Why Are Your Nose Blocked and How to Handle It?

A stuffy nose can put you in embarrassing situations. Try a number of ways listed here to reduce inflammation, stop runny nose and make breathing easier.

A stuffy nose can make living difficult. With your nose dripping and running, it is hard to focus on anything and meet others. The urge to blow your nose will become strong at the wrong times. As a common problem, a blocked nose happens when the tissues lining swells due to inflamed blood vessels. Besides a running nose, you may also experience severe cough and sore throat if excess mucus starts running down the back of your throat. You can however try a number of remedies to fix your stuffed nose.

Why Are Your Nose Blocked?

Anything that irritates or inflames your nasal tissue or lining may cause nasal congestion. It could be anything ranging from influenza and colds to sinusitis, and various irritants such as dust or tobacco smoke. Some people may suffer from non-allergic rhinitis in which they have to live with a runny nose. Although it's not common, your stuffy nose may be due to a tumor.

How to Clear Blocked Nose?

It is definitely an annoying condition, but it is possible to learn how to clear a stuffy nose effectively.

1. Utilize a Humidifier

You can improve your condition by breathing in moist air, which really helps a lot to soothe swollen blood vessels that lead to blockage. Investing in a humidifier machine is one great way of improving the humidity level in your room. The machine works by converting water to moisture that will travel in the air and make breathing easier. Humidifiers also play a role in eliminating mucus by thinning it in your sinuses. Breathing in the humid air will also help reduce irritation that causes congestion.

2. Take a Bath

A steamy shower will work wonders when you cannot grapple with the miseries caused by a stuffy nose. Taking a steamy shower is like breathing in a room with humidifier. A shower will help thin out the mucus in your sinuses. For similar effects, you can consider breathing in steam from boiling hot water in a tub. Simply lean over the tub and place a towel around your head. Take deep breaths to unclog your nose and sinuses.

3. Take Plenty of Fluids

Staying dehydrated will help push mucus out of your nose. Drinking plenty of fluid will provide your body with extra moisture that in turn will help soothe irritated passages. You may even consider drinking warm water or other fluids like broths, herbal teas, or soups to improve your condition.

4. Try a Saline Spray

Using saline spray is a further step to stay hydrated. You can easily find a nasal saline spray to unclog your nasal passages. Several OTC sprays are available today to reduce inflammation of your blood vessels. It is a good idea to opt for a saline spray that includes decongestant medication. A pharmacist may help you in finding the right saline sprays. Don't go overboard with the idea of using saline sprays with a decongestant because extended use will worsen your condition.

5. Flush Your Sinuses

It may not look attractive, but using a neti pot to flush your sinuses will make breathing a lot easier. This device works by pushing water in your nose. It may be quite effective, but be sure to use sterile or distilled water instead of tap water. It is quite easy to use this device – simply tilt your head a bit and place one end of the pot in your nostril. Tilt the pot more to throw water in your nasal passage. This will make water to exit through your other nostril that will unclog your sinuses.

6. Apply a Warm Compress

Just like warm steam, a warm compress may also help open your nasal passageways. Get a towel and soak it in warm water. Squeeze it properly and place it over your face for a few minutes. The heat will relieve inflammation and reduce your pain. Repeat this process a few times to improve your condition.

7. Apply Vapor Rub

Containing eucalyptus, menthol and/or camphor, vapor rub will help ease congestion. Some of the most popular choices include Tiger Balm, Vicks, and IcyHot. Although a vapor rub won't treat cold symptoms, it will still help clear your blocked nose. You should apply it on your chest and throat before you go to sleep at night. As it's close to your nose, it will keep inhaling the vapors that make breathing easier. Don't rub it too close to your face or it may irritate your eyes. You may also consider putting some vapor rub on a clean cloth or tissue and place it close to your nose to inhale all the vapors.

7. Apply Vapor Rub

You can consider applying a nasal adhesive strip on your nose to widen your nostrils enough to breathe easily. You can find them easily in stores; some stores may refer to these strips as anti-snoring strips.

9. Lie in an Upright Position

You should take plenty of rest and always lie in an upright position. Elevate your head a bit by putting a pillow underneath your head. Sleeping in a recliner may also help.

10. Take Medicines

You can clear your blocked nose by using prescription medication. For starters, you can rely on decongestants that dry up and shrink your nasal passages to help get rid of a runny nose. Antihistamines prove effective to treat allergy symptoms. Nasal sprays have produced positive results as well. Just don't use OTC nasal sprays for more than 3 days on the trot.

NOTE: Many medicines for allergy, cough, and cold contain a variety of ingredients, so it is important to read the labels and take proper dosage. Consult with your doctor to ensure you can use specific cold medications.

Here's a good video to help you learn how to clear your blocked nose effectively:

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