When you have a stuffy nose that lasts for a week, thick yellow/green mucus draining from your nose and your head is pounding (pressure behind the eyes and the cheeks), chances are that you have sinusitis. But, you have a busy life and no time for a doctor. What do you do? Start looking for home remedies for sinus infection, of course.
What Are Sinuses?
Sinuses are small cavities above your eyes as well as below them, that are usually empty and allow for air to move through your head.
If you’ve got a sinus infection, these cavities become clogged with mucus and other types of discharge. The mucus can develop a fungal or bacterial infection if it doesn’t drain correctly.
Home Remedies For Sinus Infection
One of the best sinus infection remedies is prevention. Learning how to keep your sinuses well hydrated, clear of mucus and discharge will prevent you from ever getting a sinus infection.
1. Nasal Flush
A nasal flush is when you take a warm sterile saline solution and squirt it up your nose.
The water makes its way through all of your sinus cavities before it comes out of the other nostril.
It can be an uncomfortable feeling if you’re not used to it, but the effectiveness of a sinus flush makes it one of the best home remedies for sinus infection. It really gives immediate relief, but you need to repeat the process a few times a day.
My favorite tool for sinus rinse is called NeilMed Sinus Rinse…it works really well.
One of the most popular forms of nasal flush is done with a Neti pot. The Neti pot can be a useful tool as long as you use sterile water, but it got a bad reputation when 2 people in Louisiana died because they used infected tap water to flush their sinuses.
You can get sterile water by purchasing distilled water in containers from your local grocery store, or boil water in your kettle and use it once it cools down.
When it comes to colds, sinus infections, and sore throats, steam is perhaps one of the most powerful weapons. The vapor from the hot water can moisten your sinuses and help you get rid of the mucus.
Use essential oils, or Vicks Vaporub, in your steam for better results.
3. Antihistamines and Anti-Allergy
One of the leading causes of sinusitis is clogged sinuses due to increased mucus production.
If you have seasonal allergies, or allergies to things like dust mites and pet dander, taking an antihistamine daily can stop your sinuses from building up excess mucus.
As far as natural sinus infection remedies go, making sure that you have limited allergens in your home is going to be a key preventative measure.
HEPA filters remove microscopic particles from the air. You can get HEPA filters for your vacuum cleaner and your air-conditioning system. Removing the allergens will reduce mucus buildup in your sinuses and reduce the symptoms of sinus infection.
4. NSAIDs – Over the Counter Medications
If you already have ongoing sinus pain, you want to make sure that any congestion can drain.
You can do this by getting on a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory over-the-counter medication. Some examples of an NSAID that you can get include over-the-counter ibuprofen, aspirin, and naproxen sodium.
Just be sure to follow label instructions if you are taking these medications.
Another way to relieve sinus pain is to take a decongestant. This is an excellent example of sinus infection remedy that you can do at home.
Decongestants work by breaking up the mucus and allowing the membrane in your sinus cavity to dry out. Decongestants are not approved for long-term use.
Some decongestants can give a strong “rebound effect” which will cause even greater congestion. This is only if they are used longer than their suggested time.
Make sure that you follow the directions.
6. Spicy Foods
If the thought of taking decongestants doesn’t sit well with you, try one of the natural remedies for sinus infection.
Foods like chili peppers, ghost peppers, jalapeno, serrano peppers, and other spices can stimulate your sinuses to flush naturally.
If you’ve ever eaten something that was too spicy and had your nose run you’ve seen this work firsthand. Spicy food can be a great natural decongestant to help get rid of sinus infection.
7. Grapefruit Seed Extract
This natural antibiotic is commonly used in nasal sprays, so the effects on the sinuses is quite obvious. It works by clearing out the mucus from the sinuses.
Grapefruit seed extracts are not only a home remedy for sinus infection, but are also used in sinusitis medicines.
Using a humidifier in your home, especially during sleep, can help put moisture back into the air to hydrate your sinus cavities. Having moist sinus cavities can break up the mucus and allow natural drainage.
There are so many benefits of using a humidifier!
Drinking enough water will help make sure all of your mucous membranes can function properly. In fact, fluids can help you thin out the mucus and get some sinus infection relief.
If you’re dehydrated the membranes in your body cannot produce the correct substance needed to drain sinuses.
Whether you’ve got the beginnings of a sinus infection, or you’re just feeling congested drinking enough water can help break up clogged sinus ducts.
When To See A Doctor?
If you’ve tried all of the home remedies and are still experiencing sinus pain it may be time to see your doctor.
If you begin to run a high fever, are getting dizzy, or have ear pain along with your sinus pain, see a doctor immediately.
These symptoms could mean that you need something more than home remedies for sinusitis.