Attention CHOP clinicians: patient education should be printed and assigned via EPIC's Teaching Library.
Health Encyclopedia
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z A-Z Listings

How to Care for Your Child After a Nose Injury

Injuries to the nose — things like cuts, scrapes, and bumps — usually don't cause lasting problems. Kids can have pain, bruising, and a little swelling in the injured area. Over the next few days, the swelling and bruising may spread to the area around the eyes. The health care provider examined your child's nose carefully and didn't find a serious problem. Here's how to care for your child at home.

KidsHealth Image

KidsHealth Image

  • Follow your health care provider's directions for giving pain medicine such as acetaminophen (Tylenol® or a store brand) or ibuprofen (Motrin®, Advil®, or a store brand). 

  • To help with swelling:

    • Have your child sleep with their head raised.

    • Put an ice pack wrapped in a thin towel on the nose for 10–15 minutes a few times a day.

  • Don't let your child pick or blow their nose.

  • If a nosebleed happens, have your child sit up and tilt their head slightly forward. Gently squeeze the sides of the nostrils (soft part of the nose) together using the index finger and thumb and hold it constantly for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, check to see if the bleeding has stopped. If not, pinch the soft parts of the nose again for 10 minutes.

  • Go to any follow-up care visits as instructed by your health care provider.

KidsHealth Image

Your child:

  • has new or worse pain or swelling of the nose or around the nose

  • gets a fever

  • gets more than one nosebleed

  • has more tears coming from one or both eyes than before the injury

KidsHealth Image

Your child:

  • starts having trouble breathing through the nose or it gets worse

  • has a lump inside the nose that you can see

  • has clear drainage from the nose

  • has a nosebleed that doesn't stop after two or three tries of applying pressure for 10 minutes each

KidsHealth Image

How do I know my child's nose isn't broken? Health care providers usually can tell if a child's nose is broken by asking questions and doing an exam. If it's not clear if the nose is broken, they might do X-rays or other imaging studies, but these aren't usually needed for a mild nose injury.

Will my child's nose look different from the nose injury? Most mild nose injuries don't change the shape of the nose. When the swelling goes away completely, your child's nose will likely look the same as before the injury.

Powered by StayWell