Substance Use

What Is Alcoholic Nose?

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Physical Side Effects of Alcohol Abuse

Alcoholic nose, or drinker’s nose, is an informal term that refers to an enlarged purple or red nose thought to be caused by chronic alcohol use disorder.

The medical term for this condition is rhinophyma, but is “alcoholic nose” really from alcohol abuse? While it’s true that chronic alcohol abuse can lead to many health problems, there is no definitive evidence that drinking alcohol causes the so-called alcoholic nose.

Symptoms of rhinophyma are more commonly seen in men with a history of rosacea flare-ups. Rosacea is a skin condition that causes redness and swelling in the face. While the exact cause of rhinophyma is unknown, it’s thought to be associated with an overgrowth of blood vessels and connective tissue in the nose.

While there is no clearcut evidence about alcoholic nose, excessive alcohol consumption can lead to a variety of health problems. If you or someone you love is struggling with alcoholism, getting help as soon as possible is essential. Alcohol addiction is a serious condition that can lead to health, relationship, and financial problems.

If you need help quitting drinking, call Zinnia Healing at (855) 430-9439.

What Does Alcohol Do to the Nose?

Can heavy drinking damage the skin and blood vessels in the nose? While drinking alcohol may not cause an alcoholic nose, it can aggravate existing rhinophyma cases.

Rhinophyma is a condition that occurs when rosacea, a chronic skin disorder, spreads to the nose. Rosacea causes visibly red or swollen skin and sometimes bumps or acne-like conditions. When severe rosacea spreads to the nose, it’s called rhinophyma.

There are several colloquial terms for this condition, including:

  • Whiskey nose
  • Drinker’s nose
  • Gin nose

Rhinophyma is a serious condition that can lead to difficulty breathing and sleeping. If you think you may have rhinophyma, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible.

Individuals with rhinophyma are at risk for skin cancer within the affected tissue. The most common type of skin cancer in these cases is basal cell carcinoma. Basal cell carcinoma is a slow-growing type of skin cancer that is not typically fatal. However, if severe cases are left untreated, it can cause disfigurement. Treatment for basal cell carcinoma usually involves surgery to remove the affected tissue. In some cases, radiation therapy may also be necessary. 

However, alcohol abuse is not considered a cause of rhinophyma. Rather, drinker’s nose is a condition stemming from rosacea. If you think you may have rhinophyma, it’s important to see a doctor or dermatologist for diagnosis and treatment.

What Does a Drinker’s Nose Look Like?

If you have rhinophyma, you may also experience other symptoms of rosacea, such as:

  • Facial redness
  • Visible blood vessels
  • Acne-like bumps
  • Eye irritation

Rosacea can affect anyone, but it is most commonly seen in middle-aged adults. Men are also more likely to develop rhinophyma than women.

While there is no cure for rosacea, treatments are available to keep the symptoms under control.

Can Your Nose Get Bigger From Drinking?

It’s a common belief that drinking alcohol can lead to a more prominent nose. But is there any truth to this claim?

First, it’s essential to understand how the nose works.

The nose is made up of cartilage, a type of connective tissue. This means it can grow and change shape over time. However, the cartilage in the nose is not very flexible, so it can only grow so much.

Rhinophyma exacerbated by heavy drinking can cause the cartilage cells to swell, resulting in a bulbous or “flared” appearance. So while drinking alcohol may not make your nose physically bigger, it can play a role in altering its appearance.

If you’re concerned about the effects of alcohol on your nose, you may want to consider cutting back on your consumption. Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to many other health problems, both short and long-term. These include liver damage, heart disease, cancer, mental health issues, and organ damage. 

Alcohol addiction is a serious condition that requires treatment.

If you’re struggling with alcohol abuse, it’s not too late to get help. There are many effective treatments for alcohol addiction, and Zinnia Healing can give you the support you need to overcome your addiction and start living a healthier life. We offer various treatment options, including inpatient and outpatient programs, and our staff is dedicated to helping each patient achieve lasting sobriety.

Call Zinnia Healing at (855) 430-9439.

How Is Alcoholic Nose Diagnosed?

Rhinophyma is a slowly progressive condition that results in the enlargement and thickening of the nose. The most common symptom of rhinophyma is a bulbous nose, which can gradually become larger over time. In some cases, the nose may also become red and irritated.

Rhinophyma is typically diagnosed based on a physical examination. However, a skin biopsy may sometimes be necessary to rule out other conditions.

Can Alcoholic Nose Be Treated?

Treatment for rhinophyma can vary depending on the severity of the condition. In mild cases, topical treatments may be sufficient to improve the appearance of the nose. However, more severe cases may require surgery to remove excess tissue.

If you’re struggling with alcohol addiction, many treatment options are available. Treatment can vary depending on the severity of your addiction but typically includes a combination of detox, counseling, and support groups.

Inpatient treatment may be necessary if you cannot stop drinking on your own. Medication can also be used to help manage withdrawal symptoms and cravings.


Excessive drinking can lead to many problems, including liver disease, and can impact your appearance. However, the term alcoholic nose is not a medically-recognized condition.

If you’re concerned about the effects of alcohol on your nose, it’s essential to talk to your doctor. They can help you understand the risks and recommend substance abuse treatment.

Alcohol abuse can lead to serious health problems, so getting help is crucial if you think you or a loved one may have a problem. There are many treatment options available, and with the assistance of a medical professional, you can develop a plan that’s right for you.

Contact Zinnia Healing today to learn more about our alcohol addiction treatment programs. We offer various services, including alcohol rehab, detox, individual therapy, and group counseling. We also have many resources available to help you through every step of the recovery process.

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