When to See a Health Care Provider
Go to a hospital emergency room or see a health care provider immediately if:
- You cannot stop the nose from bleeding.
- The nostril or nasal septum is crooked or out of place.
- The person has clear drainage from one or both nostrils or a grapelike swelling inside the nose on the septum.
- Apply ice for pain and swelling.
- Have the person rest and keep the head elevated even when sleeping.
- The person should avoid blowing their nose.
- Give acetaminophen for pain. Do not give NSAIDs such as ibuprofen or aspirin.
- If the nose is not out of position, rest and home treatment may be all that’s needed.
- If the nose is crooked or it is difficult for the person to breathe through the nose, see a health care provider.
If you see a health care provider, the next steps depend on the particular case:
- To stop bleeding, the health care provider may pack the nostrils with gauze.
- For a simple fracture, the health care provider may straighten the nose.
- Surgery may be needed to move bone or cartilage back in place for a more complicated fracture.
Referenced on 23/05/2021
- Palo Alto Medical Foundation: “Broken nose (nasal fracture)."
- American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, and American Association of Orthodontists: “Prevent accidents first. . . But, know what to do when they do occur."
- American Academy of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery: “Nasal Fractures."
- Harvard Health Publications: “Broken Nose (Nasal Fracture)."
- Broken Nose Information from eMedicineHealth.