Deviated Septum Pain: Common Causes and Cures

Sinus pain
If you are under the impression that a deviated septum only involves difficulty in breathing, think again. Along with blockage of one or both of the nostrils, nasal congestion and frequent nose bleeds, there can be excruciating deviated septum pain that can completely throw life out of gear.

What are the Major Types of Deviated Septum Pain?

  • Headache that resembles migraine; and
  • Facial pain from repeated sinus infections.

Headache – one of the worst types of deviated septum pain

Close to 30 million people, mostly women, often suffer from splitting headaches frequently. While headaches may have several causes, according to Dr. Kevin R. Smith, an otolaryngologist and facial plastic surgeon, one of the main culprits could be the deviated septum.

The worst part is that this type of deviated septum pain is often misdiagnosed as migraine. According to this doctor, approximately 10 to 15% of people who allegedly suffer from migraines actually have deviated septa.

Nasal turbinates are also important contributors to deviated septum pain. These clusters of bone and tissues are made up of large blood vessels that swell due to cold, allergies and weather changes, etc. For normal breathing, the septum must be in the center, and the turbinates of normal size.

The origin of a deviated septum pain can be traced back to a birth defect where the baby’s nose is pressed against the mother’s sacrum for hours. As the child grows, the external nose and the internal septum get misaligned and a spur can develop, which ultimately is the key to the migraine-type headaches.

How can I get relief from this type of deviated septum pain?

Septoplasty or a rectification surgery is the only way to correct a deviated septum and the problematic spur. The spur can be removed and the turbinates can be repositioned to eliminate all contact points with the septum. They are also trimmed at times, to improve breathing.

Frequent sinus problems and deviated septum pain

As incredible as it may sound, close to 37 million people develop sinus problems every year. While these problems can be caused by allergies, cold or even mold, one of the most frequent causes for developing sinusitis is a deviated septum.

What causes deviated septum pain from sinusitis?

Sinus pains are dull and throbbing pain in front of the head and the face. These are caused by inflammation of the sinuses that are air filled cavities around the nose, eyes and cheeks.

One of the main functions of these sinuses is to drain the accumulated mucus down the nasal cavity. In case of deviated septum, this drainage is severely impaired and the mucus accumulation turns into a breeding ground for bacterial infections. You are then a victim of sinusitis and subsequent deviated septum pain.

What is the treatment approach sinusitis caused by deviated septum?

The best way to get rid of such types of deviated septum pain is to treat the underlying sinus inflammation and the deviated septum. For temporary relief, the doctor may prescribe antibiotics or corticosteroids but these can never cure a deviated septum.

Other measures for getting relief from sinusitis pain include using a humidifier, saline nasal spray, steam inhalation, etc. Chronic deviated septum pain caused by sinusitis may not respond well to medication. The doctor may recommend rhinoplasty along with septoplasty, once it has been finally diagnosed that the pain is due to deviated septum.


  1. Paul, DeWeese says

    I have pain/soreness under the nasal septum for approx one week, the septum is also painful and sore. The primary site of pain is above the front teeth and feels more like it’s in the bone. I do not have sinus or cold complaints and my teeth are in good condition, by nasal septom is severly deviated, and seldom can I breath through my nose I also have severe sleep apnea, I’m 66 yrs old, I’m also a smoker.
    What’s my problem?

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