Being frustrated with their always blocked noses and other chronic sinus problems, some people try strange methods for relief. But some of these remedies may actually worsen your sinus problems in the long term and thus may condemn you to living with chronic sinusitis. Below is a brief description of those hazardous methods used for sinus relief.
1. Some Home Remedies for Decongestion: These include spraying – mostly homemade – solutions including hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, vinegar or capsaicin (the spiciness in hot peppers) into the nose; adding betadine to nasal-rinse solutions; and inhaling irritating fumes from hot vinegars. These home remedies are really very harmful to the nose – not only to cilia, but also to olfactory function. You may lose your sense of smell over time if you regularly use such a method to decongest your nose.
Yes, it’s true that these methods may open the nasal passages very effectively, but this fact doesn’t make them your friends. They open the nose because they irritate the tissues in the nose so much that those tissues (especially the turbinates) shrink to minimize their surface area in contact with the irritating fume or liquid. This shrinkage brings about an open nose through which you can breathe freely. This relief may even last for a few hours if you have tortured your nose enough. But, all these benefits are in exchange for damage to your nasal tissues. Damaged nasal tissues make you more prone to sicknesses and inflammation, which require a regular need for decongestants. If you continue using any of these hazardous decongesting techniques, you’ll find yourself in a vicious cycle, which – if unbroken – will leave you with totally damaged nasal structures.
2. Some OTC Sinus Sprays: There are some sprays available over-the-counter which include strong bio-chemicals that kill micro-organisms. These may help to clear an existing sinus infection. However, their safety is not assessed. Usually, it takes few years for a drug to appear in the market because its side effects and other safety considerations need to be identified. Such a study is accomplished after years of clinical research. However, this is not the case for a vast majority of OTC solutions. They are usually sold as supplementary to short-circuit drug regulations. The side effects of those OTC solutions are never known due to lack of long-term investigation. This is a serious drawback if you consider using an OTC drug such as an ordinary sinus remedy for a long time.
After all, remedying chronic sinusitis cannot be achieved by killing microbes as we have explained in our book, Natural Cures for Sinusitis.
3. OTC Saline Sprays: There is also a problem with most OTC nasal saline sprays because they include preservatives. The long-term effects of these additives are not known, and they may interfere with olfaction and with other medications. So, home-made solutions are safer. They also cost less. Besides, we have everything to prepare such a solution in our homes. You may choose xylitol-added salt preparations as xylitol has been proven to be safe for nasal tissues.
I would like to finish my article with an advise: Please don’t let desperation lead you to try things just because someone advises you to do so and stay away from the homemade and -sometimes- commercial solutions we explained above.
Rick Oezhalp is a naturopath and an author of Natural Cures for Sinusitis, a groung-breaking book on sinus health. Teaching people the underlying causes of sinus problems and ways to banish them, he wants to help patients avoid losing time and money on ineffective medications and surgery. Visit his Web-site to register for his free course on sinus health. www.HowToGetRidofSinusitis.com