hair follicle (pores) in the skin. Skin debris mixes with oil to clog the follicle. The follicles have sebaceous glands inside them that produce sebum. As the outer layer of skin sheds continuously, the dead skin cells after glued together by sebum causes the follicles to block. This generally happens when person’s skin becomes thick at puberty.
Sebum is continuously produced by sebaceous glands but it builds up behind this blockage of follicles. As this sebum contains many bacteria like the species of Propionibacterium Acnes that result in infection and inflammation (1, 2). Pimples are the most common of all the problems that affect both adults and teenagers (3). Although having pimple is common among teenagers during puberty (due to their surging hormones) but sometimes adults also suffer from them even in their thirties. Pimples are of many types some of which are as follows (4):
The pimples are differentiated into whiteheads and blackheads on their degree of inflammation. They are both the same with the exception that whiteheads leave the tip of follicle plug white whereas in the case of blackheads the cells plugging the follicle oxidize turning into a black material. Dirt does not causes blackheads and washing them off with soap, water, cleaning agents and even frequent scrubbing can worsen the condition.
Pimples inside the nostrils are much different from those on the outer layer of skin. It is most commonly a case of localized folliculitis due to primary bacterial infection but it may also be caused secondarily due to other conditions of nose or sometimes systemic conditions and also due to some foreign body that blocks the ducts of glands leading to blockage and inflammation. Most commonly it is gram positive bacteria that causes such pimples. This generally occurs due to long term use of acne antibiotics. This results in overgrowth of gram positive bacteria inside the nose.
The reason for it normally is the imbalance of the bacteria populating inside one’s nostrils. Pimples inside the nose are related to chronic antibiotic use that while killing all the good bacteria and leaving behind the bad ones result in infection. Staphylococcus is another species of bad bacteria that causes pimples inside the nostrils. There are also other bacteria in nose and mucous membrane causing pimples. Pimples inside the nose are difficult to locate. Infection is deep rooted and sebum inside also forms cyst by hardening. The cyst causes blockage exacerbation and condition usually worsens.
Folliculitis is one of the most frequent causes of zits (not just inside nose but also on chin or elsewhere on the skin) (5). This condition of skin that causes hair follicles to get inflamed. Normally it is caused by bacteria or fungal infection. At first they may look like red bumps or whitehead pimples but if the infection spreads they can turn into crusty sores. Not life threatening but still can be very itching, sore and embarrassing. The bacteria responsible for folliculitis is called Staphylococcus Aureus. However folliculitis may also be caused by viruses, fungi, inflammation and in-grown hair. There are two types of folliculitis i.e.:
It is a type where whole hair follicles are involved. It has the following forms:
This type includes the following forms:
One of the possible causes for pimples either inside or outside nose is infection. At start this pimple is reddish and firm but with the infection continuing, it swells up resulting more pain, redness and filling up with pus.
General causes of the infection include:
All these result in mucosa lesions. These lesions allow the bacteria to break the natural defense barrier and cause infection. Pimples if grow bigger in size turn into boils or abscesses. These are collection of pus that is red, warm and sensitive to touch often accompanied with fever. Regional lymph nodes, which are the immune structures attacking the bacteria, can also become swollen due to this infection.
Another cause of nose bumps might be sinusitis (6). This happens due to an allergic reaction or by an infection. This causes inflammation accompanied with clogging following excess mucous production.
Whenever we inhale dust, pollen, smoke or any other pollutants, it causes the mucosa inside the nose to swell. This allergic reaction is also a cause for the formation of pimples inside the nose due to the clogging in the hair follicles (7). Nose in this condition can become red, swollen and sensitive to touch, mainly when you sneeze.
Nasal polyps are also one of the causes for pimples inside the nose as they are similar to Sinusitis. Polyps are tear shaped growth inside the nose that may develop in association with allergic conditions and persistent stimulus. They can block the nasal passage and also the hair follicles resulting in pimples due to collection of mucous production.
Foreign bodies stuck inside the nostrils of children are a common causes of the pimple formation. These foreign bodies can be a bead or a toy. If they are stuck and remain undetected for few days, they can ultimately damage the mucosa resulting in the form of infection that in turns cause pimples. This leads to severe itching by the child, which causes further damage to the insides of nostrils.
One of the causes for pimples to form inside the nostrils is the blockage of pores due to the bacteria residing inside (8). Bacteria borne pimples are very difficult to treat because of one’s inability to change the environment inside the nose. Some of the bacteria that cause blockage of pores are Staphylococcus bacteria and gram negative bacteria.
Picking your nose can result in pimple formation. Sticking the fingers or any other object to scratch inside of your nose results in the damage to the sensitive nerve endings. This also causes broken capillaries and scratches. If they are left untreated they can get infected and form pimples.
Trimming the hairs inside the nose with scissors or pulling them with tweezers results in tiny nicks that can become infected with bacteria eventually turning into pimples. On the other hand, if these hairs are not removed carefully and become too long then these can get clogged in pores causing irritation and pimples formation.
These types of pimples are often problematic and very difficult to treat. The only solution is to observe nasal hygiene and avoid unnecessary pulling of hair inside the nostrils.
Another cause of pimples is irritants from the air we breathe. We breathe in chemical propellants, dust and other irritants from our nose on daily basis. These irritants are absorbed by inside lining of the nose resulting a pimple formation within hours of exposure.
Hormonal disorders in women are very common causes of the pimple formation inside nostrils (9).
