Alternative Answers for Sinusitis
Chronic sinusitis refers to inflammation of the sinuses that
continues for weeks, months, or even years. Allergies are the most
common cause of chronic sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis can persist even
after antibiotics are given. It's the most frequently reported
chronic disease. Chronic sinusitis can also be caused by structural
abnormalities of the nose, such as a deviated septum (the bony
partition separating the two nasal passages), or by small growths
called nasal polyps, both of which can trap mucus in the sinuses.
Acute sinusitis occurs when bacteria invade the sinus cavities and
impair proper drainage of mucus from the sinuses to the nose. Chronic
inflammation of the nasal passages or rhinitis also can lead to
sinusitis. Allergic rhinitis or hay fever is the most common cause of
chronic sinusitis and is a frequent cause of acute sinusitis.
Investigate your sinusitis. It could be food related, environmental,
or reactions due to chemicals . Vasomotor rhinitis is caused by
humidity, cold air, alcohol, perfumes, and other environmental
conditions. Medical science believes the sinuses around your nose act
like small air-quality filter centers. It's their job to warm,
moisten, purify, and generally condition the air you breathe before
going to your lungs.
Entering bacteria gets trapped and filtered out by mucus and minute
nasal hairs called cilia. This air-flow system can sometimes slow
down when something impedes the cilia, if a cold clogs the sinus
openings, or if an allergen swells the sinus linings. Then air gets
trapped, pressure builds, the mucus stagnates, and bacteria breed.
Infection sets in and you have sinusitis. When you get clogged up,
you may end up with a permanent thickening of the sinus membranes and
Sinusitis can also be caused by a variety of factors, such as virus,
fungal infections, and medication side-effects. Inhalation of
airborne allergens such as dust, mold, and pollen, often set off
Those who are cigarette smokers and people who suffer from upper
respiratory allergies are even more likely to develop bad sinus
There are four pairs of sinuses in the human skull that help
circulate moist air throughout the nasal passages.
The common cold is the most prevalent predisposing factor to
sinusitis. Acute sinusitis typically causes symptoms of nasal
congestion and a thick yellow or green discharge. Other symptoms
include tenderness and pain over the sinuses, frontal headaches, and
sometimes chills, fever, and pressure in the area of the sinuses.
Chronic sinusitis differs slightly, in that symptoms can be milder
and may only include postnasal drip, bad breath, and an irritating
dry cough. Hay fever, environmental triggers unrelated to hay fever,
food allergens, and dental infections can also lead to sinusitis.
Humidity is the key to keeping the cilia working, the mucus flowing,
and the sinuses drained.
Managing Your Sinusitis
Prevention is the key!
Twice a day, stand in a shower hot enough to fog up the mirror. Or
lean over a pan full of steaming water with a towel draped over your
head, creating a steam tent. Inhale the vapors as they waft up toward
your nostrils. Eucalyptus oil is often used in a steam inhalation to
help clear nasal and sinus congestion. Eucalyptus oil works similarly
to that of menthol by acting on receptors in the nasal mucosa,
leading to a reduction in the symptoms of nasal congestion. Just add
4 to 6 drops to a pan of steaming water with a towel draped over your
head and inhale the vapors.
Applying moist heat over the sinuses, is an easy way to wash away
sinus pain. Apply a warm washcloth over your eyes and cheekbones and
leave it there until you feel the pain subside. It may take only a
Flush out nasal secretions. Mix 1 teaspoon of non-iodized salt or sea
salt with 2 cups of warm water and a pinch of baking soda. Pour it
into a shot glass, tilt your head back, close one nostril with your
thumb, and sniff the solution with the open nostril. Then blow your
nose gently. Repeat on the other side.
An Ayurvedic solution, similar to this is done in the same manner
with a Netti Pot. It looks similar to a tea pot, but with a longer,
narrower spout for the nostrils. These can be found in most health
To clear excess mucus from the sinus, combine the juice from the
horseradish root with the juice of 3 lemons. Take a 1/2 teaspoon
between meals for several months until the mucus in the sinus clears.
