How Do You Know If You Have a Deviated Septum?

A deviated septum is a medical term referred to a displacement of the nasal septum (thin wall between the right nostril and left nostril) to one side. Ideally, the nasal septum separates both nostrils equally. However, in deviated septum, one nasal passage or nostril is smaller than the other side.

People with Deviated Septum

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Deviated Septum

There are no symptoms in many cases of deviated septum. In fact, there are a lot of people suffering from deviated septum who are unaware of their condition. When a person with deviated septum manifests symptoms, then that is the time that they will know that they are suffering from the said medical condition. Deviated septum can happen during child birth, it may hereditary, or it may be caused by a sudden blow or trauma to the nose.

Symptoms of Deviated Septum

Symptoms of deviated septum may only appear in severe cases, while minor cases of deviated septum usually are asymptomatic.

  • The nasal septum is obviously crooked or deviated to one side of the nostril.
  • Nasal congestion is a common symptom of deviated septum wherein nasal congestion is apparent in one nostril when suffering from colds.
  • Epistaxis or Nosebleed can also be a symptom of deviated septum since the surface of the nasal septum is more likely to dry out in people with deviated septum.
  •  Recurrent Sinus Infection in deviated septum is caused by a blockage of mucus from the sinus cavity.
  • Pain or Tenderness in the facial region. Pain is usually caused and associated with the sinus infection.
  • Headaches in deviated septum are usually caused by the recurrent sinus infection.
  • Loud breathing through the nose happens due to the blockage of the nostril where air passes through.

Physical Examination for Deviated Septum

If you want to be sure if you are suffering from deviated septum, you can schedule an appointment with your doctor for physical examination. Usually, in physical examinations for deviated septum, the doctor will ask you to lie on your back with head tilted backward. The doctor will then use a nasal speculum to help spread out your nostrils for a better view and a penlight will then be used as a light source. The doctor will then examine the structures inside your nose so that he can determine whether you have a deviated septum and if the case of your deviated septum is severe or not.