Having a cold or congestion due to allergies can be miserable especially at the holidays. Besides taking medication that can leave you tired, how can you get some relief? Sinus rinse to the rescue!
Congestion is when the membranes lining your nose become inflamed and irritated. Your body produces excess mucus in an effort to flush the irritation or allergens. A sinus rinse flushes the mucus out which makes it easier to breathe.
You can buy a sinus rinse kit at a grocery or drug store. They come with saline packets to make your rinse. The recipe is one cup of warm distilled or sterile water and one packet or ½ teaspoon of salt and a pinch of baking soda. The packets are pharmaceutical grade as compared to using your own salt and baking soda. You can also use a Neti pot or nasal irrigator.
How to do a sinus rinse:
1. Lean forward over a sink or in the shower.
2. Insert the nasal wash bottle in one side of your nose.
3. Gently squeeze the solution in your nose.
4. Don’t block the opposite side.
5. Alternate sides of your nose until the water is gone.
6. Blow your nose.
7. Do this three or four times per day.
8. Make a new solution for each use.
9. Rinse your equipment after use and air dry or disinfect in the microwave according to the directions with the bottle.
10. For babies and small children, use a soft rubber bulb syringe.
Other ways to reduce congestion:
1. Keep the nose moist—use a humidifier or vaporizer in your bedroom with the door closed. A whole house humidifier helps as well.
2. Apply warm compresses to your face.
3. Prop yourself up on extra pillows at night.
4. Take long showers.
5. Drink lots of fluids to help thin your mucus.
6. Avoid chlorinated pools which can be irritating.
7. Avoid common irritants like cigarette smoke and sudden temperature changes.
Call your Chiropractic doctor if you have:
1. Swelling in your face, forehead, eyes, the side of your nose or cheeks.
2. Blurred vision.
3. Throat pain especially if you have white or yellow spots on the back of your throat or tonsils.
4. Nasal discharge that has a bad odor especially if it is only on one side or is a color other than yellow or white.
5. Cough for more than 10 days especially if your mucus is yellow-green or gray.
6. Clear or bloody nasal discharge following a head injury.
7. Nasal congestions and sinus pressure more than 7-10 days or symptoms are severe.
8. Nasal discharge with fever.
9. Asthma or COPD or take immune-suppressing medicine.
10. A child that is younger than two months and has a fever.
11. A baby with runny nose or congestion that is causing difficulty nursing or is making breathing difficult.
References: WebMD, NIH, Mayo Clinic
Don’t be miserable! Get some relief. Most individuals swear by them once they try it. Have you ever tried one? Will you give it a try the next time you have a cold or congestion due to allergies?