We’ve all been there. The snuffy nose that runs like a faucet. Coupled with pain and pressure in the face.
Yep. Sinus infections.
And sinus infections are RAMPANT this time of year.
I used to get two sinus infections a year — one in the winter and one in the summer when my seasonal allergies went berserk.
But then I decided I would really figure out how to prevent them. Using evidence-based and integrative strategies. And voila! Sinus infections no more!
So how do you prevent sinus infections?
Keep reading for my top tips.
1. Avoid Breathing Dry Air
You may be thinking, “Yeah, right. How do I do that in the winter?”
Great question because the combo of cold air and artificial heating is a recipe for dryness.
There are a few things you can do.
One is to use a humidifier, especially while you’re sleeping. These relatively inexpensive devices can be a godsend. They work by infusing the air with moisture, which makes things much more comfortable for your nasal passages and sinuses.
Another is to use saline nasal rinses. You can read more about those here.
2. Savor a Cup of Tea
This is something I can completely get behind.
Tea, particularly of the green variety, has been shown to prevent sinus infections. It is thought the cathechins are responsible for this effect.
If you are new to tea, rest assured green tea tastes delicious. However, how you steep the tea is incredibly important. If you steep green tea for too long or at too high a temperature, it will taste bitter and honestly unpleasant. Be sure to follow steeping instructions to ensure your cup tastes great.
3. Stay Away from Smoke and Pollution
Cigarette smoke is not only bad for your lungs — the smoke also irritates your nasal and sinus membranes.
When your nasal and sinus membranes are irritated, you are much more likely to get a sinus infection.
High pollution levels also have the same effect. So consider exercising indoors when the air quality is subpar or investing in an air purifier. Air purifiers are not cheap, but can make a huge difference if you live in an area with pollution.
4. Avoid Your Allergens
When you are exposed to allergens, you often cause inflammation of the nasal and sinus membranes.
If you cannot avoid your allergens, at the very least treat your symptoms.
5. Wash Your Hands . . . Now and Often
Wash your hands. Right now.
If you come into contact with people with colds or other infections, you increase your risk of illness.
The best way to prevent cold transmission is by hand washing. Now and often.
Keep Yourself Healthy & Happy
I’m a true believer in the old adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” So if you suffer from sinus infections, try these tips to keep you (and your sinuses) healthy and happy.