If you’re experiencing a running nose while you’re trying to poop, it’s definitely not normal. It’s more likely caused by dehydration or constipation, both of which are common conditions that happen when you’re not drinking enough water or eating the right foods for your body.
Symptoms that can occur with this condition include abdominal pain, a dripping or thick bowel movement, and nausea. Other symptoms, such as headaches and fever, can also indicate something more serious.
Some people who have a running nose while pooping experience this for a few days or even weeks at a time. In that case, it’s worth a trip to the doctor to rule out more serious problems like an intestinal blockage or an infection.
Another cause of a runny nose when you’re pooping is something called vasomotor rhinitis, which occurs when strong odors, humidity, or temperature changes trigger the production and release of mucus. This can be caused by a cold, allergies or certain medications.
In rare cases, a leak in the membrane that surrounds the brain and spinal cord can cause a runny nose, says Dr. Lee, who also notes that a head injury or a sinus infection can lead to a CSF leak.
Other causes of a runny nose while you’re pooping include an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation in the nasal cavities and sinuses, which may respond to allergy medicine. The inflammatory response can also be triggered by a drug called acetaminophen (Tylenol), a medication that’s sometimes used for chronic pain. If you suspect that an autoimmune disorder or an underlying condition is the cause of your runny nose, talk with your doctor to see if it’s safe for you to take medication.