Winter sinus pain, pressure, congestion or dryness? We’ve got you covered!
Its that time again, cold and dry, and we have plenty of people coming in complaining of sinus symptoms, here’s the low down on what to try before going the route of decongestants and antibiotics.
Here Are Our Top 5 Natural Sinus Remedies & Recommendations for Sinus Relief:
- Alter your diet to accommodate the season. Try eating foods that are more warming and moistening. Soups and stews, whole grains, beans, cooked fruit dishes (cooked pears and apples with honey added), small quantities of animal foods if you desire. Take it easy on dairy foods, especially cheeses, milk, ice cream, etc because they promote mucous production. Also reduce baked goods especially white flour goods, they are further drying, and can agitate allergic sinus issues. Sugar, artificial sweeteners, and artificial food additives are never a good thing. Last but certainly not least is water; drink plenty of it!
- Cleanse your sinuses daily. Some people like using a Neti Pot, others saline applicators, some just like to get water in their sinuses during their shower. Whichever method works for you is fine, just do it daily. Neti salt, Alkalol (in drug stores), colloidal silver (for infections), can all be added in small amounts to help with the cleansing process.
- Moisten your sinus passages before bed. This can be done in a variety of ways using one or all. Home heat in the winter can be dry and harsh, and fireplaces make it even worse. If you don’t have a system humidifier, get a bedroom cool mist humidifier (Homedics etc) and run it all night. Wet towels placed on old radiators can help somewhat also. Get some pure sesame oil in health food store and place 2-3 drops in each nostril before bed, while lying on your back. Some people like to use aromatic herbs (eucalyptus, chamomile…) in a simmering water solution and inhale with a towel over their heads (careful not too get to close).
- Support your Immune System. A winter dose of vitamin D (2-3000 I.U’s) and vitamin C (2000 MG’s) can be useful along with certain herbs for longer term use like the Chinese herb astragalus (taken as directed). If you are already dealing with an active infection there are many western herbs(ecchinacea, goldenseal, olive leaf, oregano oil…) and very specific Chinese herb combinations(gan mao ling, pe min kan, bi yian pian…) that can be instrumental in overcoming illness. The dietary recommendations above are key along with regular exercise for keeping the immune system fine tuned, along with covering the head and neck in cold windy weather.
- Alternatives that help. We find that with stubborn or advanced cases, acupuncture and acupressure techniques can be very effective for sinus infections, congestion, and upper respiratory infections in general. Sometimes, as we are applying the needles the person’s sinuses begin draining for the first time in weeks! We will often utilize cupping to mobilize and focus the immune system and help the accompanying lung congestion to dissipate.
Feel free to contact us if you have any questions on the above or need to schedule an appointment, and the best of luck in better health! Dr. Chuck
Birch Hill Natural Medicine 516-676-4267