If you’re not in the habit of cleaning your nose regularly then it can lead to the attachment of viruses or bacteria to the nose lining ultimately turning into pimples. However, it must be remembered that cleaning the nose too violently can actually do more harm than good so be gentle with your nose.
Believe it or not, unhealthy diet and high stress level is also one of the causes of pimple formation.
Eating unhealthy food aids in growing bacteria and similarly high level of stress disrupts the hormone cycle provoking pimples even inside nostrils.
Zits inside nose are generally associated with the following symptoms:
Infected pimples may also trigger the following conditions:
If you suffer from any of the above symptoms then you are advised to see a doctor as soon as possible. Before you can go to your doctor, following are some of the preventions a person suffering from pimples inside nostrils should take to prevent further worsening of the problem.
Pimples inside the nostrils are not that much of a risk and can be cured by simple home remedies and medicines at home. However, if the pain and swelling increases after few days of using nonprescription medications and home remedies then it is best advised to see a doctor for further diagnosis. The treatments and remedies for pimples inside the nostrils are as follows:
Zits in nose can be cured by some topical over the counter medications. Topical means that the medicine should be applied on the surface of the pimple and not swallowed or injected. Most commonly used pharmaceuticals for treatment of pimples inside nose are (11):
They are generally available as gels, lotions, and creams. Benzoyl peroxide kills bacteria and decreases oil production. Resorcinol, sulfur and salicylic acid help break the pimples. They also help reduce inflammation and swelling. Azelic acid strengthens cells that line your follicles and also reduces bacteria growth. Retin-A unplugs nasal pores by loosening the cells on skin surface. It is advised that you use low concentration of these medications and you should never use them without prior consent of your physician.
Be careful when using pharmaceuticals to deal with your zits as they may have some side effects. So always read the prescription details very carefully and if you experience any of the adverse reactions below, contact your physician immediately:
Another well known topical pimple medication is Mupirocin. It is to be applied with cotton swabs 5 to 8 times a day.
Sometimes your doctor will prescribe you oral or IV medication (usually antibiotics) to deal with pimples. Antibiotics help reduce inflammation and prevent sepsis but should not be taken for a long period and you should never combine topical and oral antibiotics (12). The most commonly used antibiotics for treatment of zits are Clindamycin, Erythromycin or Tetracycline (13). Again you should go and see your doctor before you take any antibiotics. They are prescription based drugs, which may only be used with prior consent and recommendation of your doctor.
Antibiotic treatment has some side effects, too. The most common adverse effects are:
Doctor advice people with heart issues not to take Erythromycin with Terfenadine, Astemisole or Cisapride as it can worsen their situation. Similarly, Tetracycline is not to be taken with antacids that contain Calcium sodium or magnesium bi carbonates as these antacids decrease absorption of tetracyclin. Also Tetracycline MUST NOT be given to kids as it may impair their growth!
Change your way of eating
The first step to your treatment program is to change your eating habits. Eating junk food might fill up your stomach but you are losing all the necessary vitamins and minerals essential for your body. Start eating fresh vegetables and fruits at least once every meal. Consider eating nuts as they are good source of minerals and also help the skin.
Same as changing your eating habit, you need to improve your water consumption as well. Drink plenty of water to clear up your skin. This helps in prevention of dead skin cells to clog pores and form pimples. Avoid the use of carbonated beverages.
Probiotics are also very beneficial for your pimple treatment. Increase the level of probiotics instead of using antibiotics. Probiotics are good bacteria that body harbors naturally. Higher levels of probiotic bacteria can be achieved by eating honey, bananas, onions and artichokes.
Vitamin D helps to clean your skin. The most efficient way for getting enough of this vitamin is to get maximum exposure to sunlight and fresh air.
Stress is one of the main causes for pimple outburst. You need to relieve yourself from stress as it disrupts your hormones out of balance.
One of the best ways to relieve stress is to do exercise and yoga as these will increase the blood flow and health of your skin.
Avoiding the use of irritating cosmetics
When it comes to cosmetics, most of them have ingredients that clog your pores, which leads to pimples formation. Use products that have natural ingredients common example is Tea tree oil.
A simple way for the treatment of zits inside nostrils with five simple steps as mentioned below:
There are no studies confirming efficiency of home remedies for treatment of pimples inside nose. However some of these remedies have anti-inflammatory properties, which may be helpful in treatment of zits (14, 15). Here are some popular home remedies for nasal pimples:
To conclude, pimples inside the nose usually follow unhealthy lifestyle and unhygienic practices to clean the nose. They may also be caused by inflammatory diseases, such as folliculitis.
What you need to do is be gentle with your nose and clean it regularly but in a proper manner. This will save you from facing such problems in the first place. In addition to nose, bumps can appear in other areas of the body, such as chin and nipples.
Pimples may also appear "inside" the body, on mucous membranes, for instance of roof of mouth or near anus.
If you want to know how to deal with pimples on roof of mouths, here is a detailed evidence based post.
Before you go, there is one important note to take into account. Pimples are usually quite harmless but sometimes they may be a sign of a serious disease. It is therefore necessary to go and see your physician and get proper medical advice before attempting any self treatment.
|Written by:||Michal Vilímovský (EN)|
|Education:||Medical student, 3rd Faculty of Medicine, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic|
See numbered references within the article.
|Published:||May 27, 2016 9:50 AM|
|Last updated:||May 27, 2016 10:00 AM|
|Next scheduled update:||May 27, 2018 10:00 AM|