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Cold and Flu Center

How to Unblock the Nose

author image Jonathan Croswell
Jonathan Croswell has spent more than five years writing and editing for a number of newspapers and online publications, including the "Omaha World-Herald" and "New York Newsday." Croswell received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Nebraska and is currently pursuing a Master's of Health and Exercise Science at Portland State University.
How to Unblock the Nose
Allergies and illness can cause mucus blockages in the nose. Photo Credit Human nose macro shot image by Gleb Semenjuk from Fotolia.com

A stuffy nose can develop as a result of many things, including allergies or illness. Mucus buildup in the nasal cavity can cut off airflow through the nose entirely, and sometimes it can cause unpleasant pressure on your sinuses that can be distracting or create headaches. Treating your nose blockage can allow you to breathe clearly even at the worst point in your illness.

Step 1

Take bromelain either as a supplement or through pineapple, where the enzyme is abundant. Bromelain breaks down mucus and fights infections in your body while relieving the symptoms of a clogged nasal cavity. TheHealthierLife.co.uk recommends taking about 1,500mg of bromelain daily to relieve sinus problems.

Step 2

Take three 1g doses of vitamin C daily to strengthen your immune system and minimize allergic reactions. Both of these can contribute to mucus blockages and clogged sinuses. This dosage is recommended by TheHealthierLife.co.uk.

Step 3

Use zinc supplements to attack the common cold virus while boosting your immune system. Zinc can also interact with your body's chemicals to aid the reduction of pain and inflammation. TheHealthierLife.co.uk advises taking 15mg zinc supplements three times daily.

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Step 4

Use a lukewarm saltwater mixture to improve your clogged nose's condition. Mix 1/2 tsp. salt into 4 oz. warm water, then hold a small amount of water in your hand and inhale a small amount of the fluid to help break up the mucus blockage and clear sinuses. MotherNature.com recommends using this treatment as needed up to three times each hour.

Step 5

Apply a hot water bottle or hot compress to your nose and forehead to warm the sinus cavity and encourage the flow of mucus. MotherNature.com instructs users of this method to hold the item against their nose until the pain subsides.

Step 6

Try over-the-counter medications to relieve your sinus problems with natural remedies fail you. Antihistamines like Claritin and Zyrtec can calm the effects of your allergies and can alleviate the pressure and blockage in your nose. Decongestants are used to treat clogged noses related to colds and the flu. They work in a similar way to antihistamines by relieving the symptoms of illness, but they won't affect the illness itself. Corticosteroids are powerful decongestants delivered to the sinus through a nasal spray. It contains a steroid to boost the strength of the drug's decongesting power. All of these items are available in over-the-counter and prescription medicine dosages.

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