What’s the deal with kids jamming stuff up their noses?

Today was one of those very rare productive days. I was feeling great about having accomplished everything that needed to be done. I’d even had time to prepare a little afternoon craft session for my almost 3 year-old twin daughters. Fueled with an “I can do it all” super-mom attitude, I fluttered around giving them all sorts of creative items like paints, plasticine (modeling dough), feathers, glitter… you name it. Create! I told them. I should have worn a flowing scarf for drama.

Within about 5 minutes one of my daughters had managed to come up with the most creative idea of all, taking a small ball of blue plasticine and putting inside of her nose. “Look Mommy” she said smiling and pointing to it in her nose. I started to panic, ran over and told her (rather loudly) not to move, I would get it out. At this point she thought it would be funny to shove it way up her nose so far that I couldn’t see it anymore.

Then, she started crying, and my other daughter joined in shrieking and then, complete chaos erupted. Where was that super-mom / art teacher now?

On the recommendation of the Dr.’s office and the provincial nurse health line, I decided to take her to the Children’s Hospital. Five hours later, they couldn’t find it and told us to come back the next day to see a specialist. Back the next day, my poor little thing endured a long wire-like camera scope up both of her nostrils. But, it wasn’t there, the little blue ball must have passed into her throat and she swallowed it, they told me. My daughter was fine, she was in good spirits, especially since she got a special treat for all of her troubles.

Relieved but more exhausted and frustrated, I drove home from the hospital thinking over the events of the past two days. Why did it seem like every time I started feeling like I was in control of things, something had to go wrong for the universe to prove that I wasn’t. So, I started beating myself up for not handling the situation correctly, what if I hadn’t panicked and just stayed calm like I was supposed to do? Should I ban all play-doh from our house forever?

After about an hour in traffic, I came to some sort of acceptance, or maybe I was just too tired to think about it anymore, who knows. Stuff just happens. We make mistakes, and we do our best in the moment. Parenting doesn’t come with a manual, though sometimes I really wish it did. What it does come with is a whole lot of funny stories that we can share, even if they are only funny to us in hindsight.



8 thoughts on “What’s the deal with kids jamming stuff up their noses?”

  1. Oh my goodness! Kids do the strangest things. My tot hasn’t reached that stage of putting things up his nose, but he does like to put everything he finds in his mouth, which I’m sure is just as bad! They will outgrow this stage, hopefully!

  2. Oh my goodness. I remember when my little sister shoved a bead up her nose. Thankfully my boys haven’t attempted anything like that – knock on wood. I do wonder though why some kids have the desire to shove something up their nose – lol! :) Thanks for sharing.

  3. I don’t want to say this in fear of jinxing us, but we haven’t dealt with anything up to the nose…yet. There have been other times for panic and worry though. Sometimes I think it would be easier if parenting did come with a manual – but then it may not be as fun! ;)

  4. I totally understand. We went through the “Oh, look, I can stick this in my nose” phase too. The drive too the hospital is so unnerving and getting it out is not much fun either. AS parents we just do the best we can.

  5. When my now 10 y/o id girls were about 2 1/2, one of the got very congested. Deciding to take her to the pediatrician, after looking in her ears, nose, and throat, he decided she had a sinus infection. one which was causing her to have severely bad breath no matter what I did. So bad it was hard to be near her. :( After finishing the prescribed medication, she was no better. After a couple more trips to the ped and a couple different meds, he finally referred us to an e.n.t. specialist. We then take her to the specialist who loos up her nose again and informs us there is something shoved so far up it required special instruments to see. Had also been there so long it was beginning to scab to the skin! Ewwww and poor thing. :( He then had to literally pull it out of her nose. I cringed feeling the pain as she screamed. We then recognized it to be stuffing out of an old chair we had received when my from my late grandmother. Talk about feeling like a bum parent. But fortunately this situation was now resolved. Baby finally got better, bad breath finally went away, and mom watched their noses like a hawk until they were old enough to know better. lol

  6. My 3 and a half year old recently stuck a pearl bead up his nose. Not so far up that you couldn’t see it but far enough up that I couldn’t fish it out easily myself. Ended up using a turkey baster to suck the darn thing far enough down that I could retrieve it with my finger while pinching the bridge of his nose closed so he wouldn’t snort it back up there!!!

    Fun times!

  7. Oh dear. I would have done the same thing – better safe than sorry.

    It reminds me of the time several months ago when my then 18-month-old stuck something up his nose for the first time – he eventually sneezed it out, but I was ready to go to the hospital. As I was telling my friends about the panic the next day, they all started laughing… at me… because I told them it was a Cherrio… they pointed out with glee that it would have dissolved on it’s own … I could have just used a small syringe to spray some water on it to speed up the process.

    Oh well – we love our kids… it’s our job to panic.

  8. Last year we had the “Bead Debacle of 2012”. Not to be confused with the “Ingested Leaded Ball Debacle of 2012” or the “Tasty Mexican Peso Debacle of 2013”. In all three cases, I was right with them when it happened. In two cases, they didn’t get them from me (they pick things up).

    I’d like to think that they’re really creative ;) Mine are playing with playdoh right now…

    Glad to hear that everything turned out okay. You’re not alone.

    Besos, Sarah
    Blogger at Journeys of The Zoo
    Finding Humour in Everyday Life

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