My Nose Woes

I’m experiencing another extraintestinal manifestation of my Crohn’s disease. Or as we call it in my house…”extraterrestrial”, ha ha ha! Meaning, my disease is essentially inflaming other parts of my body, outside the gastro system.

In this case it is the skin on my face…YAY!  I’ve got seborrheic dermatitis around my nose, basically a red
rash that rings around both of my nostrils. It is raised and bumpy in some areas. Sometimes it will blister or flake away. It has also has given me itchy flaky scalp, dry itchy skin all over my body, and weird acne in my eyebrows, at the hairline, on my scalp, my upper back & neck and behind my ears. Soooo yeah! This has been going on for months now!!
BEYOND FRUSTRATING!! I just want this off of my face already!!! I’ve been really fighting this rash but it just REFUSES to go away!!

 doctor who angry david tennant frustrated yelling GIF

I’ve had this redness around my nose a few times before, but it’s always gone away on its own. This time it won’t budge. I have been treating it with two different creams twice a day for over two months now. Just last week, I noticed it getting worse, exactly where I have been applying those creams. My nose became riddled with tons of tiny little white heads! It looked so gross, like I was having acne breakouts super concentrated on my nostrils!! Weirdest thing! Of course my natural inclination is to get rid of the white heads, but that just starts blood and then I can’t stop the bleeding!! Ugh!!! {Another fun side effect of my crohn’s medication–I bleed a lot easier than normal. If I scratch a bug bite, things turn into a mess real quick!} Needless to say–Frustration city!

I just don’t want anyone to see me like this but…I literally do not have control over this and I have to get things done. I feel like I have tried everything at this point. I’ve tried washing my face more and I’ve tried washing it less. I’ve tried changing my diet. Obviously I’ve tried a number of different cream treatments. I’ve tried switching up what skincare products I use on my face. I’ve tried not using products on my face. But NOTHING seems to work! I was even given specific shampoo and bodywash to help with the itchy dry skin and scalp situation. This whole thing genuinely makes me feel like I’m dirty and gross all over my body. Like I have bad hygiene, even though I know I don’t! It’s just the itchiness and the ugly redness and acne–ugh!! So of course I have isolated myself–because when you have this unclean feeling all over your body, you don’t want to be around others.

Phew…. This is incredibly embarrassing for me, Guys this is really hard for me to share all this so openly. I do not usually share this side of myself, I tend to keep it inside. I’m a little anxious because I’m afraid I will be judged for how I look or think. But I’m just gonna push through this.

I legitimately feel like I’m relearning a life lesson from my teen years. “What you look like, is not who you are…it’s just what you look like. Who you are is on the inside.” I’m 31! I know that my personality is me, not what just happens to be on my face! However, I keep having flashbacks to when I was a teenager, when zits felt like the end of the world. Back then I was always scared I was attracting the wrong kind of attention to myself, so I would try to hide it because I was ashamed and embarrassed. I’ve been reliving those same emotions, which feels like regression. Leading to feelings of disappointment in myself and failure.

I honestly didn’t expect this to impact my self image and my emotional state. I suppose I expected more from myself at this stage in my life. THIS on top of all the other symptoms I have to deal with right now, just feels like too much. Since this isn’t one of those invisible symptoms and I’ve had to look at it every day for months, my emotions have been down in the dumps. I don’t feel like my full happy self. And unfortunately that is just part of this journey sometimes. That is a reality. It will get better, I know that.

But right now– 

I have to accept where I am
Recognize how I feel
Know it is a normal reaction
Don’t let it consume me 
And just move on with doing the best that I can.
Because that is all I can do.

This week the nose situation has calmed down a bit, who knows why, but I will take anything that looks like progress! The pictures included in this article are actually of the rash in it’s calmed down state, only because I didn’t think to take pictures when the rash was at its worst. But I figured I better take pictures now so I can share with you. AND Just in case my nose decides to be miraculously cured by the time I get to my dermatologist appt next week! Ha ha ha! That is just my luck!

I can’t believe I’m posting these completely unflattering pictures of my rashy nose on the internet!! Ha ha ha! But I really want to share my journey with you guys, because I don’t see too many people talking about these weirder side effects that can occur. I hope it helps someone else know they aren’t alone in their frustrations. Or perhaps it just educates friends and family members about what some of us are going through. Either way I hope you get some value out of this! If you’d like me to update y’all after I see my dermatologist, let me know!

What frustrations have you experienced from Crohn’s disease that just drove you nuts? Have you ever isolated yourself because of your symptoms?


Published by Jana Rosenberger

I blog about my life with Crohn's disease and all things quality-of-life. I don't sugar coat this journey but I do find a way to laugh!

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