Minus/plus icon
ResourcesExplore the full ACKO experience and make the most of your plan

Home / Health Insurance / Articles / First Aid / First Aid Guide: Foreign objects in the nose

First Aid Guide: Foreign objects in the nose

Team AckoJul 28, 2023

The sensation that something is caught between the nose and throat in adults is most likely caused by the inadvertent inhalation of tiny food pieces. However, for children, the scenario may be intentional. In a normal attempt to examine their own bodies, curious young toddlers may insert small things up their nostrils. Read ahead to know first aid action for foreign objects in the nose, especially in the case of children. 




Quick action: First aid for foreign objects in the nose

If something gets stuck inside your nose, the following might help.

  • Try not to poke the object with your finger: A trapped object may not be apparent in some circumstances, and it will be quite compelling to probe it. Avoid doing so because probing will simply increase the probability of pushing the object further into the nose.

  • Try not to breathe in the object: Inhaling the object may be harmful. You should inhale through your mouth until the object is removed.

  • Blow out your nose gently: When anything is lodged between your nostrils, the best approach is to gently blow your nose. Do not blow forcefully and repeatedly. Apply gentle pressure on the unaffected nostril to close it. Following that, softly blow your nose.

  • Try removing the object using tweezers: At times, whatever is trapped in the nose is visible. If it's large enough, try removing it with tweezers. Do not force it if you feel it is getting pushed further.

  • Visit the hospital: If you've tried all of the above procedures and still feel like something is caught inside your nose, go to the hospital and consult a doctor.

Common objects that get stuck in your child’s nose

Common objects found in children's noses may include the following.

  • Tiny toys

  • Rubber pieces

  • Tissue

  • Clay pieces

  • Food particles

  • Pebbles

  • Dirt

Button batteries, which are found in watches, are especially the most dangerous. They can cause substantial nasal tube damage in very little time. Paired disc magnets, which are commonly used to secure earrings or a nose ring, can also cause tissue damage. This would usually take a few weeks.

Children frequently put these objects up their noses out of curiosity or to imitate other children. However, foreign items can enter your child's nose while they are sleeping or when they try to sniff or smell something.

Symptoms of foreign body in the nose

The following symptoms may indicate that your child has a foreign body in their nose.

  • Breathing difficulties through the affected nostril

  • The sensation of something in the nose

  • Nasal discharge that smells bad

  • Bloody nasal discharge

  • Irritability, especially in babies

  • Nose irritability or pain

  • Whistling noises while breathing

First Aid for children when an object gets stuck in their nose

Older children can tell you if something remains trapped inside their noses, but younger children cannot. In that case, you need to follow the following First Aid steps.

1. Identify the object

Once you have confirmed that your child has something caught inside their nose, try to recognise the object. Most objects are not immediately dangerous, but if it is a button battery, take your child to the hospital as soon as possible.

This is due to the fact that a button battery may cause burns as well as serious damage if left for even a few hours. If you are unable to identify the object, treat it as an emergency and take your child to the hospital.

2. Calm your child

When a child is scared, they may cry. Crying can cause sniffing. Sniffing could push the object further up their nose, posing a choking risk. When something is lodged inside the nose, it is necessary to breathe through the mouth. Hence, comfort the child and tell them to breathe from the mouth.

3. Check if the object is visible

Lie the child down and conduct a visual evaluation. Simply check to see if the thing is visible. If the object is not clear, take your child to the hospital immediately.

4. Try to remove the object

If you are able to see the object through one nostril, close the other and instruct your child to inhale through their mouth and exhale through the affected nostril. Remember to encourage them to blow gently. If this procedure does not work, avoid blowing through the nose repeatedly and take your child to a doctor instead.

5. Use tweezers

Using tweezers, try removing the object. Tweezers should only be used on larger things. If you try using tweezers on smaller things, they may be pushed further up the nose. Additionally, sticking cotton swabs or your fingers into your child's nose is not a good idea. This may also cause the object to slide further into the nose.

6. Visit the doctor

After all the above steps, if the object is still stuck inside the nose and if your child has any of the following symptoms, do not wait any longer and take your child to the hospital immediately for further inspection and treatment.

Visit your doctor in the following scenario.

  • If the child is having difficulty breathing

  • Despite applying gentle pressure to the nose, bleeding continues for more than 2 or 3 minutes

  • A foreign object cannot be easily removed from your child's nose

  • If the object is sharp, is a button battery or two paired disc magnets

  • You believe an infection has developed in the nose where the object has become lodged

In the hospital, they will have different tools to remove the object. These include tools that will help them hold or scoop out the object. They also have suction equipment that can remove the object all at once.

In order to make your child feel more at ease, the doctor may use a topical anaesthetic (spray or drops) to numb the area inside the nose. The doctor may also administer medication to help prevent nosebleeds prior to the removal surgery. To treat or prevent an infection, your child's doctor may prescribe antibiotics or nasal sprays.

Prevention tips

Explain to your child how noses work and why putting items in their nose is a bad idea. Some prevention measures may include the following.

  • Food for small children should be cut into proper sizes

  • Encourage them to avoid talking, laughing, or playing while food is in their mouth

  • Keep little objects out of your kid's reach

  • Instruct kids not to put foreign objects in their noses or other body openings

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about first aid for foreign objects in the nose.


How do you remove a foreign object from your nose?

Foreign objects can be removed by blowing out your nose gently, removing the object using tweezers, or using suction equipment to remove the object at once.

What do you do if a child has an object in his nose?

Take your child to the doctor if you suspect they have an object in their nose. If the object includes chemicals (such as a button battery), you should take it to a nearby hospital for evaluation.

Should certain food items be avoided for children?

Children under the age of three should not be given food items such as hot dogs, whole grapes, almonds, popcorn, or hard candy without proper monitoring.


Disclaimer: The content on this page is generic and shared only for informational and explanatory purposes. Please consult a doctor before making any health-related decisions.


Want to post any comments?


Affordable Health Insurance for You & Your Family starting @ ₹20/day*

✅ 100% Room Rent Covered* ✅ Zero deductions at claims ✅ 7100+ Cashless Hospitals

quote icon

Check health insurance

quote icon