Blocked nose: Causes and remedies

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Blocked nose: Causes and remedies
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Who hasn’t suffered from an annoying blocked nose at some point this year?  Everyone gets a blocked nose, especially when the weather has turned a tad cold or when you are feeling run down.  In this article we’ll look at why your nose can get blocked and how you can use some natural remedies to unblock your nasal passages and feel on top form again! 

Why do we get a blocked nose?

We can often get a blocked nose when the weather is bad, if you suffer from allergies and during the winter months. The situation is just as disagreeable for the suffer as it is for those who are around them. A runny nose can have a number of origins however here are three main ones that you should look out for.

1) A physical problem

Firstly your nose can be blocked due to a physical problem.  Your septum may have deviated from the left to the right.  This can often lead to a circulation problem in the nose.  An accident or a malformed nose at birth can also cause a problem with circulation. According to some clinical studies, 80% of the population suffer from these phenomenons, without even knowing about it

If you are often bothered by just one nostril being blocked, although you are not ill or overly producing mucus, then you have a nose malformation.  Get in touch with a ENT specialist who will be able to give you further advice.

However the only effective and long-term solution will be surgery. 

© Pixabay


Your nose can also be blocked due to the swelling of the walls of your nasal cavity.  The swelling blocks your nostrils due to an infection or an irritation.  This can arise due to an allergy or when you breath in irritant products (often chemicals).

So that you can unblock your nose, a doctor can prescribe you a treatment which can reduce the swelling of your veins in your nose.  The air can eventually pass through and you can once again breath normally.

During an allergy,in particular, your nose will also produce more liquid which will help to get rid of the allergen agents (hay fever).  The mucus doesn’t necessarily block your air ways as the liquid mucus flows very quickly.

Overproduction of mucus

During a cold or flu, glands that produce nasal mucus are in turmoil.   They produce very large quantities of mucus, much more than we can swallow.  Over produced mucus then builds up in our nasal cavities and the surplus runs from our nose.

When a large quantity of fluid is produced, it is common to see it pick up dust which helps to dry out the mucus and can block our breathing.  It is important to make sure that the mucus is as liquid as possible so that it can continue to run.  It will only last as long as the infection.

You can use decongestant tablets and sprays that will help to keep the mucus in a liquid form so that it can be evacuated more easily.

You can also read: Natural cough remedies – 8 options to choose from

Natural remedies for unblocking your nose

There are a number of natural solutions that can help to unblock your nose.  Some will suit you better than other, so here is a selection of 3 natural remedies that can help you breath more easily.

If symptoms persist or worsen make sure you contact your doctor. 

Essential oils

  • In a bowl of very hot water add  2 drops of Eucalyptus essential oil.  Place your head over the bowl and cover your head with a towel.  Breath in the steam deeply for about 5 minutes.
  • Add 5 drops of Niaouli essential oil onto a tissue and breath into to 4 to 6 times per day.

Be careful when using essential oils as some people should not use these natural products as it presents a risk.  (Young children, pregnant women and breastfeeding women can be affected)

© Abeldomi / Pixabay

Hot water compress

Steam and heat are naturally effective at unblocking your nasal cavities when they are blocked.  Lie down and place a hot water compress onto your sinuses for 5 to 10 minutes.  Repeat this process 2 to 3 times per day and particularly before you go to bed.

Sea water

Sea water is recognized for its decongestant properties.  Find yourself some salt water spray from your pharmacy.  Inject the spray into each nostril, between 3 to 5 times per day and then blow your nose.


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