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Scabs in Nose Causes, Treatment, Remedy, Pictures, Wont go Away

Can scabs in the nose cause cancer? How do scabs in nose arise and how do you treat scabs from your nose? Get insights on causes, treatment and home remedy.

What causes Scabs in Nose?

scabs in nose

Scabs in the nose are usually dried mucus, hair, flakes of skin and trapped dirt particles. They are mostly white and yellow. Sometime though nose scabs may be red in situation where there is bleeding. One can have scabbing on one nostril or both of them.

Some people may not feel any pain on a scab but there cases where the scabs get painful. Even when they are not painful scabs in the nose can cause discomfort, especially if they are large and one cannot help but be aware of them. Below are 11 probable causes of scabby nose as explained in the book, Diseases of the Sinuses: Anatomy of the Nose and Paranasal Sinuses by Dr. Arquez Samuel.

  1. Trauma

Trauma in this case means any hard, repeated, pulling, rubbing, blowing, scratching or hitting the nose. All this can bring about nasal scabs.
A good example of trauma to the nose causing scabs is a nose picking habit. The constant scratching can break the delicate skin inside the nose, causing scabs to form.
Chronic nose picking can be very damaging to the inside of the nose as it sets off a vicious cycle. You pick at a scab, leave wound exposed, wound forms scab, and you pick at scab again and it goes on and on.
Scabs also form inside the nostril around a nose piercing. If it is just a few light brownish scabs on a relatively fresh piercing, this is no reason to worry. Those could be formed by the drying of the clear liquid that drains from a fresh non infected nose piercing.

  1. Nasal infection 

Some scabs in nostrils may result from certain infections associated with the respiratory tract of humans. These are:

a). Sinus infection or Sinusitis

An example of such includes sinus infections. Typically, infection of the sinus (sinusitis) is accompanied by inflammation, swelling of the tissues lining the sinuses. Due to this fact, individuals tend to scratch or pick to relieve pain – causing them to start bleeding.

According to Dr. Arquez Samuel in his Book, a sinus infection whose symptoms include draining mucous may be an indication that the sinuses are congested.  He further explains that various conditions can cause sinus blockage such as common cold, allergic rhinitis (swelling of the lining of the nose) or a deviated septum. Therefore, what you need to do is seek medical help for diagnosis of acute or chronic sinusitis.

b). Nostril Scabs after cold sore infection

Cold sores are a viral infection. At its onset, cold sores are usually presented in form of fluid-filled sores in nostrils but can also get to the outside and cause more damage even near to the mouth. When they dry up they become crusty which could be painful to touch.

  1. Allergic and non-allergic rhinitis

Rhinitis is not an allergy but a medical term to describe a set of long-lasting symptoms that resemble an allergic reaction. According to Dr. Arquez Samuel in his book, some of the symptoms for both kinds of rhinitis include:

  • Sinusitis – swelling of the sinus tissues,
  • Loss of smell,
  • Nasal dryness and nosebleed which are also a side effect of drug use.

Non-allergic rhinitis causes inflammation of the inside of the nose. The nasal cavity becomes swollen resulting in a blocked or a runny nose. Both rhinitis causes scabbing although it is non-allergic, it rarely contributes.

If you may want to know the cause, here are a few:

  • Infections – viral, bacterial and fungal as well,
  • Hormonal imbalance,
  • Environmental triggers such as smoke, perfume, smog, alcohol, spicy foods, changes in weather (temp. drop) etc.
  1. Sinus surgery – rhinoplasty or septoplasty

Even though rhinoplasty surgery focuses on correcting and shaping deformed septum, this procedure could lead to wounds. Normally, the damage is caused after undergoing these kinds of operations.

Initially, small or little tiny scabs will form on or around your affected part of the nose including the nasal bridge. Now, as the wounds heal, large scabs may result if the wounds are big.

A very important thing to observe is never to treat them without a doctor’s approval. Why? Their condition may worsen to an extent that you get a stuffy or congested nose which adds up to breathing woes or difficulties.

  1. Systemic lupus erythematosus

Systemic lupus erythematosus is abbreviated as (SLE). It is also referred to as lupus. It is a type of autoimmune disorder in which the immune system of our body is triggered and acts to damage our own body. It is also known as a type of connective tissue disorder.

There are many different symptoms of SLE or lupus, like rash on the face, arthritis or painful swollen joints and oral ulcers. Sores can also form inside nose in lupus. These are referred with the name lupus nose sores.

  1. Herpes Simplex

There are 2 types of Herpes simplex viruses, Herpes simplex type 1 or Herpes labialis, and Herpes simplex type 2 or Herpes Genitalis. Both of them cause fluid-filled blisters or sores, but in different areas of the body.

Herpes Simplex type 1 or Herpes labialis causes sores in nose and around the mouth. These sores are also called cold sores. They are filled with fluid. These sores are very painful. Eventually, in a span of 7 to 10 days, these sores or blisters break, release fluid, from crusts and then heal.

