The sun is bright and weather is warm but still people are suffering with sniffles and nasal congestion due to the so called “pollen vortex.”
Doctors recommend clearing the nasal passages of irritants and to help decrease nasal congestion. This is best done with some sort of a normal saline formulation which can be purchased in pharmacies or natural health stores. Using too much salt can cause an excessive dryness to the nasal tissue and possibly increasing the risk of nasal bleeding, too little can cause the water to be absorbed and increasing congestion. That is why a normal saline mix is preferred.
Certain essential oils can be nose openers. Think about the vapor rub that your mom put on your chest when you sick as a child. Menthol or eucalyptol essential oils can be effective at opening nasal passages and leaving you feeling refreshed.
In previous times, put a few drops of eucalyptol or menthol essential oil in a bowl of hot water and breathe in the vapors was a common practice, however the risk of burning to the face and eyes was a deterrent. Even better today is to try a saline spray that has essential oils added to it, such as Dr. Neuzil’s Irrigator.
The oils have an additional benefit by moisturizing the nasal passages that may become “dried out” after using an over-the-counter decongestant or hypertonic nasal spray or nasal flush.
“A lack of moisture in your nose can cause other problems,” said Ed Neuzil, ARNP, PhD and owner of the Allergy, Sinus and Asthma Family Health Center in Central Florida. “Ideally, you want your nasal passages to be moist without having a runny nose.”