Stuffy nose at night or daytime is an annoying thing. It causes difficulty in breathing, poor sound when you talk, nose drips and runs. Get more insights on how to clear a stuffy nose instantly and fast overnight and while sleeping.
Nasal congestion when the underlying tissues and blood vessels in sinus get inflamed or swollen due to infection causing a stuffy feeling. This type of blockage may or may not associate runny nose or discharge as most people presume.
Stuffy nose is not highly contagious in adults other that creating a discomfort feeling. It is however serious in young children and this should lead you to quickly establish on how to clear a stuffy nose in infants before it causes complication in breathing and swallowing.
What Causes Stuffy or Runny Nose
Any factor that irritates or inflames the nasal tissues causes this condition. They include the following:
Viral invasion of the immune system can lead to a cold which is normally experienced commonly by young children and less common in adults. This is due to the fact that immune system strengthens with age.
The viral can be transmitted body contact of hands to nose or through airborne. Human body responds to such infections in various ways. Histamine is secreted, a chemical agent that increases the blood flow to the affected area. This causes increase in the amount of fluids at the nasal tissues and membranes hence swelling.
In most cases, bacterial infection of the nose and sinus will follow immediately after viral due to the weakened immune system. You can easily tell of this by observing on the color of mucus. If it turns from clear to green yellowish, it s and indication of bacterial infection.
Sinus infection results to blocked nose due to production of thick discharge in form of mucus. It may associate other symptoms such as pain in the roof of the mouth, cheeks, behind eyes, around forehead and in ears.
Sinus infections can become chronic and associate more severe symptoms such as postnasal discharge, polyps which is characterized by fleshy growths in the nose. If not treated on time, sinus infections can spread to the adjacent tissues such as the lower airways. This can eventually result to chronic cough, bronchitis and asthma.
Viral infections of the nose can hardly be treated with medication. Antihistamines and home remedies for stuffy nose can help decongest and management of symptoms of cold. Chronic cases especially in infants should be taken to a physician. Acute sinus infections due to bacteria can be treated using antibiotics while a chronic one requires special medical attention.
This is the inflammation of the nose and nasal membranes due to an infection of nerves and blood vessels in charge supply. Adrenaline levels also enhances the constriction of capillaries and arteries. Factors that affects the normal opening sizes of the blood capillaries and arteries in these tissues are the main reason for the inflammation.
Such factors include allergies, psychological stress, pregnancy, certain medications for high blood pressure, inadequate thyroid functioning, prolonged overuse of nasal decongestion sprays and other irritants such as tobacco smoking and perfumes.
Allergic reactions are form of body response to substances. Most allergies causes some conditions such as hay fever, colds, allergic rhinitis, and rose fever and grass fever among others. Substances that causes allergy include; pollen, dust, mold, some types of medication, some types of food substances and drinks.
Allergy substances causes the body to release histamine which causes symptoms such as itching, sneezing, runny nose, congestion and fever. Methods on how to clear a stuffy nose caused by allergic reactions mainly utilizes antihistamines such as Benadryl, Dimetane, Chlortimetron and Hismanal among others.
Skin test and blood test can also be done to help in the management of allergies. This can however be treated by ant allergy injections which normally last for a period of five years. NOTE, pregnant women and children should be taken to doctor for further examination before given any medication.
Body structural abnormalities
Injury or structural abnormalities may happen leading to a deformation of the nose and nasal tissues such as the septum that divides the two sides of the nose. This can happen during the birth process and can be corrected by surgical procedures if a threat to normal breathing.
Structural abnormalities such as enlargement of the adenoids, tonsil like tissues in the back of the mouth. Both adults and children can experience a stuffy nose, snoring and runny nose as a sign of this condition. Surgery may the best option for the removal of tonsils.
Development of tumors in the nose is also one of the causes of blocked nose. Children also have tendencies of putting foreign objects in the noses. If that happens seek urgent medical attention form a nearby hospital especially when a smelling pus like discharge drains from the nostril.
