Can Blowing Your Nose Constantly, Touching and Pushing It Stretch Your Nostrils?

I had a tough cold lately and I was constantly blowing my nose and touching-pushing it just to make sure it was clear.I was also cleaning the inside of my nose with cotton sticks because it would always get stuffy and I couldnt breath well. Could these constant actions stretch a bit my nose?Because when I look myself in the mirror now, I think that my nose its just a little bit biger than before. Please help me,i cant help myself.

Doctor Answers 8

Touching Nose Does Not Stretch Nostrils

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The amount of force that comes from blowing, touching, or pushing your nose is insufficient to change the nasal configuration or “stretch” the nostrils. However, I would advise to always try to be as gentle as possible when blowing or touching your nose. The nose is a sensitive organ and inner tissue may rip if too much force is applied.

New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

Blowing your nose will not stretch your nostrils.

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Manipulating your nose to manage the symptoms of a cold will not change the size of your nostrils.  You can change the shape by placing long term continuous force, but you have to be a member of a tribe to do that.

Stretching Your Nostrils by Touching & Blowing Your Nose

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Touching & blowing your nose during a cold will have no effect on the long term size or appearance of your nostrils. Some African tribes put objects in their lips and ears to dilate those structures but it takes many years of constant pressure to achieve that enlargement. You have nothing to worry about.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

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Although it is not possible to stretch your nostrils or the skin of your nose after just a few days with a bad cold etc. it is possible to stretch skin over longer periods of time.  This is exactly what people do when they gage their ears etc.

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Nostrils don't permanently increase in size from blowing or touching nose

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Your prodding and poking inside your nose and blowing your nose will not stretch your nostrils. What you may seeing is some inflammation/swelling related to your cold.

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Stretching the nose

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It is highly unlikely that constantly touching or rubbing your nose can cause it to stretch.  Be careful placing sticks in your nose, because if you are not careful it can cause bleeding or septal injuries.

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Cannot Change the Shape Of Your Nose So Fast

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While the shape of your nose can stretch with constant touching and pushing over time, it is very unlikely that this happened in the time of your cold. It would take much longer to do — we're talking much longer than a couple of days and there would have to be constant pressure, even through the night. Your nose may be a little swollen from constantly touching it, but this will subside and return to normal once you've stopped touching your nose so much.

Can you stretch your nose?

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It would be very unusual to be able to stretch your nose in just a few days with a bad cold, even with aggressive nasal blowing.  It might be a bit swollen from the local trauma though.  If so, it should go back to normal.

 It sounds like you should see a local doc to get treated for the cold or at least try some over the counter remedies.  Consider something with a decongestant and take it according to the directions.

Michael Bowman, MD
Roanoke Facial Plastic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.