Font Size

Foreign Body in the Nose

Foreign Body in the Nose Overview

The nose is a surprisingly deep space that extends directly back into the face. A relatively small portion of the nasal cavity is visible by looking into the tip of the nose. In the back of the nose, the space turns downward and connects to the back of the mouth.

Only the imagination limits the objects and circumstances that result in things getting stuck inside of the nose.

  • Common objects found in noses include food material, tissue paper, beads, toys, and rocks.
  • Most cases of foreign bodies in the nose and nasal cavity are not serious and occur in toddlers and children from 1-8 years of age. Children develop the ability to pick up objects at about the age of 9 months, so foreign objects in the nose are much less common in children 9 months of age or less.
  • An object that is simply stuck in the nose and not causing other symptoms can usually wait until morning or the following day for removal. The object does, however, have to be completely removed quickly and without discomfort and danger.

In addition, an object stuck in the nose has the potential to dislodge and travel into the mouth where there is the danger of swallowing it, or even worse, inhaling it into the lungs, which may block airflow.

The subject of this article is foreign objects in the nose and it is not intended to cover toxic chemical inhalants toxins that injure the nasal cavity, trauma to the nose, or foreign bodies traveling through the nasal cavity into the lungs.

Foreign Body in the Nose Causes

Patient Comments
  • The vast majority of foreign bodies are placed in the nose voluntarily for an endless variety of reasons. When questioning children about this possibility, it is important to approach them in a nonjudgmental manner. Otherwise, the adult runs an increased risk that the child will deny having put something in their nose to avoid punishment. This could easily result in a delay of its discovery and increase the risk of complications.
  • Trauma is another common cause for items to get shoved inside the nose. When a person falls or gets struck in the face, it is important to consider the possibility that an object may be stuck in the nose and is completely out of view.

Must Read Articles Related to Foreign Body, Nose

Bad Breath (Halitosis)
Bad Breath (Halitosis) Bad breath (halitosis) can be caused by a variety of things including diet, medication, poor oral hygiene, and diseases or conditions such as diabetes, GERD, la...learn more >>
Choking Choking is a blockage of the upper learn more >>
Nosebleed (Epistaxis)
Nosebleeds Nosebleeds are categorized based on where they originate. Anterior nosebleeds originate from the front of the nose, and posterior nosebleeds originate from the ...learn more >>

Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Foreign Body in the Nose:

Foreign in the Nose - Experience

Please share your or someone you knows experience with a foreign object in the nose.

Foreign in the Nose - Cause

What object did you or someone you know became lodged in the nose?

Foreign in the Nose - Self Care at Home

How were you able to remove the object from yours, or someone else's nose?

Foreign in the Nose - Medical Treatment

What was the medical treatment for your case of a foreign object in the nose?

Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Foreign Body Removal, Nose »

Nasal foreign bodies that require removal are relatively common among pediatric patients and may also be seen in adult patients, most often those with psychiatric disease or developmental delay.

Read More on Medscape Reference »

Medical Dictionary