How to Clear a Stuffy Nose, Instantly, Overnight
Here are various treatments on how to get rid of a congested nose:
- Humidifier: This involves breathing in a moist air which can help in the soothing of the inflamed tissues in the nose. It can be done using a humidifier machine that generates moisture in the house that fills the air which helps in the emptying of fluids in the nose.
- Steamy shower: Steam helps to thin out mucus in the nose sinuses and restores normal breathing within a short period of time. Alternatively, breathe in warm steam from hot sink water by covering the head around it with a towel. Be careful to avoid burning.
- Always stay hydrated: Keep taking fluids such as warm water, tea, juice, soup. This maintains fluid low constant in the body which eventually decongest the nose. The fluids also reduces pressure in the sinuses hence less inflammation and irritation.
- Use nasal saline spray: This helps in the increase of moisture in nasal passages hence helping in emptying the fluids that causes the inflammation. Saline sprays are available over the counter and should be obtained under doctor prescription since it also contain medication.
- Warm compress: This works like stream water or humidifier. Soak a towel in hot water and press the water out of it before folding it to place on the forehead. This not only help in pain relieve but also an effective method on how to clear a stuffy nose at home.
- Decongestant medication: This include nasal spray and pills available over the counter. They contain medication suitable for pain and inflammation relieve. Examples include Afrin and Sinex as nasal sprays, Sudafed and Sudogest as decongestion pills. They should be used correctly as prescribed for effective outcome.
- Antihistamine allergy medicine: These are special medication for the decongestion of blocked or runny nose caused by an allergic reaction. They relieve nasal swelling and inflammation. When combined with a decongestant, antihistamines are more effective in easing clogged up nose. Be aware of the side effects such as drowsiness and follow instructions before use.
- Try home remedies and other natural ways on how to clear your stuffy nose without medicine. If any of the above is not suitable for you, visit your doctor for treatment.
How to Get Rid of a Stuffy Nose – Home Remedies, Without Medicine
Various home remedies for nasal congestion can help in getting rid of clogged nose naturally. They include the following:
- Garlic and Turmeric powder.
These are natural ingredients that has both antiviral and antifungal properties. It is however suitable for fighting most respiratory infections including those that causes blocked nose. To use this method here are simple procedures:
- Boil two cloves of garlic in one cup of water.
- Mix with one tea spoon of turmeric powder.
- Drink the mixture especially on a daily basis until the congestion clears.
- Alternatively you can eat fresh garlic cloves.
- Apple Cider Vinegar and Honey.
You can easily clear clogged up nose fast using apple cider vinegar. It thins out mucus and helps to relieve the pain and inflammation of the sinuses. Honey is also a natural antioxidant that has antibacterial properties. Here is how to use:
- Mix one table spoon of honey and two of apple cider vinegar in a cup of water.
- Stir the mixture to form a concoction.
- Take three times a day and the symptoms will disappear within few days.
- Peppermint or Carom Seeds Steam.
If you are planning of how to clear a stuffy nose instantly, think of steam inhalation. To make it more effective, mix the hot water with carom seeds or peppermint: Here is how to go about it:
- Take one tablespoon of crushed carom seeds and add to the boiling water. Cover your head with a towel and inhale the steam. Do it carefully to avoid burning.
- Alternatively add few drops of peppermint in place of crushed carom seeds and inhale the steam.
- Repeat daily and the runny nose will stop after few days.
- NOTE: pregnant women and infants are not advised to use this method.
- Nasal Irrigation.
This involves the use of saline solution which is effective the treatment of nasal congestion at home. It thin out mucus and drains out irritants in the nasal passages. Here is how to use:
- Take a glass of warm distilled water and mix with one teaspoon of salt.
- Uses an irrigation device to run the solution in the nasal passages.
- Do it twice a day for effective outcome.
