“A runny nose is great!”, said no one, ever. Excess nasal discharge and drainage (lovely), which can run the gamut from thin and clear to thick green or yellow mucus, is far from a nice image and even more annoying to experience, often resulting in turning the delicate skin around our noses raw from all the blowing, not to mention having to wash our hands every time we do it in order to try and avoid spreading the germs! Brilliant.
On the other hand, a runny nose could be considered a beautiful example of the inner workings of our remarkable human biology, where mucus is created in order to help flush your body of foreign objects like allergens and germs, contributing to an intricate ecosystem fine tuned over millions of years and for which we should be grateful. Too much? Yeah, too much.What Causes A Runny Nose And How To Help Prevent It
Anyway, the causes of a runny nose will usually be cold weather, allergies or a cold or flu (here’s how to tell the difference!). Since it’s one of your body’s great defenses, focusing on prevention, or on treating the underlying cause of the runny nose if it’s too late to prevent, should be your first priority. So make sure you keep your face well protected when you brave the elements, try to avoid any known allergens as much as possible, and of course, wash your hands as often as you can, since that is your first line of defense to help prevent catching a cold or the flu. If you already have a dreaded bug, we have plenty of home remedies you can find on our blog, and of course, our Cold-EEZE products to help you get well faster!Natural Runny Nose Remedies
That said, a runny nose can be incredibly cumbersome. And luckily, there are a number of ways that we found to help “assist,” if you will, the whole “flushing out” process, or curb the more intrusive effects of the runny nose. We’re sure you’ll find the perfect runny nose remedy for you here.
Blowing your nose is, of course, the most obvious solution. But it can only go so far if your nose will not stop leaking! If it’s a bit more moderate, we’d recommend trying to blow at the sink with water as often as possible, to avoid irritating and hurting the skin around your nose. Plus, it makes it easier to wash your hands after to help stop the spreading, so, score.
- Warm Fluids
Drinking plenty of warm fluids, like tea or clear chicken broth, will help thin out the mucus and has been shown in a study to improve symptoms of runny nose as well as cough, sneezing, sore throat, chilliness and tiredness! It will also provide a nice, cozy effect and is beneficial for the overall proper hydration and functioning of your body, which will help you get rid of the underlying cause of that runny nose all the faster. We have plenty of recipes for teas and soups on our blog!
- Spicy Foods
Apart from being delicious, spicy foods have been used for centuries for their health benefits. In this case, foods like garlic, which contain a mild decongestant, and hot peppers, which contain capsaicin, may help thin the mucus and thus aid in its drainage. So, pass the Sriracha.
No better excuse to steam it up because it’s an excellent way to loosen the mucus, keep the nasal passages nice and moist and help drain the sinuses. You can take a hot bath or steamy shower, inhale over a bowl of boiling water with a towel over your head (carefully!) or use a steam inhaler machine. Some people like to add eucalyptus oil, ginger or thyme to their steam too.
Similarly, using a humidifier to add moisture back into your environment will help keep those nasal passages nice and moist (who doesn’t love that word? LOL) and help your nose drain faster and stop that runny nose sooner.
A warm compress placed over your nose and forehead can help relieve sinus pressure, which in turn will help drain your sinuses. A gentle massage in the area between your nose and eyes, as well as the area above and in between your eyebrows, and surprisingly, your earlobes, can also help relieve sinus pressure and improve the drainage situation. Use the warm compress for the massage to combine the benefits.
The famous saline. Saline can be extremely helpful in thinning the mucous and helping to soothe the membranes. You can use a syringe, a neti pot, nasal spray or other nasal irrigation technique. Sounds gross, but it can seriously help.
If you just can’t stand the constant leaking, try balling up a couple of small pieces of tissue and gently placing them in the opening of your nostrils. That way they can absorb some of the mucus without your having to blow so much. Of course, this pro tip is recommended for use at home 😉
What are your favorite methods of relieving a runny nose?Note: According to WebMD, you should call your doctor if:
- Your symptoms last more than 10 days.
- You have a high fever.
- Your nasal discharge is yellow and green and is accompanied by sinus pain or fever. This may be a sign of a bacterial infection.
- You have blood in your nasal discharge or a persistent clear discharge after a head injury.