Wouldn't you like to be able to have healthy sinuses, no post-nasal-drip (PND), without having to be constantly relieving and spending money to get some temporary relief? Most people can obtain that reasonable goal by eliminating the cause(s) of the problem. Does this make sense? That's the objective of the publication being offered at the top of the page. Yet some just want temporary relief of symptoms, thus for them the tips that follow:
Going for the cause of yellow mucus
Chronic allergy irritation and certain foods can be devastating to our sinuses. By now we all should fully understand the obvious: Drugs, by the way of pills, sprays, drops, i.e., relieve symptoms only--they don't cure anything. Yet some are content, as we have already said, to just have a quick symptoms fix. Again, by going to the cause--allergy, food, sinus membrane irritation, etc.--and eliminating them, we can have permanent relief in most cases, feel better and begin to enjoy life again.
What causes it? Is it curable? What is the best remedy? What is it a symptom of?
These are valid questions for which those suffering from post-nasal drip (PND) should have a valid answer. Let's start with a definition and causes:
What is post-nasal drip?
It is simply excessive mucus trickling onto the throat area, from the posterior portion of the nasal cavity. The mucus would have, ordinarily, dripped out of the nostrils. Also excessive drainage from the sinus cavities running directly into the throat is also considered post-nasal drip.
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What are the causes of post-nasal drip?
PND is caused by irritation of the membranes lining the nasal and sinus cavities. The natural reaction of those membranes is to wash away the irritant by producing profuse mucus. Things that can cause nasal membrane irritation are:
- air pollution - smoke, smog, dust
- air dryness
- cold air
- viral infections - "colds," "flu"
Sinus infection - a very common cause of PND, knowing the symptoms of sinus infection could prevent a full infection
Bacterial infection - the mucus thick, usually with pus. It's yellow or green. It can be accompanied by phlegm
- it can be caused by stagnated mucus
a first warning can of mucus held back is sinus pressure
Rhinitis - also known as runny nose, is an irritation and inflammation of the membranes of the nose
- Acid reflux - more specifically, the laryngopharyngeal type
- Birth control pills or pregnancy - due to the elevated level of estrogen hormones present in the body
- Smoking - it dries out the nasal passage membranes causing irritation
- Alcoholic beverages - same reason as previous line
The function of the nasal cavities and the passage membranes is to produce mucus. A healthy body produces between one and two pints of mucus everyday. It is watery and clear and we do not notice it until it thickens and tickles our throats. Mucus maintains those membranes healthy so that the cavities and passages may carry out their protective functions properly. The cilia--a very small one cell organisms with hairlike projections which are part of the membranes--are constantly sweeping and moving mucus and fluids in those areas toward the nose to avoid congestion. Care should be taken to preserve the integrity of those important mini-organs to avoid infection, so called green snot and other sinus issues. An excessive amount of mucus is usually and indication of irritation in the nasal or sinus cavity or an infection.
Rhinitis and post-nasal drip
One of the main causes of PND is rhinitis. Commonly known as runny nose it is an irritation and inflammation of the membrane lining the nose cavity and adjacent passages. It is caused by irritation of that membrane by things such as: allergic reactions to pollens, bacteria, viruses, smog, constant exposure to dust, chemical fumes, etc. and results in the production of excessive amounts of mucus dripping through the nose or the throat area. In the big cities smog can be the main cause of this ailment. Rhinitis has been linked to other disorders such as: insomnia, learning and ear problems. Relief: includes antihistamines, desensitization to the irritant--provided it is organic and that injectable serum can be produced, keeping away as far as possible from the irritant, surgery as last resort.
Nasal Cavity and Upper Respiratory Tract
a - vertebrae, b - esophagus, c - trachea
d - cricoid cartilage, e - laryngopharynx, f -
pharynx, g - nasopharynx, k - tongue,
l - hard palate,
o - superior turbinate,
p - middle turbinate, q - inferior turbinate
Allergies and post-nasal-drip
During the plants growing season--April through September--possibly the single most common cause of post-nasal drip is allergy to airborne pollens. Most people have allergies, in various degrees, to certain pollens, but sometimes confused them with a cold. When the sensitivity to them is high then post-nasal drip, among other symptoms, can become an issue. Relieving rhinitis caused by allergies includes: lessening exposure to allergens, taking antihistamines, desensitization of the person to the allergens. There is another source of allergens that can play havoc with many people's noses, throats, eyes, breathing. It is: house dust. Unfortunately, many people suffering from PND don't know the allergic effect house dust can have. Relief: taking some antihistamines for temporary cases, allergy desensitizing injections for the long run. Sinus pressure is often a symptom of allergic reaction. To know whether you are allergic to house dust, for instance, you can do a preliminary test by getting down close to the carpet or a dusty area in the house and taking a good sniff. If you are allergic to the dust you will know it right away. Allergies can be the cause of sinus pressure if the mucus doe not flow freely.