- Clean the apparatus after use to avoid reinfection.
- Eucalyptus Oil.
This natural ingredient has anti-inflammatory properties and is suitable to be used as a decongestant agent. Here are procedures on how to apply:
- Place two to three drop of the eucalyptus oil on a piece of cloth and inhale.
- If you are thinking of how to clear your stuffy nose while sleeping, simply place the piece of cloth at your pillow and place your head as you sleep. The aroma will help in the decongestion.
- Black Pepper and Sesame Oil.
This ingredient is suitable for relieving blocked sinuses. It is mainly used to induce sneezing that eventually helps mucus and allergens out. Here is how to use:
- Place a little amount of black pepper on your palm and add few drops of sesame oil.
- Dip one finger in the mixture and gently apply under your nose.
- Inhale the strong aroma and may make you sneeze.
- Repeat if several times for better outcome.
- Fenugreek and Warm water.
Fenugreek is a suitable natural ingredient to treat nasal congestion due to its anti-inflammatory properties. It also helps cleanse the mucous membranes due to the heat and moisture. Here is how to prepare:
- Mix one or two teaspoons of crushed fenugreek seeds in a glass of water.
- Boil the solution.
- Strain and drink it while it is warm.
- Repeat two or three times a day until you get complete relief from the problem.
- Herbal Tea
Hot herbal tea can help thin the mucus clogging your nasal passages. The herbs in herbal tea will also help flush out the toxins from your body.
To use, simply drink a cup of hot herbal tea few times daily until the congestion clears. Peppermint tea is also considered appropriate for nasal congestion as the menthol in this herb helps open up the nasal passage.
- Warm Water
Aiding the flow of mucus out of the nasal passages is on way on how to clear a stuffy nose. Warm water is good for this purpose and it also helps to prevent the tissues from drying. Here is how to go about it:
- You can apply hot water using a humidifier device.
- You can run hot shower for some time to enable steam build up for the purpose.
- Worm compress using a piece of towel soaked in warm water.
- Repeat several times a day and you will see your congested nose clearing.
When to See a Doctor
In most cases a stuffy or runny nose is usually just an annoyance especially to adults. But it can be a sign of a more serious problem, and it may be serious in infants which may require serious medical attention.
Call your doctor if:
- Symptoms last more than 10 days.
- There is fever, particularly if it lasts more than three days.
- Your nasal discharge is green and is accompanied by sinus pain or fever.
- You have asthma or emphysema, or you’re taking immune-suppressing medications.
- There is blood in your nasal discharge or a persistent clear discharge after a head injury.
Pregnant women and children need to see a doctor before attempting on any method on how to clear a runny nose at home. Therefore, call your child’s doctor if:
- The child is younger than 2 months and has a fever.
- Your baby’s runny nose or congestion causes trouble nursing or makes breathing difficult.
- You are pregnant and symptoms are severe.
Problem of stuffy or runny nose is common and every adult goes through it at least thrice a year. For children it may be regular due to underdeveloped immune system. If you experience it, stay composed and follow some of the suggestions we have discussed above.
More Sources and References
- Cold, Flu, & Cough Health Center: http://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/cold-guide/cold-remedies
- Nasal congestion: http://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/nasal-congestion/basics/definition/sym-20050644
- What causes stuffy nose? 23 possible conditions: http://www.healthline.com/symptom/stuffy-nose
- Stuffy Nose: http://www.entnet.org/content/stuffy-nose
- Home Remedies for Nasal Congestion: http://www.top10homeremedies.com/home-remedies/home-remedies-for-sinus-congestion.html
- How to Clear a Stuffy Nose: http://www.healthline.com/health-slideshow/stuffy-nose-relief
- How to Clear a Stuffy or Runny Nose In 1 Minute: http://www.healthyandnaturalworld.com/how-to-clear-a-stuffy-or-runny-nose-in-1-minute/