A nasal blockage is a partial or complete blockage of the nasal cavity, which means that the breathing airway is obstructed. A nasal blockage can be uncomfortable as it forces you to breathe through your mouth, which can make daily functions such as eating, exercising, or sleeping more difficult or tedious.
Most nasal blockages are temporary and have varying causes, whereas some are more serious and require medical intervention.
Causes of Nasal Blockages
There are different types of nasal blockages and obstructions, which include:
- Deviated nasal septums- Nasal septums are a wall-like structure that divides the nostrils inside your nose, a deviated septum means that this wall is crooked. This isn’t a rare condition at all, it’s estimated that 80% of people have a deviated septum to a certain degree.
- Allergies– Having an allergic reaction to an irritant such as animal fur or pollen can cause swelling and inflammation to the turbinates, which are bony structures in the cavity, this can cause a blockage.
- Choanal atresia- A congenital defect which causes you to have excess tissue in your nasal airway, this causes a partial or full blockage.
- Nasal polyps- A polyp is a tissue growth inside your nose lining, it can cause a partial or complete blockage.
- Sinusitis- This is caused by a bacterial infection in the nasal passages, which can cause a blockage.
Symptoms of Nasal Blockages
The symptoms which are commonly associated with nasal blockages are as follows:
- Postnatal discharge, also known as a runny nose.
- Your eyes twitching or watering.
- Sneezing more than usual without an irritant or cold.
- Facial pain.
- An inability to smell.
- Difficulty breathing through one or both of your nostrils.
- Having trouble blowing/clearing your nose.
- A stuffy or full feeling in your nose, sinuses, or head.
Treatments for Nasal Blockages
If you have a nasal blockage or suspect that you have one of the conditions which can cause a nasal blockage, then there are multiple treatment options available to you.
You can have a private ENT consultation, an ENT specialist is an ear, nose, and throat consultant who can diagnose problems and conditions which seem like common complaints.
You can also have a private nasal Endoscopy, which allows a detailed examination of the sinus cavities using an endoscope.
Lastly, there is non-surgical Rhinoplasty, which is a reshaping treatment that uses dermal filler as an alternative to surgery and can treat a crooked nasal septum.