5 doctors weighed in:

What's the difference between a sneeze and just blowing air out the nose? In other words, why can't I force a sneeze?

5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Kamlesh Desai
Family Medicine
3 doctors agree

In brief: Sneeze is reflex act

This is one reflex arc which is hard to reproduce.

In brief: Sneeze is reflex act

This is one reflex arc which is hard to reproduce.
Dr. Kamlesh Desai
Dr. Kamlesh Desai
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Dr. Patrick Melder
ENT - Head & Neck Surgery

In brief: Reflex

The sneeze reflex can be triggered by even mild stimulation of the the nasal lining.
When stimulated, the receptors in the lining send impulses via the fifth cranial nerve (cn v / trigeminal nerve) to sneezing center in the medulla. This triggers the sneeze reflex which is similar to the cough reflex, with the difference being that air is forced out mainly through the nose by depressing the uvula.

In brief: Reflex

The sneeze reflex can be triggered by even mild stimulation of the the nasal lining.
When stimulated, the receptors in the lining send impulses via the fifth cranial nerve (cn v / trigeminal nerve) to sneezing center in the medulla. This triggers the sneeze reflex which is similar to the cough reflex, with the difference being that air is forced out mainly through the nose by depressing the uvula.
Dr. Patrick Melder
Dr. Patrick Melder
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Dr. Patrick Melder
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