Three Effective Treatment Principles for Sinus Sufferers

Are you among the 1 in 5 Americans who suffer from sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, nasal congestion, postnasal drip, acid reflux, or asthma? Did you know that by treating your nose effectively, you could also treat or prevent other problems? Did you know that many of the strategies for treating your nose and sinuses also apply to other conditions, including even acid reflux and asthma? They Yes! And it is very important to treat the nose effectively because they are all interconnected.

Before you read on, please note that I am a school psychologist and nasal ailment with the above conditions as well as empty nose syndrome, but I am not a health professional. While these treatments have generally been effective for me, everyone responds differently to them, so what helped me may not benefit someone else. I recommend that you discuss the treatment ideas in this article with your doctor before trying them. The best course of action with any health-related problem is to consult with a medical professional, and I take no responsibility for the decisions made by people reading this article.

Now, a recommendation that all sinus sufferers would do well to follow: a key concept to remember when treating your nose is that your They take control of your health. No one else will do that for you. In fact, I learned that even though my nasal problems seem pretty serious, since I suffer from empty nose syndrome, I actually got fewer sinus infections than other people around me because I learned more about my nose and followed treatment strategies that they worked fine for me. Many of the treatment principles are universal.

Three guiding principles that can support your nasal health are:

Principle 1: Keep your nose moist while keeping mucus moving.

Principle 2: Maintain a good blood supply to the nose.

Principle 3: Relax.

A key strategy for Principle 1, keeping the nose moist while moving mucus, is nasal irrigation. This is a natural remedy that I believe everyone who suffers from sinusitis should understand and do. In short, it consists of rinsing the nose and sinuses with salt and water. I am so convinced of nasal irrigation that I believe it should be tried first before considering nose or sinus surgery (unless your situation demands it).

Nasal irrigation was made popular in 2007 by Oprah Winfrey, who had Dr. Mehmet Oz introduce the neti pot to viewers. Dr. Oz suggests that the water used for irrigation should be lukewarm and should include salt; Without salt in the mix which mimics the natural concentration of salt in the body, the water would irritate the delicate nasal membranes. He also points out how many ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialists recognize the value of doing the irrigation, which can be more effective than medications to treat nasal congestion, congestion, or allergies, for example, because it involves directly clean the nose and sinuses. Have you noticed the proliferation of irrigation products in your local pharmacy compared to just 10 years ago? The number of products has increased significantly, because there is a lot of value in cleaning your nose with salt water. If only nasal irrigation were equivalent and as well understood as washing dirty hands!

The physician who pioneered the concept of nasal irrigation in the United States is Dr. Murray Grossan of Los Angeles, an innovative otolaryngologist who created the Grossan Hydro Pulse nasal sinus irrigation system, which has reportedly sold 400,000 till the date. Interestingly, based on feedback, Dr. Grossan estimates that 10% or 40,000, of these clients are those who suffer from empty nose. You can visit their website at for more information on Hydro Pulse. Dr. Grossan needed to find an effective remedy to treat his patients, many of whom did not have much money, without using drugs. I use Hydro Pulse twice a day, in the morning and at night. It is important to note that the Hydro Pulse has clear advantages versus other irrigation products, such as a neti pot or a rubber bulb (the latter can harbor bacteria):

1) The Hydro Pulse pulses at a rate to stimulate the nasal cilia to their best rate, restoring cilia function.

2) The Hydro Pulse allows you to irrigate both the nose and throat. It is important to irrigate both, particularly as what is in the nose goes down the throat. Throat irrigation can bring circulation to the throat, which thins mucus and reduces postnasal drip.

Another key strategy as part of Principle 1 that I think everyone should keep in mind before considering nasal or sinus surgery, except in emergency situations, is getting the right treatment for your allergies. Allergies can cause tissue enlargement of the turbinates which can block nasal breathing, so effective allergy treatment can reduce the size of the turbinates, an effect that can be very beneficial. (Please note: Turbinates are very complex structures in the nose with the primary turbinates about the size of a finger and play a key role in heating, humidifying and filtering air, directing and sensing airflow and providing 50% of resistance to general airflow to the lungs). This treatment may consist of allergy medications and injections. Allergy injections, for example, have been shown in the medical literature to improve the immune system and the functioning of mucociliary clearance. These are usually given for 3 to 5 years for optimal benefit.

A third key strategy of Principle 1 is proper diet. This strategy may seem self-explanatory, but it cannot be stressed enough. A number of tips to keep in mind in terms of diet include drinking 8 8-ounce glasses of water per day; drink hot tea with lemon and honey, particularly during a period of cold or sinusitis; eat chicken soup; and eating foods that might be beneficial for sinus health, such as vegetables, fresh fruits, spicy foods, wheat products, and high-protein foods. Conversely, foods to avoid include caffeinated products and alcohol, which increase nasal dryness, and tobacco smoke, which worsens the lungs and thus makes it more difficult to breathe.

Principle 2 is to maintain a good blood supply to the nose. Exercise is a strategy most people are familiar with and can help improve nasal function. Exercise increases blood flow throughout the body, while also increasing serotonin reuptake inhibitors which will physically decrease the likelihood that someone will develop depression. When I run outside (or walk or do some physical activity), I notice that I can breathe better through my nose. People who suffer from a runny nose tend to particularly benefit from a good blood supply to the nose, and sometimes find reversal techniques helpful. One inversion technique involves having the head lower than the rest of the body to increase blood supply to the head and the rest of the nasal tissue (the turbinates). You can buy an inversion table to do this technique.

Principle 3 is relaxation, whether it’s a good night’s sleep or reducing stress in everyday life. It is important to get enough sleep at night, which is the body’s natural way of healing. People who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to get sinus infections. I remember reading Walt Ballenberger, founder of, informing his readers that after 2.5 years, he contracted a sinus infection. The reason? She had 3 hours of sleep in a 48 hour period. However, patients with empty nose syndrome may need to undergo a sleep study and may even need a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine because their breathing difficulties make breathing much more difficult (and, in consequently, sleep). Some of the most severely affected empty nose patients report that they can only breathe for a few hours each night. Finally, reducing stress is also important for sinus sufferers, as that alone can reduce the risk of sinus infections.

If you are among the 1 in 5 Americans who suffer from sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, nasal congestion, postnasal drip, acid reflux, asthma, and/or if you have empty nose syndrome, then I encourage you to consider using the treatment strategies discussed in this article, which may just be a starting point for you to take control of your nasal health. Remember, it’s yourno one else, who will take control of your health.

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