A broken nose is a crack or break of the nasal bones. In the majority of broken nose cases, there is also damage to nearby nasal cartilage. Due to its prominent and unprotected position on the face, the nose is vulnerable to impact from accidents and violence. It is unknown how many people break their noses because many people with mild fractures never seek medical treatment.
Symptoms Of A Broken Nose
The signs and symptoms of a fractured nose typically develop immediately. Some occurrences of broken noses may not show signs for up to three days. The symptoms of a fractured nose include the following:
Tenderness or pain
Bleeding from nose
Swelling of nose
Bruising around the eyes
Misshapen or crooked nose
Mucus discharge from the nose
Causes Of A Broken Nose
Broken noses are responsible for about 40% of all facial fractures. The nose is bone and cartilage, and when hit with force, the bones may fracture or crack. The result is a broken nose. There are multiple causes for a fractured nose, including sports injuries, fights, car accidents, and falls. Sometimes, the nose can break from not taking required precautions like weightlifting without a spotter, not using a seat belt in the car, and not using a helmet for protection during sports.
Immediate Action To Take
If you believe that you might have a broken nose, there are three steps you can take immediately to help your broken nose. The actions to consider if you have a nasal injury include:
Stop the bleeding. Sit up and lean forward. Squeeze the soft area of the nose with thumb and index finger and hold tightly for 5 minutes. If the bleeding does not stop, pinch again for ten minutes.
Ease the pain. Take over-the-counter pain medicine as directed on the package.
Reduce the swelling. Set an ice pack on the nose for 10 minutes, then remove for 10 minutes. Try this for at least four times per day.
If the symptoms do not abate, you have difficulty breathing, or a fever after a few days, contact a healthcare professional.
If the fracture does not result in a crooked or otherwise deformed nose, it may not require medical treatment. A healthcare professional can recommend self-care methods like icepacks and over-the-counter medications for pain control. If the break is more involved than just a simple fracture, a closed reduction may be needed. The procedure involves the use of various instruments to realign the nose. Surgery will be required if the nose needs to be realigned and reshaped. A healthcare professional can perform a rhinoplasty to reshape the nose.
There are measures you can take to avert a broken nose. Always wear your seat belt! Use the suggested safety equipment like helmets and pads when playing contact sports. Also be sure to wear a helmet during bicycle or motorcycle rides. The nose resides in a vulnerable position on the face, so be sure to protect your face whenever possible. Be careful out there when you are having fun!