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Winter is Coming...

With cold and flu season finally in full swing, many of us are beginning to suffer from head colds, sinus pressure, and congestion. Winter is really here!

So What Causes Clogged Sinuses Anyway?

Your nasal mucosa is extremely sensitive. Many factors can cause irritation to that layer of mucosa which leads to an increase of blood flow in the lining, which results in that clogged, congested feeling. There are a few common reasons why you might feel like someone stuffed a cotton ball in your nose!

Common Allergies– You can suffer with these at any time of year, not just spring or fall. They can be caused by outdoor irritants such as pollen, grass, and trees, or by indoor irritants such as pets, dust, and mold.
Weather changes– Nasal tissues can become inflamed from harsh dryness. For example, air from indoor heating or air conditioning.
Deviated Septum– The septum is a partition that separates the left and right nasal cavities. If it leans over to one side, it will decrease the efficiency of air flow.
Inefficient breathing – I find that many of us are naturally breathing through our mouth and not our nose. Our nasal cavity needs a constant influx of air to keep passages clear. 
Sinus Infections– Though it’s the most frequent cause of nasal irritation, many people mistake a sinus infection for a cold. If congestion lasts more than 10 days, you may have a sinus infection.     
Medication Overuse– If you use nasal decongestants on the regular, they could be doing you more harm than good. Your nose will begin to rely on the medication and stop healing on its own.  

 

Essential Oils to Clear Sinuses

Different medications can be used to treat a variety of these sinus issues, but then you can run the risk of overuse. Luckily, there are several essential oils that can be used as an alternative to these harsh medications. Essential oils can clear sinuses and help you relieve that annoying feeling. Not only can you use essential oils to clear sinuses, they can often treat the source of the problem, such as allergies and sinus infections.

A drop of  eucalyptus, peppermint, and/or lemon around the forehead and underneath the chin are great for combating sinus congestion and colds.

Peppermint: Peppermint essential oil is commonly used to relieve sinus congestion and pressure. It also can help with headache pain that can come from sinus pressure with weather changes. Peppermint essential oil has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiseptic properties that penetrate the nasal lining for rapid relief when inhaled through a nebulizing essential oil diffuser.

Eucalyptus: This essential oil is strong and pungent. It has a minty quality and has been a key ingredient in cough drops and syrups for many years. Eucalyptus essential oil has antibacterial, antispasmodic, and antiviral properties which help open airways and relieve congestion naturally. It can also help tame down mucus production while killing the germs that cause illness.

Lemon: Lemon is known for its cleansing properties, which extend to the immune system, too. Because of its high concentration of vitamin C, lemon oil boosts the immune system and has antiviral and antibacterial properties as well. Additionally, the oil supports the lymphatic and respiratory systems as it breaks down mucus to relieve congestion.

***doTERRA is a great essential oil product that is able to be digested. Combating sinus issues from the outside and the inside may help to speed up the healing process.

Other Remedies

Chiropractic: Some light cranial work, sinus massage, and lymphatic massage along the jaw and front of the neck can help the lymphatic system push out congestion in the nose and throat.  Also, a light upper neck adjustment can help increase your nervous system to boost that immunity!

Supplement: I highly recommend taking a Immunomax chewable by Nutritional Frontiers. (A tad on the chalky side) but getting a boost of Vitamin C, Vitamin D3, and Black Elderberry works magically!

 

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