Sinus Massage Techniques That Reduce Congestion
The paranasal sinuses are small, air-filled spaces in your skull. They help filter and moisten the air you breathe and lighten the weight of the skull. The paranasal sinuses also help produce the sound of your voice and provide support for your face and eyes.
Whenever youre sick, the sinuses become obstructed with mucus. This blockage causes congestion and can lead to intense pressure and headaches. While there are nasal sprays and medications to treat symptoms, some simple massage techniques at home can provide you with relief.
How Sinus Massage Helps
Massaging the sinuses is thought to help sinus pain and congestion by relieving pressure and helping the sinus drain out mucus. The gentle pressure and warmth from the hands may also help by increasing blood circulation to the area.
However, not a lot of research has been done on sinus massage. A few smaller studies show promising results, but more research is needed.
In one recent study, facial massage therapy significantly reduced the severity of sinus headaches in 35 women. In another study in male athletes with chronic sinusitis, facial therapeutic massage was shown to significantly reduce facial congestion and facial tenderness compared to the control group who didnt receive a massage.
Drinking Liquids Help Ease Sinus Pain And Loosens Congestion
Staying hydrated keeps your sinuses moist so you feel better, and it also decreases the thickness of sinus mucus so it flows out more easily, Del Signore says.
Everyone is guilty of not drinking enough water, he says, recommending people get from six to eight 8-ounces glasses every day.
Steer clear of too many caffeinated or alcoholic drinks, which can cause dehydration.
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Sinus Trouble: Consider The Causes
Not only can seasonal allergies or chronic allergies impact the sinuses, but humid air can cause a clogged or stuffy feeling in the nose. An infectioneither brief or long-lastingcan also take hold.
Sinusitis ailments are not only a burden for allergy sufferers, they can be a challenge for doctors, too, especially as patients and doctors alike are on high alert for warning signs of a possible COVID-19 infection. Three of the most common causes of sinus symptoms are allergies, viral infections and bacterial infections. But these can be tough to tell apart because of overlapping symptoms.
Why Sinus Pressure Without Congestion Is Unique
It seems like everyone can remember at least one morning where they wake up and just dont feel good. The pressure in their nose paired with the struggle to breathe properly is something we have all experienced at some point.
This issue is known as congestion, and it is that feeling you have when your nose feels blocked. In most cases, you will also experience sinus pressure when you deal with congestion.
Sinus pressure and congestion go hand in hand as congestion is caused by the nasal cavities in your head getting backed up. When these cavities fill up, your sinuses feel the pressure of the added fluid and tend to feel uncomfortable. This is why so often you will see people dealing with both sinus pressure and headaches at the same time.
Just because these two symptoms go hand in hand does not mean that they cant exist in isolation. As we will see, there are many causes of sinus pressure and dizziness that often dont come with added congestion.
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Nasal Saline Washes And Topical Nasal Corticosteroids
Additional treatment options include nasal saline washes, which help move thick secretions from the nasal passages, and topical nasal corticosteroid sprays that reverse inflammation and swelling. The latter also effectively shrink and prevent nasal polyps. Corticosteroid sprays do not get absorbed into the bloodstream and can be used for extended periods without the risk of dependency.
How To Get Rid Of A Sinus Infection In 24 Hours Or Fast
Days of dry weather are coming. The chances to get a sinus infection increases in dry weather. Even a simple cold can turn into a sinus infection. Once you get it, the symptoms will make the days miserable, especially if you have to attend the office. You feel like an outcast among the colleagues if the nose keeps running and sneezing. In this situation, the thing that you want to know the most is how to get rid of a sinus infection fast? But its not always easy to do that.
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Sinus Pressure Causes And Reasons
There are various causes of sinus pressure. A few factors can cause irritation of your nasal passages and bring about symptoms of sinus pressure. Some sinus pressure causes and reasons include:
Sinusitis. Usually referred to as a sinus infection, sinusitis can cause pressure and pain in your sinuses. You should discuss treatment options with your doctor if you suspect youâre dealing with sinusitis . Sinus infection, referred to as sinusitis, is a common health issue, impacting 31 million Americans.
Environmental irritants. Airborne pollutants like irritants that cause allergies could trigger sinus pressure and mucus build-up.
The common cold. All colds arenât the same, but in some cases, they can cause the symptom mucus build-up and this means sinus pressure.
Use Decongestants But Only Temporarily
You can definitely pop some Sudafed tablets or even spritz some Afrin into your nose, but beware: you cant do this forever.