  1. Impetigo

Impetigo is a bacterial infection of the skin caused by bacteria called Staphylococcus aureus. This infection is very common in kids of school going age. This infection is contagious and kids with such infection need to be kept at home for 2 days after starting treatment or until the scabs crust and heal.

Staphylococcus aureus bacteria can live on our skin without causing any damage or disease. Now you might be wondering how then is it possible for these bacteria to cause impetigo.

Staphylococcus bacteria does not enter the skin if the skin is intact without any damage. If there is any damage or breach in the intact skin, it will act as a port of entry for the staphylococcus bacteria. Many people have the habit of picking their nose. Some people also insert objects into their nose. These habits can damage the nasal skin and facilitate the entry of the bacteria.

The skin inside the nose can also be damaged due to harsh weather conditions like extremely cold or dry and hot weather. This also enables the easy entry of bacteria which leads to Impetigo. As Impetigo is common amongst the school going kids, it is also known as school sores.

There is a formation of boils with fluid inside them in and around the nose. Then the boils break and release fluid. This can lead to the formation of ulcers with a honey-colored crust over them. Impetigo is identified with honey-colored crusting mainly.

  1. Nasal passages dryness

One of the common reasons for the occurrence of nasal scabs is when it dries out. Dryness in your nasal passage or cavity may be brought about by extremely dry or hot weather, leading to a dehydrated nasal orifice.

When the scabs are from dry nostrils then a massive erosion of the mucous from the membrane lining the septum of your nostrils and keeping it hydrated as well. They are normally small and few in number.

Symptoms include a burning sensation, especially when breathing out. However, a statistical figure estimates a more frequent occurrence in young adults.

  1. Nose picking

This involves scratching the inside of the nostrils (with fingers or some other kind of tools or items, etc.). Now, whether you do pick to clear it, the negative side of it is that more sores and scars are likely to get under.

And if you make it a habit, then large wounds may begin to form causing a lot of discomforts hence, you may end up with painful and crusty scabs in nose.

  1. HIV/AIDs

Sinusitis and rhinitis can both be as a result of HIV infections. These two conditions are well known to cause nasal sores and lesions that don’t heal quickly.

With these conditions, you may also experience persistent post-nasal drip, headaches and discomfort behind the eyes. Eye infections may also accompany the scabs within the nose.

  1. Nose bleeding

Bloody scabs in the nose are a common result of nose bleeding. Bleeding is common in children, but it also occurs in adults. When you experience brown crusts inside your nose, there could be mild bleeding. Blood clots, when removed, is a sign of minor bleeding from the cracked nasal lining. This usually happens when your nose is dry or during dry seasons such as winter. Picking is also a major cause of bleeding.

In order to relieve bloody scabs in the nose, the doctor might prescribe topical antiseptics (e.g. Naseptin) and/or a full course of antibiotics.

However, if the problem of bloody scabbing does not go away with humidification and change of climate, you should see a doctor for treatment.

Scabs in Nose that won’t go away

The scab in the nose normally goes away with the simple measures such as home remedies. But what with scabs that won’t go away or actually gets worse even with all these measures?

So, what causes them and why can’t they go away even after taking medication? Here are some among other possible causes of scabs in the nose that won’t go away.

  1. Nose cancer

Basically, the presence of hard crusty bumps in your nose may be associated with cancer. Nasal cancer may form painless lesions which may scab and never go away. The lesion will tend to grow and may be painful if agitated.

  1. Addiction to Certain Drugs

The second cause or why you have this issue that constantly keeps haunting you is overuse of drugs or abuse of drugs. An example of these drugs includes cocaine hence this common phrase scabs in the nose after coke.

  1. Persistent nose picking

For those with this habit, it is possible for one to end up with constant scabbing in nostrils, a problem that will keep on coming and going without healing easily.

  1. Staph infection

If untreated, staph infection can lead to scabbing in the nose that won’t go away easily.

Scabs in Nose pictures

Does Scabs in Nose cause cancer

Basically, the presence of hard crusty bumps in your nose may be associated with cancer. Nasal cancer may form painless lesions which may scab and never go away. The lesion will tend to grow and may be painful if agitated.

There are many different types of cancer that can affect the nasal cavity and sinuses. The outlook varies, depending on the specific type you have.

Overall, around 1 in every 3 or 4 people with nasal and sinus cancer will live for at least 5 years after diagnosis. But this can vary, depending on things such as exactly where the cancer is located and how far it’s spread before being diagnosed and treated.

Scabs in Nose Treatment and Home Remedies

  1. Nasal Cauterization

According to [] Cauterization methods include burning the affected area with acid, hot metal, or lasers. Naturally, such procedures are obviously quite painful. However, some physicians may use liquid nitrogen to help relieve pain during the actual procedure. Cauterization should be useful in dealing with cancerous scabs as well as viral ones. Do they heal? Due to lack of an exact cure for most viral infections, this procedure stimulates the growth of newer cells that replace the area surrounded by the scabs. You are requested to consult your doctor on what actually happens in cauterization before you can go for it.

