Cold or allergy season leaves many of us with a trademark symptom, right in the middle of our faces: dry nose. While a dry nose is uncomfortable, many remedies for treating a dry nose can be purchased with a single trip to your neighborhood drugstore, or with things you already have in your home. Here are five effective home remedies.
Use your fingers to apply a small dab of petroleum jelly to the lining inside of your nose. Not only is it good for keeping your nose moisturized, it’s also safely handled by your stomach in small amounts. Lip balm works too. Try not to use this method too frequently or for prolonged periods, and avoid applying too much at a time. In rare cases it can lead to lung problems.
Here’s a tip: Don’t point it at furniture because the excess moisture can promote mold growth and damage wooden surfaces.
Nasal sprays can be used to wet the nasal passages. You can purchase over-the-counter nasal sprays at your local pharmacy. Saline nasal sprays can help moisturize your nose while also cleaning out any dust, dirt, pollen, and congestion.
Moisten a facial tissue with water using a spray bottle, and wipe along the lining of your nostrils. This can help prevent drying and irritation. You can also use baby wipes, which are designed for cleaning sensitive areas without causing over-drying.
A common home facial treatment, steam can also help relieve a dry nose. You can even hang your head over a sink of hot water, but the effects of steam won’t last for long.
Besides using moisture in the air, make sure you help your body from the inside by staying hydrated. Drinking plenty of fluids like water or tea — especially if you have a dry nose during a cold — can help moisturize your nose from the inside out.
The most common cause of dry nose is blowing your nose too often, whether that’s because of a cold or allergies. Dry nose is also common among people who live in areas with dry weather and who smoke tobacco or marijuana.
Chronic dry nose can also be caused by certain medical conditions, such as Sjogren’s syndrome. Other causes of dry nose include infection, nutritional deficiencies, and chronic atrophic rhinitis, which is nasal inflammation caused by having too little nasal mucus.
Dry nose is also a common symptom of certain medications, like antihistamines and decongestants used for the common cold or allergies.
Outside of being uncomfortable and painful, a case of dry nose is rarely serious. The linings of your nose and the crease underneath are sensitive. Excess dryness and irritation can cause the skin to crack and bleed.
However, if you have dry nose for more than 10 days or experience signs of infection — fever, discharge, bloody noses that won’t stop, and weakness — you should contact your doctor immediately.