How to Thin Sinus Mucus

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Sinus congestion is a buildup of mucus inside the nasal cavities. It can be uncomfortable at best and, if not treated, may spread to the eyes, ears and throat, requiring antibiotics for relief. Untreated sinusitis may develop into a chronic condition. According to research at the Mayo Clinic and Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, several home remedies may help thin mucus sufficiently enough that sinus issues are alleviated without prescription medication.

Things You'll Need

  • Water or juice
  • Humidifier
  • Nasal saline spray
  • Nasal rinse
  • Over-the-counter antihistamine

Drink plenty of fluids. The recommended amount for those suffering from nasal congestion is 6 to 8 oz. of water or fruit juice per hour.

Use a humidifier. Place a cool-mist humidifier next to the bed or in the room where you spend the most time per day.

Take a hot shower. The steam from the shower helps loosen up congestion.

Use a nasal saline spray. The handy spray is economical and effective at adding needed moisture to the dry environment of the congested nose.

Perform a nasal rinse. Twice a day, use a neti pot or bulb syringe to flush the nasal cavities of extra congestion and irritants, such as allergy-inducing pollen, dander or mold spores.

Take an over-the-counter antihistamine. As a last resort before heading to the doctor, try an antihistamine to reduce inflammation in the nasal cavities; less inflammation means easier sinus drainage.

Tips & Warnings

  • Stay away from decongestants---especially nasal sprays---because of their negative side effects. Home remedies such as nasal irrigation and steam baths usually work better and are free of side effects.

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