Sinuses are small cavities located within the bones of the face that are connected to your nasal cavity (or the inside of your nose). They are lined with a mucous membrane that is responsible for secreting mucus that acts as a trap for dust, germs and other particles in the air which might otherwise cause illness.
The sinus lining can swell due to allergies or an infection. This inflammation results in additional pressure across the entire face including cheeks, above the eyes, and especially the nose, causing pain and tenderness in those areas.
Various home remedies can aid in reducing sinus pressure quickly – but if these don’t work, it’s always advisable to consult an ENT Specialist in Singapore.
While some OTC (over the counter) medications can help reduce symptoms, here’s a list of 8 highly recommended natural remedies that have also proven to be effective:
1. Saline Nasal Spray
A perfect homemade remedy for cleansing blocked nasal cavities! The saline solution contains salt that helps increase moisture in your nose and relieves pressure in the sinuses.
- Clean Water: 1/4th pint
- Salt: 1/4th tsp (teaspoon)
- Baking Soda: 1/4th tsp
- Thoroughly mix all the ingredients
- Sniffing: Holding one nostril at a time, sniff this solution from cupped palms
- Spray Bottle: Pour this solution into a spray bottle (ensuring that it’s completely sanitized), then insert the pointed spout into one of the nostrils and spray. Repeat this process around 3 times a day.
2. Neti Pot
A neti pot is a small-sized pot with a very long nozzle. It’s a great way to cleanse your nose.
- Sanitize your hands (wash them for at least 20 seconds with soap)
- Fill the neti pot with sterilized (germ-free) water
- Lean over a hand basin or washbasin and tilt your head to the left side
- Your right nostrils will be on top, slowly insert the neti pot nozzle into it
- Continue breathing via your mouth
- Dispense water slowly into the top-facing nostril
- At this point, all the rotten bacteria, pollen, and other dirt will be flushed out of the other nostril
- Repeat this process with other (left) nostrils on top
Take note that to prepare sterilized water, you can boil water and let it cool. Alternatively, you can sterile or distilled water from any drugstore.
3. Inhaling Water Steam
Steam inhalation helps relieve sinus pressure by thinning out the mucus that might have thickened over time, helping to open up the passages in the nose.
- Pour boiling water in a large or medium-sized container
- Carefully, bend over the container with a clean towel covering your face and the container
- Breathe through the nose in that position for up to one minute
- Come up, and repeat this process for 5-10 times
4. Working On The Pressure Points – Acupressure
Though not proven by science, according to traditional Chinese medicine, applying considerable pressure to specific points on the body can help relieve sinus pressure or rather ease some symptoms.
You could either do it yourself at home or go to a professional practitioner.
- Form a cup shape with your hands by linking your fingers together
- Use your linked hands to cradle the back of the head – exactly where your skull and neck join
- Open both the thumbs and rest them on the inward curves of the spine
- With the help of thumb pressure, slowly massage the area in small circles
- At the same time, relax and breathe deeply
- This process should not be done for more than 5 seconds at one go
You can also use your fingertips to massage your cheeks and nose to help release some pressure.
Do note that the entire massaging process should be firm, but gentle.
5. Hydrate Your Body
Increasing your intake of different types of nutritious fluids throughout the day will help reduce blockage in your sinuses.
Suggested fluids include water, seasonal fruit juices, soups, and herbal tea.
6. Essential oils
Various types of essential oils (natural oils derived from plants) can help relieve sinus pressure.
One of the recommended oils is Menthol Oil that supposedly clears the nasal passage efficiently though there is no scientific proof of it.
- You can add a few drops of the essential oil to water and inhale through the water steam method (as mentioned above)
However, take note that you should always buy essential oils from a trusted source.
7. Lukewarm washcloth treatment
This is one of the easiest ways to clear your nasal passages.
- Soak a thoroughly washed towel or a washcloth in lukewarm water
- Wring out the excess water
- Put the folded cloth over your face covering your cheeks and nose for a few minutes
8. Just relax
A break in your daily routine is a must when you’re suffering from sinus pressure. This will aid you in a speedy recovery.
You can also consider engaging in activities that promote relaxation including yoga, meditation, and exercise.
Sinus pressure symptoms can cause you a great deal of pain and discomfort. In addition to relying on traditional treatment methods such as decongestants and pain relievers, natural home remedies can also help boost your recovery. However, if the infection is severe, home remedies may not show significant results.
Therefore, if you continue to experience sinus pressure symptoms for more than 3 weeks or if they worsen gradually, consult an ENT specialist as soon as you can.