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    When This Woman Was 3 Years Old, She Shoved A Bead Up Her Nose, Forgot All About It, And Just Discovered It Again At Age 23

    This story involves a calcified booger bead. Read at your own risk.

    If you've ever been a child, there's a good chance you shoved something up your nose at some point in your youth. I'm not here to judge — just stating facts.

    BBC

    Well, 23-year-old Hannah Hamilton happens to have a very unique story when it comes to nostrils and random objects.

    She recently shared a TikTok about how she found a plastic bead she shoved up her nose when she was just 3 years old. Nearly 10 million people became invested in her story:

    video-player.buzzfeed.com / Via Caters News

    In her TikTok, she states, "When I was like 3, I remember sticking a bead up my nose and being like, 'It's not coming out.' I didn't tell anyone. I don't know why. But I didn't tell anyone that I stuck this bead up my nose and [I] forgot about it. This is probably TMI, but I had a sinus infection a couple of weeks ago and I had this massive booger I could not get out...it was super painful, and it was bothering me..."

    Nickelodeon

    "So, I got one of those earwax cleaning cameras. I know you're not supposed to use them anywhere else, but I used it in my nose to see if I could see this and it was just BIG. And I couldn't get it out. Finally, it dislodged and I guess it went to the back of my nose or something, but it was gone the next day and I was like, 'Great, GONE!' Well, it just came back and it was really painful and I was trying to get it out. I was blowing my nose really aggressively, really hard — I couldn't get it out. I got the little camera out again and I looked and there was a little bit of blue on it. And that brought back that memory of that bead from when I was like 3 years old."

    Nickelodeon

    "Well, I finally got it out. It was very painful. But a bead — a blue bead that has been in my nose for 20 years just came out of my nose — 20 years I've been living with a bead inside my nose and I had no idea," Hannah concluded.

    NBC

    Now, I know what you're thinking. Evidence or it didn't happen! Well, I'm happy to report that Hannah delivered:

    video-player.buzzfeed.com / Via Caters News

    I must warn you that there are CALCIFIED BOOGERS stuck to this blue bead. SO, CLICK AT YOUR OWN RISK:

    video-player.buzzfeed.com / Via Caters News

    If you're in a little shock, take a quick breather 'cause we are gonna get more details directly from Hannah about this booger bead!

    WB

    Hannah told BuzzFeed that when she was younger, her mom was into arts and crafts, so they always had beads and glitter around the house. "I remember pulling the bead out of a basket in the closet. I wanted to see if it would fit in my nose, but then couldn't get it out. As far as I remember, I didn't tell my parents — which was a funny choice, considering my mom was a nurse of 10 years," she said.

    Every few years, Hannah said she would remember the bead, and about a year ago, actually told her fiancé that she remembered sticking a bead in her nose as a kid but didn't remember it ever coming out. "I, of course, assumed it was not a real memory — maybe something that I had seen or heard from a show or book. Or perhaps, from a warning of a parent telling me not to make this mistake, oops!"

    When Hannah saw blue in her nose with the earwax camera, the memory of the bead flooded back to her. "Prying it out definitely hurt, but not as much as you'd think — and it was only for a few seconds. I stared at it in amazement because it was HUGE and was inside me for 20 years!"

    video-player.buzzfeed.com / Via Caters News

    Now that the bead is officially out (and Hannah's sinus infection is cleared up), she says she is breathing clearly and feels great. "However, compared to the last 20 years, there really is no difference. I can't smell any better, breathe any better, and I don't notice any difference in the size of my nose," she said.

    OK, so since we know there are probably hundreds of thousands of kids around the world sticking random objects up their noses right now, we decided to speak to an expert to see if they have thoughts or advice!

    Fox

    BuzzFeed spoke to ear, nose, and throat (ENT) Dr. Tonia L. Farmer, who has been in practice for 20 years. She confirmed that it is very common for kids to put things up their noses. "Toddlers and young children are curious. Just like infants and toddlers tend to put everything they get their hands on in their mouth, they also will experiment with insertion in places like their nose and ears. It’s natural for them to explore things within their reach. Some parents may never even realize their child put a foreign body in their nose — and it’s only discovered during a routine exam," she said.

    Dr. Farmer said that, typically, foreign bodies are discovered quickly because the child will pick their nose or complain of discomfort. But if it's not immediately discovered, there are signs that parents can look out for. "These include a foul smell from the child’s nose, purulent drainage from one nostril (it’s more common for children to put objects into one nostril versus both), and sometimes bleeding," she said.

    She added that most foreign objects that are stuck in the nose are not dangerous — they are just irritating. 


    The one foreign body that is very dangerous and the worst-case scenario is a button battery. "They can easily fit up a child’s nostril. The moist environment inside the nostril will cause battery acid to seep out, causing a chemical reaction that can destroy the mucous membrane layer inside the nose. It’s very important to remove button batteries immediately. This type of nasal foreign body is considered an emergency."

    Antonioguillem / Getty Images/iStockphoto

    The blue bead that was in Hannah's nose is considered an inorganic object. "Inorganic foreign bodies are less irritating and can be asymptomatic unlike organic objects like food, wood, or a sponge. Organic types of objects are more irritating to the mucous membranes. Also, the bead was most likely lodged in a place in the nose that didn’t block airflow or the sinus passageway. Basically, it was in a hidden, quiet place that didn’t cause Hannah any problems until many years later. The bead could have finally moved its position and caused the sinus infection to 'shine light' on the foreign body," explained Dr. Farmer.

    A child with two crayons stuck up their nostrils
    D. Sharon Pruitt Pink Sherbet Ph / Getty Images

    "Bead foreign bodies are common and don’t usually cause serious problems, but any foreign body left in the nose can block airflow through the affected nostril, cause bleeding, scarring, or infection. It’s also possible for the foreign body to travel deep into the nose and be inhaled or aspirated into the lung," she added.

    According to Dr. Farmer, if a foreign body is easily seen in the front of the nostril, it’s possible to remove it safely. "Pinching the opposite nostril and blowing somewhat forcibly out the affected nostril often expels the foreign body. Younger children may not be able to blow their noses, so parents have to be careful if trying to remove them. I suggest attempting once, but no more than twice to remove it if it is easily seen. More attempts can cause the object to be pushed inside further, cause more irritation, or traumatize the child to the point that they won’t tolerate removal by a professional."

    A doctor checking a toddler's nostrils
    Marko Geber / Getty Images

    "Some parents have been successful at performing the Mother’s Kiss Technique on toddlers. This should only be attempted if the object is easily seen in the front of the nostril. This technique involves the parent sealing their mouth over the child’s mouth while pinching the unaffected nostril close. The parent blows into the child’s mouth and the object should be expelled," added Dr. Farmer.

    "There’s no foolproof way to prevent a child from putting objects in their nose. Things happen! But there are ways to lessen the incidents. Parents should keep smaller objects out of reach of small hands as best as possible, especially those items smaller than the nostril openings. Remind children that they are not to put anything inside their nose, but be prepared to reinforce this over and over and over again. For some children, the trauma of getting the foreign body out is enough to prevent them from doing it again."

    Luckily, in Hannah's case, the bead didn't cause any lasting consequences — just some internal cosmetic changes! Her ENT told her that the bead had left an indent inside of her nose that looked as though a section had been surgically removed. "But he let me know that there were going to be no long-term health effects and that my nose was healthy!"

    Special thanks to Hannah for sharing her story and Dr. Farmer for explaining everything we need to know about foreign objects and noses. You can follow Hannah on TikTok and Instagram — and you can follow Dr. Farmer here.