Sinus infection-sinusitis- and the post nasal drip connection
Another common post-nasal drip cause is sinusitis, which may start with sinus pressure. It's good to know, therefore, a quick way to eliminate sinus pressure before it fosters other disorders. Technically, sinusitis is an infection or inflammation of the membranes lining the sinuses. Often it begins with a "cold," "flu" or allergic attack. This irritates those membranes and mucus production increases dramatically. The sinus membranes swell to wash away the irritant. If the swelling continues it will block the small openings to the sinuses (called ostia) and mucus and air won't flow into the nasal cavities. Sinus pressure builds up with possible pain. The sinuses become excellent breeding ground for bacteria and an infection follows often accompanied by headache. If this situation is allowed to become a chronic condition polyps or other diseases of the breathing organs could develop. This is not good for the rest of the respiratory organs. Since the infected mucus can infect other organs, too, and produce phlegm and other unpleasant symptoms like pain in the sinus areas or even bronchitis. Knowing some of the casues of sinus pressure can be very beneficial.
A viral infection producing the nasal irritation that in turn is producing the PND would not be stopped with an antibiotic. They usually last a short time. A bacterial infection, on the other hand, can be successfully addressed with antibiotics. Infections in the upper respiratory tract: "colds," etc., are usually viral; while those in the lower respiratory system are bacterial.
Post-nasal-drip temporary relief
- If a virus is involved the immune system itself should take care of it. Give it a couple of days or so. The initial stage produces a watery, clear mucus, with much body discomfort. Antibiotics won't touch it
Drink lots of fluids
- plain water
- herbal tea
- frsh fruit juices
- but not milk
If allergies are suspected an OTC antihistamine should be helpful to relieve the symptoms
- talk to your pharmacist
try to ascertain the allergen(s) involved
- get close to the suspected source and take a good sniff
evaluate the reaction
- itchy eyes
- difficulty in breathing, etc.
- consider leaving out mucus producing foods
- If you have a bad chronic condition consider seeing an allergy specialist
- Rest, relax as much as possible
If the virus is detected at the outset herb EB will very likely stop it. Three Steps to Sinus and Mucus Relief has very valuable information on cure and permanent prevention of sinus problems which apply to post-nasal-drip
- If after a week the problem continues it probably is not caused by a virus, but by a bacterial infection. An antibiotic will probably be needed. Only your physician can prescribe it. If not addressed the infection and discomfort will probably linger for weeks
- On the other hand if this is a recurring problem relating to seasonal plants, then allergies are very likely the culprit. Depending on the severity of the PND, you would have to decide whether to consult an allergy specialist, for tests and possible allergy shots; to desensitize the body to that allergen.
- You should be aware that chronic post-nasal drip's irritation of the nasal membranes can cause polyps over time and/or throat infection
- In many cases this condition is preventable and changing some foods could be the key to permanent relief
Post-nasal-drip permanent relief
As with many other sinus issues PND can be beaten most of the time by following a rather simple protocol, which includes:
Some foods are just not good for permanent relief for sinus problems
- Herbals to: (a) boost the immune system regularly; (b) be taken at the first sign of an occasional recurrence
Acupressure: to boost the immune system also and to promote general sinus health
- Chiropractic. This is a very interesting and unknown therapeutic alternative which can be of enormous value to sinus and nasal issue sufferers
Fasting on a regular basis has been practiced for millennia to boost the immune system and for concentrating the body's energy into curing itself
Keeping the sinuses clear 24-7 is basic for permanent relief using acupressure, steam rinse, or a modern devise click
Free flow of nerve energy to all respiratory organs is essential--for more information on this click
Those five items are covered well in Three Steps to Sinus and Mucus Relief. Those who have tried this approach agree on one thing. It works.