Diseases General Health Skin Conditions
Home » Ear, Nose and Throat » Dry Nostrils

Dry Nostrils

Having dry nostrils is not a pleasant sensation, especially if you are going out in the cold. No one likes to have chapped lips and this is the same with dry nostrils. When one has dry nostrils, this means that the entire tissue area of the nasal passages is not moisturized. There are many reasons that lead to the appearance of such problems and it is important to correctly identify the cause, so as to treat the condition. A lot of discomfort can be caused by trying to wipe your nose when the nostrils are dry, this discomfort being made even worse by the cold weather.

The level of dryness can range from mild to severe, forcing people to seek the advice of specialized personnel. Sometimes, the condition can be so severe that one simply dreads going outside. Apart from the treatment, there are home remedies and specific measures that a person can consider for improvement. Also, there are certain measures that can be taken in order to prevent dry nostrils in the future. In the following paragraphs, you will find information about the symptoms accompanying dry nostrils, the causes that lead to such problems and available treatment choices.

Symptoms of Dry Nostrils

These are the most common symptoms of dry nostrils:

  • The outside part of the nostrils is dry, being red and sometimes inflamed
  • The person might exhibit a burning sensation and tenderness to the touch
  • The inside mucosa is also dry
  • Sometimes fissures form, as the skin is dry and cracked, leading to a small amount of blood coming from the nose
  • If the inside mucosa is excessively dry, then the sense of smell might be impaired
  • Breathing can become painful, especially if the temperatures outside are really low
  • Reduced quantities of mucus will cause the nostrils to become even more dried on the inside
  • Crusts might form where the cracked skin has healed, affecting breathing or causing the sensation of having something inside the nose
  • The dry inside mucosa generates an increased risk for bacterial infections

What are the Causes of Dry Nostrils?

These are the most common causes that can lead to dry nostrils:

  • Medication side-effect
    • Antihistamines are well known for causing the nostrils to become dry, this being one of the side-effects of this medication
      • Most often encountered in persons who use antihistamine sprays, as these contain atropine (dries out the nasal mucosa)
  • Environment
    • Indoor heating during the winter season
    • Reduced humidity – outside or inside
  • Sjögren’s syndrome
    • Chronic autoimmune disorder
    • The exocrine glands are attacked by the immune system, leading to dryness of the nasal mucosa, among other modifications
  • Keratoconjunctivitis sicca
    • Dry eye syndrome
    • Dryness of the eye conjunctiva
    • Dry nostrils appear as additional modifications, adding to the discomfort already caused by the dry eyes
  • Bad habits
    • Wiping the nose too frequently or aggressively
    • Picking the nose
    • Sticking the finger into the nose
    • Using paper tissues to wipe the nose (inside and out – irritates the mucosa, causing to become dry)
  • Not drinking enough water
    • The interior membranes of the body need water in order to remain moist
    • A reduced water intake leads to dehydration, which, in its own turn, leads to dry nostrils
  • Other causes
    • Frequent usage of nasal decongestants – these can actually lead in time to dryness of the interior membranes, causing dependency at the same time
    • Extreme heat (climate)
      • Functions on the same principle as indoor heating during the winter, leading to dry nostrils
    • Air conditioning
      • The air coming from the device is not natural and moist, causing the nostrils to become dry
    • Frequent visits to the sauna (dry sauna, no steam).


These are the most recommended measures and treatment choices for dry nostrils:

  • Stop using medication that causes the nostrils to become dry; request the doctor for an alternative that does not have this side-effect
  • Drink more water, to keep the body hydrated and prevent the dryness of the nasal mucosa
  • Moisturize the nasal passages
    • Nasal saline spray
      • No addiction, as it contains only natural ingredients
      • Can be used as frequent as one desires, hydrating the inside membranes of the nose
  • Moisturize the air in the room
    • Room humidifier/vaporizer
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
    • Pain relieving properties
    • Reduce associated inflammation
    • Recommended: acetaminophen, ibuprofen
  • Treatment for underlying conditions
    • Sjögren’s syndrome
      • Immunosuppressant medication
    • Keratoconjunctivitis sicca
      • Artificial tears

In conclusion, dry nostrils can be made better if you choose the follow the advice and treatment choices recommended above. Prevent this condition by drinking lots of water, keeping the air inside your rooms moisturized and eating healthy. Make sure that you also use a moisturizing lotion made from natural ingredients, for the outside part of the nostrils. This will help the cracked skin heal faster and it will reduce the chance of secondary bacterial infections.

Dry Nostrils
4.8 (96.67%) 54 votes

Leave a Reply

© 2011-2017 MDDK.com - Medical Tips and Advice. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy
The health information provided on this web site is for educational purposes only and is not to be used as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.