In an acute infection, a decongestant can be useful, but Afrin can become addicting if used for more than a few days and oral decongestants used regularly can have cardiovascular effects, says Dr. Thompson. These are targeted for short-term use.
Also, FYI, patients with high blood pressure shouldnt use these OTC products, and people who are sensitive to stimulants, like caffeine, might have trouble sleeping when using them, per Dr. Takashima.
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How Is Saline Spray Beneficial For Sinus Infections
To be clear, using saline will help soothe irritated sinuses and may help prevent future sinus infections, but it does not treat the infection. Sinus issues are susceptible to changes in the weather, the humidity, and climate. Those who fly frequently should take special care as altitude also affects sinus issues.
Saline will reduce the thick mucus secretions in the sinuses and nose and help wash away particles, allergens, and germs.
Saline sprays are not habit forming and can be used multiple times a day to aid in the healing process and to alleviate symptoms especially if you are prone to chronic sinus infections.
What Are The Complications Of Sinus Headache
In rare cases, complications around the eye area can happen, resulting in the area being swollen and inflamed. This may even affect your vision.
If you have a high fever that persists, discolored nasal discharge, rattling in your chest, or difficulty breathing, see your doctor about these symptoms. While a sinus headache might seem like a harmless health condition, its important to determine its cause.
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How Can I Get Immediate Relief From Sinus Pain: 10 Sinus Pain Home Remedies To Try
Doing one or more of the things below can provide some temporary relief, but dont use it as a substitute for seeing a doctor, especially if its a recurring problem. Things like bacterial sinus infections can get worse over time if not treated with the proper medication.
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Key Differentiators Between Migraines And Sinus Headaches
So, how can you tell whats causing your headache? If youre struggling to identify whether your headache is a migraine or is caused by sinus pressure, the best thing you can do is to seek medical counsel.
However, the two clearest differences are the location of the headache and whether or not youre congested. If you experience the headache pain primarily on one side of your head, you may be more likely to have a migraine.
If youre not congested and have an extremely painful headache, you likely have a migraine. If you are congested and have an extremely painful headache, you may have either a migraine OR a sinus headache.
Another potential indicator is the color of your mucus. Is it clear? If so, you most likely have a migraine. Is it yellowish? If so, your headache is likely caused by sinus pressure.
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Five Ways To Relieve Sinus Pressure
The pain, facial pressure and congestion of sinus infections affect more than 26.9 million Americans roughly 11 percent of adults, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Most sinus infections, also called sinusitis, do not need to be treated with antibiotics, and will usually go away within 7-10 days.
One of the most annoying symptoms is the sinus pressure around the eyes, head and cheeks. Fortunately, there are several home remedies and medications that can help provide relief.
Invest In A Humidifier
Humidifiers add moisture to the air, which may help reduce inflammation and open up your nasal passages. For a humidifier to be the most effective, Abi Hachem says it should be placed as close as possible to you in the same room so it can deliver the humidity into your nasal cavity.
It’s also important to keep your humidifier clean to prevent bacteria and fungi from building up in the tank and being released into the air, potentially causing lung problems. To clean your humidifier, follow the manufacturer’s instructions. The EPA recommends that you empty the tank and dry all surfaces of the humidifier every day.
Allergy Sinusitis And Sinus Headache Resources
There are a number of very good resources available for people suffering from allergies, sinusitis, and sinus headaches:
Inflammation of the four sinus cavities depicted in the above diagram is the root cause of sinusitis.
Nasal Wash: Neti Pots Saline Nasal Spray And More
Many people find sinus relief through a saline nasal wash, but it does require some preparation. You can find a lot of these supplies at most drug stores, including
You can buy a pre-filled container or make your own saline solution.
Nasal Saline Solution Recipe
To make your own nasal saline solution, follow this simple recipe:
- 16 ounces of sterile water
- ½ tsp baking soda
Simply mix the lukewarm, sterile water with the salt. Some people add ½ teaspoon of baking soda to take the sting out of the salt, but this ingredient is optional.
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How To Prevent Sinus Pain
There are also steps you can take to prevent sinus pain. Pay attention to triggers for allergies and nasal irritation and try to reduce or prevent those exposures whenever possible. Common irritants that can cause sinus pain include:
Cigarette smoke: Smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke are common triggers for sinus pain and sinusitis. Quitting or reducing exposure can alleviate symptoms.
Pollution: When you breathe in air pollutants, such as industrial chemicals or paint fumes, they are absorbed by the nose and can lead to irritation of the nose and sinuses.
