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How to Get Rid of a Stuffy Nose Fast

Updated on November 19, 2012

Stuffy Nose Relief

Suffering from the common cold, influenza, and cough comes with their own nuisances, but the discomfort doesn’t end when these conditions are treated. In some cases, sufferers get a secondary infection and experience a stuffy nose. Nasal congestion, the other term for stuffy nose, refers to the condition where the nasal passages swell up, causing the flow of air in and out of the nose to be obstructed. This makes it hard to breathe and results to sleepless nights. The good news is that there are home remedies that can help you breathe better and clear your nasal passages. Read on and learn how to get rid of a stuffy nose using home remedies and over-the-counter treatments.

What Causes a Stuffy Nose?

As mentioned earlier, a stuffy nose usually occurs after suffering from colds, cough, or the flu. Common irritants such as dust, dirt, and smoke can also cause a stuffy nose. This is because upon exposure to these irritants, more mucus is produced to trap and prevent them from reaching your lungs. Your stuffy nose can also be due to allergic reactions to airborne substances.

How to Get Rid of a Stuffy Nose Fast

1. Stay hydrated.

The easiest thing you can do when you are suffering from a stuffy nose is to drink plenty of fluids and stay hydrated. This thins out the mucus, making it easier to blow them out of your nose. If you are looking for something with a little taste, you can try watered-down juice and sports drinks.

2. Try saline nasal drops.

Saline nasal drops offer fast relief for those who suffer from colds. There are over-the-counter nasal drops but you can also easily make one at home. Just mix a couple of teaspoons of non-iodized salt with previously boiled water. Put the solution in a bulb syringe and place 2-4 drops in each nostril. Saltwater helps flush out mucus and kill bacteria.

3. Steam your face.

Pour boiled water in a bowl then position your head so that the steam goes up directly to your face. The steam will allow you to breathe easier. Do this four times a day or as often as necessary. You can also try a hot shower which works just as well.

4. Use decongestants.

The most common medication used to get rid of a stuffy nose is a decongestant. This works by reducing the inflammation of your nasal passages, allowing mucus to flow out easily. Be careful though, as too much use of decongestants can do more harm than good. It is usually suggested to limit use of decongestants to 3 days only. Overuse can lead to further inflammation of the nasal passages and blood vessels.

5. Try antihistamines.

If your stuffy nose is caused by allergies, using antihistamines can help relieve the symptoms. It is best to check with your doctor first before using antihistamines to make sure that your stuffy nose is due to an allergic reaction.

6. Install a humidifier.

You might notice that stuffy nose is more common during the winter. This is because the cold air and low humidity causes you to become more susceptible to infection. To increase moisture, consider installing a humidifier in your home. Just make sure that you clean it regularly to prevent mold and bacteria buildup.

7. Consult your doctor.

A stuffy nose might seem like a small problem which doesn’t require too much concern. However, if your stuffy nose is accompanied by fever and other symptoms, seek medical attention immediately. In rare instances, a stuffy nose is a sign of a more serious health disease such as pneumonia. Visit your doctor for proper diagnosis and ask help on how to get rid of a stuffy nose fast.


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    • Carson McQueen profile image

      Carson McQueen 4 years ago from Philippines

      No problem. Glad you liked it!

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 4 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Very useful hub. Stuffy nose is so irritating, much more than fever. You have suggested some very good home remedies for it, and I am sure they will be very effective.

      Thanks for sharing.