Guide to Sinus Infection Home Remedies

Sinus Infection Home Remedies explains the condition of sinusitis, symptoms, remedies, and tips.

sinus infection location
Anatomic Location of the Human Sinuses

What is a Sinus Infection?

Sinusitis, more commonly known as simply a sinus infection, is a condition that can suddenly flare up or recur for months and sometimes years. It occurs when the sinuses, small air-filled cavities located between the eyes and nose and cheeks and forehead area, are lined with a membrane that is lubricated with mucus. There is a tube that runs from the nose to the sinus and when that space becomes blocked, the sinuses become inflamed, and infection can result.

The most common causes of troublesome sinus conditions are weather changes, air-conditioning, or an overheated room. It may even be something as inconsequential as the dust in one's mustache.

What are symptoms of a Sinus Infection?

The symptoms of a sinus attack are often similar to those that accompany a cold or seasonal allergies--stuffed or runny nose, headache, congestion. In fact, you may have a sinus infection along with a cold, allergies, or a headache. It can sometimes include pain in the cheeks, forehead, or bridge of the nose. You may feel partial nasal blockage and see green mucus.

Click here for more on sinus headaches.

Lateral View of Normal Sphenoid (wedge shaped bone) and Frontal Sinuses

Acute vs. Chronic Sinusitis

Acute sinusitis refers to a sinus infection that can suddenly flare up. It can be triggered by a number of factors but is usually the result of a cold or other tract infection.

If acute sinusitis fails to clear up completely it may develop into chronic sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis is a sinus infection that can recur for months or even years. It can come from acute sinusitis but can also develop without any preceding illness. Unfortunately it is very difficult for a physician to diagnose without taking an X-ray or carrying out a CT scan of the sinuses.

Maxillary Sinusitis X-Ray

What to do if you have a sinus infection.

Pay attention to the occasions when a sinus attack starts and stops, where you are, and what you are doing or handling. Eventually, you should notice a pattern and can discover all the triggers that may lead to sinus attacks and infections.

But until you're an expert, we hope the home remedies below will help.

Home Remedies and Tips

Remedy #1

Slowly, cautiously, and gently inhale the vapors of freshly grated horseradish (available at the supermarket).
While you're at it, mix equal amounts of grated horseradish and lemon juice. Eat 1 teaspoon an hour before breakfast and an hour after dinner. It gives long-lasting relief to some sinus infection sufferers who remember to take it everyday until symptoms subside.

Remedy #2

Crush 1 clove of garlic in 1/4 cup of water. Extract the garlicky water into an eyedropper. (Make sure no pieces of the clove get into the dropper.)
Dose: Use 10 drops of clear garlic water per nostril, 3 times a day for 3 days. At the end of the 3 days, you should notice that your sinus infection has cleared or begin to clear.

Remedy #3

Clear your sinus passages with peppermint oil, Afrin(TM) nasal spray, and steam inhalation to reduce inflammation and encourage mucus to drain from your sinuses.

Remedy #4

There are homeopathic remedies for sinus pain and congestion. These can also be used to open the nasal passages. Natural ingredients such as Kali bich 6C HPUS, Pulsatilla 6C HPUS, Hepar sulph 6C HPUS, Thuja 12C HPUS and Spigelia 6C HPUS all have properties to help with problems such as congestion and nasal drip. Products such as combine these ingredients. To learn more visit the manufacturers website.


Tip #1

Putting pressure onto the sides of your nose can help to relieve pain. Do this by taking lightly squeezing the top of your nose with two fingers for a few minutes.

Tip #2

Using a cool-mist humidifier can help clear mucus in the nasal passages because of the moist air.

Tip #3

Resting a washcloth that has been wrung out with hot water on your face for a few minutes can help to stimulate blood circulation, loosen mucus, and relieve pain.

When to see a Doctor.

See a Doctor if the you've tried everything and your sinus infection persists. Some symptoms that require the advice of a physician include:

  • Mucus discharge that is pus like, green, yellow or foul-smelling
  • Facial pain or headaches
  • Toothaches
  • Persistent cough
  • Fever

References (for sinus infection home remedies):
"Healing Remedies" by Wilen and Wilen
"The Doctors Book of Home Remedies for Women" by the Editors of Prevention Magazine

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