Allergens: Allergies are a major culprit of sinusitis and sinus pain. Common allergens include pollen, mold, pets, and dust mites. An allergist can give you an allergy test to help identify what’s causing your symptoms so that you can take steps to reduce exposure.
On Either Side Of The Nostrils
Use your fingers to apply gentle pressure to both sides of your nostrils. Your fingers should be at right angles to these points. Keep pressing for a minute to allow the sinuses to drain out this can help prevent inflammation and bring some sinus pressure relief. This pressure point is also good for pain behind the cheeks and helps prevent respiratory illnesses.
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Acupressure And Acupuncture For Sinuses
Acupuncture is used to treat chronic sinus pressure and other symptoms.
Research from 2006 found that about 99 percent of acupuncturists in the United States treat sinus problems. Similarly, the Cleveland Clinic recommends using acupressure to relieve sinus pressure due to allergies.
While more research is needed on using acupressure to treat sinus symptoms, this practice may help improve blood flow, relax muscles, and help mucus drain from the sinuses.
You can do acupressure for sinus symptoms on yourself. It only takes a few minutes.
You can press on the acupressure points or gently rub or rotate your fingers in a circular motion over the area.
You can also get professional acupressure treatment from a certified acupuncturist. Some massage therapists may also use acupressure points.
Here are the main acupressure points for sinus relief and how to find them:
Use Humidifiers Within The Home
Wherever you can, keep your sinuses moist. When they dry out, the pressure feels worse, and you can suffer more symptoms, such as dizziness and headaches. Humidifiers are the easiest and quickest way to keep your sinuses moist throughout the day, especially when you are in the home. They help to add moisture to the air, regardless of the temperatures and humidity outside. If you live in an area known for dry heat, you will want to consider a humidifier for other reasons. They are excellent for keeping the skin moist and supporting the heat of the rest of your body.
Keep the humidifiers running throughout the night. This is often when most people experience drier temperatures and need the help. You can avoid waking up with the feeling that you have been in the sauna.
If you cannot use a humidifier for any reason, you will need to consider your other options to keep your sinuses moist and clear. One of the best options is a nasal saline spray.
Most people will think of the pharmaceutical options, but they are not necessary. You can make your own with just some filtered or pre-boiled water. You will want to make sure the toxins and minerals are removed from the water before using it as a saline spray.
Dont use the saline mixtures within the ears. You can cause damage to your hearing. Only opt for ear saline treatments when used by a trained professional.
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How To Relieve Sinus Pain And Pressure
If your sinus pain is causing you frustration, you will want to find relief as quickly as possible while you recover. Below are several sinus treatments that may help you feel more at ease:5, 6, 7
- Nasal irrigation: If you can still breathe out of your nose, try flushing the mucus with saline water to rid your nasal passage of bacteria. Using saline drops can also keep your nostrils moist and prevent mucus from sticking.
- Nasal Spray: Try a nasal spray that uses saltwater to moisten the nasal passageways and thin mucus.
- Over-the-counter Decongestant: breathing can be a challenge when you are feeling congested. Try TYLENOL® Sinus Pressure and Pain to help alleviate some of your toughest sinus symptoms such as sinus pain, nasal congestion, and headaches.
- Rest: rest is crucial to your bodys healing process
- Hydrate: Water will help flush out toxins from your body and thin your mucus. Avoid alcohol or caffeine, which cause dehydration.
If your symptoms persist or you are still unsure on how to relieve your sinus pain and pressure, consult your doctor for treatments and medications.
Causes Of Sinus Congestion
- Viral Sinus Infection. Part of the common cold. A cold infects the lining of the nose. It also involves the lining of all the sinuses.
- Bacterial Sinus Infection. A problem when the sinus becomes infected with bacteria. . It starts as a viral sinus infection. Main symptoms are increased sinus pain or return of fever. The skin around the eyelids or cheeks may become red or swollen. Thick nasal secretions that last over 14 days may point to a sinus infection. This can occur in younger children.
- Allergic Sinus Reaction. Sinus congestion often occurs with nasal allergies . Sneezing, itchy nose and clear nasal discharge point to this cause.
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Hum Your Way To Sinus Pain Relief
“Some people report that humming for one hour improves sinus pain,” says Das. Researchers in Sweden have found that humming can keep your sinuses clear. How could that be possible? Humming may increase both airflow through your sinuses and the level of nitric oxide in your sinuses. The combination of nitric oxide and airflow may reduce your risk of sinusitis. So if you have a common cold or allergies, want to prevent a sinus infection, and know a happy tune that you don’t mind hearing for an hour, you may want to try a little humming.