ZocdocAnswersDoes the size and shape of your nose have anything to do with how well you can breathe?

Question

Does the size and shape of your nose have anything to do with how well you can breathe?

I was wondering this because I have a rather small nose and I seem to have a lot of issues with breathing especially at night. I was wondering if the size and shape of someone's nose has anything to with the way that they breathe.

Answer

Yes. Many people have noses with a thin profile that does not allow air to flow through them adequately. This is often caused by trauma when people are very young, with the trauma often being so insignificant or long ago that it is not remembered. Others will just have a family tendency towards thin noses or other nasal variations. The key is that there needs to be room for the air to flow through. If you are feeling that your nasal congestion and difficulty breathing through your nose are related to the shape or size of your nose, one thing that you can do to check this is to use the "breathe right" strips that are available over the counter. This are like a band-aid that crosses the bridge of your nose and suspends the nasal sidewalls so that there is more room for air to travel through. If you feel that these help your symptoms, then it is possible that the anatomy of your nose is contributing to your symptoms. Wearing these aids indefinitely is one possible solution, but others will look into some of the surgical options that effectively do the same thing and are more aesthetically pleasing. Please speak to your doctor.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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