Rhinitis is a term used to describe nasal symptoms, such as a stuffy and/or runny nose that frequently accompanies the common cold, sinusitis, and allergies. If you are dealing with nasal symptoms, no matter the cause, there are several ways you can breath easier.
Use Preventative Strategies
Some cases of rhinitis, such as those associated with allergy and sinus problems, can be minimized if you use preventative measures. Many people experience seasonal changes in their sinus and allergy concerns, making it easier to predict when problems will occur. To offset seasonal symptoms, it is best to begin taking medication a few weeks before the allergy season. This will give your medications a chance to build-up in your system and reduce symptoms before they start.
Pay attention to the weather in your area, which can give you an idea if the allergy season will start earlier than normal. For example, pollen season, which typically starts in the late winter or early spring may start in January if your area had an unseasonably mild winter.
Incorporate Decongestants Sparingly
Nasal decongestants can help temporarily alleviate a stuffy nose, but they must be used sparingly. After a few days of using decongestants multiple times per day, you may experience a rebound stuffy nose that is only alleviated with cessation of decongestants. The worst offender for rebound effects is nasal decongestant sprays. If you need a decongestant for more than a few days, it is time to speak with your doctor about alternatives.
Nasal steroids, which may be available over-the-counter or by prescription, are designed for long-term use and are more effective than nasal decongestants. In addition to being designed for regular use, they help alleviate nasal inflammation, which is often the underlying cause of stuffiness.
It is important to keep your nasal passages moisturized, especially to counteract the drying effect of antihistamines. A quick way to add moisture is to use a saline nasal spray. You can carry the bottle in your pocket or purse and use it throughout the day. The extra moisture can prevent your nasal passages from becoming dry and cracked, which can cause nosebleeds. Additionally, moisture will help wash away allergens and debris that contribute to irritation or sinus infections.
When you are at home or in your office, a personal humidifier is helpful. For an added boost, purchase a humidifier that can also be used as an oil diffuser. This will allow you to include menthol or eucalyptus oils, which can reduce a stuffy nose while adding moisture.
Rhinitis can occur with many common ailments. Fortunately, there are several easily accessible ways to prevent or reduce symptoms and make you more comfortable. To learn more, contact services like Northwest Asthma & Allergy Center PS.