3 Ways To Treat Sinusitis Without Drugs
Sinusitis, which is caused by a bacterial or viral infection, can be debilitating and leave you unable to focus at work or enjoy your leisure time. Typical symptoms such as headache, facial pain and stuffiness occur when your sinuses become inflamed, so drug treatments focus on reducing inflammation and killing off bacteria. However, antibiotics and decongestants come with a range of side effects--such as abdominal upset and headaches--that more and more patients are keen to avoid. There are alternative treatments for you to try, but it is advisable to see your GP if you develop a fever or if your sinusitis lasts for more than a couple of weeks. Here's an overview of three drug-free treatment options:
Saline Nasal Washes
Using a saline solution to rinse out your sinuses can flush out trapped mucus, which can relieve pain and make your nasal passages less hospitable to bacteria. You can use a neti pot, which is like a small teapot, to wash out your sinuses by filling it with 200ml of warm distilled water and ¼ teaspoon of non-iodised salt. Simply insert the spout of the neti pot into your right nostril, turn your head to the left until it's parallel with the ground and allow the salt water to pass through your nasal passages and drip out of your left nostril. Repeat this process with your other nostril and give your nose a gentle blow to dry it out. You can use a neti pot a few times a day, but don't be tempted to add more salt as this can irritate the delicate tissue in your nose.
Acupuncture is derived from ancient Chinese medicine and is available in some NHS health centres and private alternative health practices, such as the Acupuncture School in Toronto. It's believed that when your body's energy, known as Qi, is out of balance you are more likely to experience physical illnesses, so practitioners use fine needles to stimulate nerve endings in your body to restore balance. Acupuncture is painless and when used to treat sinusitis, the focus is on strengthening your respiratory system. Your practitioner will promote the clearance of mucus by regulating the energy flow in your nasal passages, and they may also prescribe herbs known to work on the respiratory system for you to use between acupuncture sessions.
Natural nasal sprays combine saline with essential oils believed to support the health of your nasal passages. They are ideal if you struggle to cope with the volume of fluid that passes through your nose when you use a neti pot or if you want to add a natural antibacterial component to your treatment regime. You can purchase natural nasal sprays from health shops and online. They often contain clove oil or wild oregano oil, which are considered anti-inflammatory and antibacterial.
Like most health problems, sinusitis is easier to treat when addressed promptly. So, if you want to avoid using prescription or over-the-counter drugs, give these alternative treatments a try as soon as you notice any symptoms of sinusitis.