  1. Topical Cures

As a treatment option to heal nose scabs, most topical medicines and sprays are good for most infections for instance bacteria or allergens.

a). Antibiotic Ointments

One of a topical cure is the use of antibiotic ointments (for killing bacteria). Some of the antibiotic drugs include intra-Nasal Mupirocin which is effective in eliminating nasal scabs caused by a strain of resistant MRSA bacteria or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

According to Healthtap Journal, certain topical treatments must not be used within your nose for example triple antibiotic ointment. Another critical aspect to know is that overuse of some nasal decongestant sprays can lead to Rhinitis.

b). Nasal solutions and sprays

Secondly, we have these solutions available at various drugstores in your residence. These topical treatments in form of sprays act by constricting blood vessels that carry blood to the nasal area.

They no doubt help you tackle sinus infections and therefore effective in getting rid of symptoms such as nasal congestion after colds, allergies or hay fever. Examples of such include Pseudoephedrine, GeloSitin Nasal Care Relief nasal spray for an irritated, painful dry nose.

Ask your healthcare provider for the right nasal sprays depending on general current health conditions of your body, but saline-only sprays are considered more effective even for women who are pregnant. Moreover, when you are breastfeeding avoid Pseudoephedrine for it may have negative results on a nursing baby.

c). Topical Antiseptics

Your doctor or surgeon will prescribe antiseptics to help fight bacterial infection especially after you have undergone a sinus surgery.

Home Remedies for Nasal Scabs

Here are some best home remedies that help you to get relief from the scabs in the nose. Follow them regularly till you get rid of the problem.

Warm Compress

A warm compress will give relief from the discomfort caused by scabs in the nose. Simply soak a soft towel in hot water and squeeze it to remove excess water. Dab the cloth on the affected areas of the nose as a compress. Press it gently and let it sit for few minutes. After the cloth gets cooled, remove it and repeat the same regularly till you get rid of the problem.

Cold Compress

If you’re suffering from nasal scabs that accompanied with itching, sharp pains and swelling then ice/cold compress will be your best remedy. For this, you have to soak a clean cloth in cold water or ice cubes for 3 minutes. Squeeze out the cloth and place it on the affected area.

Or you can tie a handkerchief with some ice cubes and apply it on the swollen nose. This cold compress will calm down the affected area, reduces the pain and speed up the healing process.


Honey has wound healing and antiseptic property which helps to heal the scabs in nose faster. Apply a small amount of raw honey on the scabs and let it sit for few minutes till you get relief from scabs.

Epsom salt

Epsom salt has a calming property that prevents the pain and tenderness which are associated with scabs. Soak your nasal scabs in water for a couple of minutes and then add some Epsom salt in this water. Stir well and soak the scab affected nose areas in this water. This soaking will tighten the scab and relieves your scabs.


You have to include some essential vitamins like A, C & D in your diet while suffering from Scabs. Vitamins A & D are helpful in fighting against the bacterial infection and helps you in treating the soreness caused by these scabs inside the nose. Also, you can simply apply any topical ointments which have this A & D by dabbing it on the scab using a q-tip.

Vitamin C is enriched with antioxidants (that improve the immune system) and anti-inflammatory (eliminates the pain and swelling). So, include vitamin C in your diet like citrus fruits to clear this problem.

Saline Solution

The saline solution will clear away the mucus and other impurities causing sinusitis and nasal scabs. Add 1 teaspoon of salt in 1/2 cup of water. Stir well and pour this mix in a neti pot. Tilt your head and open your mouth and use this pot to rinse your nasal passage by pouring this water in one nostril and it comes out from another nostril. You can also use saline sprays which help to constrict the blood vessels carrying blood to the nasal area.

Baking Soda

Baking soda exhibits antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties that help you to clear any infections causing scabs and its pain. Mix some baking soda with a little water to make a fine paste. Apply this paste on the scabs. Wait for few minutes to dry and wash the area with water. Do the application regularly until you get complete relief from scabs in nose.

 Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) encourages the cell growth and also helps to maintain proper pH balance of the skin. Mix 1 – 2 teaspoons of organic ACV in a bowl of water and stir well. Then dip a cotton ball in this ACV water and dab it on the scabs. Wait for 20 – 25 minutes and rinse this ACV water applied areas with water. Or you can also use tea tree oil instead of ACV.


The antimicrobial and antiseptic properties of garlic will help to heal these nasal scabs in most cases. All you need is to boil few cloves of crushed garlic in water for few minutes and apply this water on the affected skin areas when once it gets cooled (or) simply rinse this affected area with this water.

Further References:

  1. What’s Causing Scabs in My Nose?com
  2. Causes and treatments for nose scabs:

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