What Causes an Itching Nose?

Humidifiers may be used to treat dry air problems within a home.
Smells from perfume or other fumes may irritate the nose, causing itching.
Dry air and dust are common causes of itchy noses.
Irritant exposure can cause itching to the nose.
An allergic reaction may cause an itchy nose and sneezing.
Article Details
  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 11 December 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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There are many things that may cause a person to develop an itching nose but among the most common are allergies and the common cold. Some people, however, also develop an itchy nose after exposure to irritants they inhale or those that come into contact with their faces. In fact, even something as simple as dry heat in a room can cause a person to develop an itchy, irritated nose. The treatments for an itchy nose typically include allergy and cold medicines that contain antihistamines. Some people may also benefit from discontinuing the use of irritants and using a humidifier.

One of the most common causes of an itchy nose is an allergy. An individual may develop an itchy nose because he is allergic to a range of things, such as pollen and dust. Many people are also allergic to mold and animal dander. Unfortunately, some people choose to deal with the itching by rubbing their noses or even scratching, which often only makes the problem worse. In most cases, trying to avoid allergens and taking allergy medicines is more effective.

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The reason allergies cause an itching nose is because of a chemical called histamine. When a person has an allergic reaction, his body produces this chemical. It is actually this release of chemicals rather than the effects of the allergen itself that causes an individual to experience allergy symptoms, including not only an itching nose, but also itchy, watery eyes, sneezing, and sometimes coughing. For this reason, many allergy medications contain antihistamines that block action of histamine in the body.

While allergies are a major cause of an itchy nose, there are also other causes. A person may experience an itching nose when he has a cold or another type of respiratory infection, for instance. In some cases, an irritant is at the root of the problem. For example, a person’s nose may be irritated by perfume, fumes from paint, or even from the fumes of household cleaners. Sometimes face creams, soaps, and shampoos can irritate the nose and cause it to itch as well.

Even dry heat can be at the root of an itching nose or at least contribute to it. As such, some people benefit from using humidifiers during the colder months when they have to heat their homes. Humidifiers can be used to help keep the air in one room moist, but a person may also buy whole-house models if needed.

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anon951216
Post 4

Allergic reaction is too easy - there are a million possible causes. If it just pops up occasionally with no obvious cause (new laundry soap, trying a new food, etc.), my nose predictably itches before/while I'm getting a cold, or, before a pimple or red, itchy area appears near the tip of my nose.

Mainly it just takes time to run its course, but washing with soap and water, rinsing thoroughly, and rubbing it dry briefly, but vigorously, with a terry-cloth/mildly rough towel gives temporary relief. After a few times it quits itching for a while.

fify
Post 3

Not just an itchy nose, but I had an itchy face and scalp as well when I had a sking fungal infection. I had to use anti-fungal tablets and creams for weeks until the symptoms went away.

I still have no idea how I got the fungi infection. My doctor thinks that my immune system was just weak.

ysmina
Post 2

@MikeMason-- A runny nose when eating hot soup is normal, it's because of the steam.

But getting an itchy, runny nose and sneezing after smelling spices might be a sign of allergy or sensitivity. Have you ever had an allergy test? You might consider getting one.

At this point, it's probably just a sensitivity, but if you also develop swelling, redness, an itchy rash and difficulty breathing after encountering or eating spices, that's dangerous. It would mean you are severely allergic. Go to the hospital immediately if that happens.

stoneMason
Post 1

Does anyone get an itchy nose, sneezing and a runny nose when they smell spices or have hot soup?

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