‘Skier’s nose’ explained: Why your nostrils run when it’s cold outside

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Ever wondered why your nose runs when it’s cold? It’s extremely common – it happens to about 50-90 per cent of people.

It’s called ‘cold-induced rhinitis’ or ‘skier’s nose’. People with asthma, eczema and hay fever seem to experience it more.

Writing for The Conversation, David King, senior lecturer at The University of Queensland, explains why. 

He says the low temperature triggers an automatic reaction in your nose to make the air you breathe in warm and wet so that when it gets to your lungs it does not irritate the cells.

‘When inhaling air through the nose at subfreezing temperatures, the air in the back of the nose is usually about 26°C, but can be as high as 30°C,’ he explained.

2a3bcb9ac2d4b514e7464cf96085a524 'Skier's nose' explained: Why your nostrils run when it's cold outside

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