ZocdocAnswersWhiteheads - What is the best way to get rid of a lot of whiteheads around the nose?

Question

Whiteheads - What is the best way to get rid of a lot of whiteheads around the nose?

I have a lot of very small whiteheads around the base of my nose. What is the best way to treat these? The skin there is so sensitive that I feel like I should use some kind of special care. Is it possible I'm worsening them by blowing my nose frequently?

Answer

Acne is one of the most common medical problems and a common reason for people to seek medical advice. The doctors who will be well qualified to discuss this issue with you in greater detail include your primary care doctor or your dermatologist. Whiteheads are a form of acne that develops when skin pores on the face become clogged closed with dead skin and other debris, allowing for the build up of skin oils, bacteria, and white blood cells. The mainstay of treatment for whiteheads therefore involves removing this skin debris. There is no real difference between treating whiteheads on the nose and on other areas of the face. Blowing your nose does not make the whiteheads worse. The basis of any treatment is a good facial soap, used daily. This could be supplemented with an exfoliating treatment, such as one containing microbeads. Many people also add a comedonolytic (debris remover), such as the many over the counter products which contain benzoyl peroxide. As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular skin concerns will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Setting up an office visit with your primary care doctor or dermatologist might be advised.

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

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.