Post nasal drip is a condition characterized by the sensation of constant mucus dripping from the nose through the back of the throat. This can result in various symptoms, depending on affected structures in the head and neck.
Sore throat is commonly reported in patients with post nasal drip. This is a result of the mucus dripping on the same spot on the back of the throat while the patient is asleep at night. By the time the patient awakens, the throat is inflamed from the constant irritation during sleep and this manifests as a sore throat.
A constant cough is another symptom displayed by those affected with post nasal drip. This is a result of the mucus dripping down and irritating the back of the throat and airways, resulting in a chronic cough. The irritation is usually described as a “tickling” sensation.
Constant Swallowing/Clearing of the Throat
The constant clearing of the throat is another symptom resulting from the mucus dripping down the back of the throat from the nose. It acts as a source of irritation, and the patient will attempt to clear the throat and rid himself of the offending irritant. The patient will also tend to swallow more than usual in another way to get rid of the mucus in the throat.
The mucus dripping out of the nose can also find its way onto the tongue. This can result in a chronic unpleasant taste in the mouth that is difficult to get rid of.
Patients with post nasal drip also often suffer from nausea. This is a result of the mucus being swallowed or dripping down into the esophagus and ending up in the stomach. When excess amounts of mucus builds up in the stomach, nausea can result. If it continues, vomiting can result.
REFERENCES & RESOURCES
- “Middleton’s Allergy: Principles and Practice, 7th Edition;” Adkinson; 2008
- National Institutes of Health: Nasal Discharge