Bromelain Bromelain is a plant-enzyme. Bromelain is not actually a
single substance, but a group of protein-digesting enzymes found in
pineapple juice and in the stem of pineapple plants. It is primarily
produced in Japan, Hawaii, and Taiwan. Local swelling is the
releasing of histimines in a localized area causes the vasodilation
and increased permeability of blood vessels. Bromelain has an anti-
inflammatory effect and is a very effective treatment for sinusitis.
It is recommend taking 200 to 400 milligrams three times a day on an
empty stomach at least ninety minutes before or three hours after
eating. Discontinue use if you develop any itching or rash.
Cayenne Peppers contain Capsaicin, a substance that can stimulate the
nerve fibers and may act as a natural nasal decongestant.
Elderflower, is excellent for catarrh and sinusitis. This herb
reduces symptoms and promotes healing.
Garlic has the same chemical found in a drug given to make mucus less
sticky. This is a wonderful natural antibiotic and detoxifier which
protects the body against infection by enhancing immune function.
Horseradish is an herb used traditionally, as it dissolves mucus. One
half to one teaspoon (3–5 grams) of the freshly grated root can be
eaten three times per day. Horseradish tincture is also available.
One quarter to one half teaspoon (2 to 3 ml) can be taken three times
Nettle Leaf, 300mg, taken twice per day can lead to effective
results. Stinging Nettle plant (Urtica dioica) relieves hay fever
symptoms quickly in most people, has no toxicity, and is even a
valuable source of iron and trace minerals. Do not take this herb if
you have high blood pressure.
Wood Betony is used in traditional European herbal medicine as an
anti-inflammatory remedy for those with sinusitis.
Aromatherapy can clear sinusitis by combating infection, opening up
nasal passages, reducing congestion and relieving pain. Essential
oils such as Cedarwood, Eucalyptus, Ginger, Lavender, Marjoram,
Peppermint, Pine, Rosemary, Sandalwood, Tea Tree and Thyme are all
beneficial for this condition. Cedarwood: is an excellent choice for
treating respiratory problems. As an expectorant, it helps to
dislodge and expel mucus, decreases congestion. As an antiseptic, it
Eucalyptus: fights bacterial and vrial infections. This oil
stimulated regeneration of lung tissue. It increases blood oxygen
supplies allowing more oxygen as well as nutrients to be delivered to
the cells throughout the body.
Ginger: stimulates the immune system. It warms the chill from winter
and dampness, cools the body by inducing sweating, reduces the
drainage of a runny nose and helps with respiratory infection.
Lavender: clears congestion, stuffiness and soothes respiratory and
throat disorders and boosts the immunity.
Marjoram: eases respiratory disorders such as asthma, bronchitis,
colds and flu and sinusitis.
Peppermint: clears sinuses and improves breathing.
Pine: fights respiratory infections and encourages the release of
mucus. This oil relieves congestion and makes breathing easier.
Rosemary: helps relieve respiratory disorders, fights infection,
expels phlegm and assists in lymph drainage.
Tea Tree: a cousin to eucalyptus, this oil relieve respiratory
disorders, fights bacteria, viruses and fungi and has a reputation of
Thyme: improves immunity by boosting the production of white blood
cells. This oil is great for respiratory disorders.
Steam treatments and hot baths have a cleansing effect on allergies.
Instructions for a warm bath: Fill your bathtub with water slightly
warmer than body temperature, around 97° to 101°F (You can check the
temperature of the water with a regular thermometer.) As the tub
fills with water add 2 spoons of Angel's Mist Deep Soak Sea Salts to
the bath water for a soothing, skin cleansing soak. Submerging as
much of your body as possible, stay in the bath for at least 20
minutes, adding water as needed to maintain the temperature of the
Steam Inhalation First, boiling water. Remove the pot from the stove.
Add a few drops of lavender, eucalyptus and tea tree oil or the other
oils listed above to the water and then with a towel, make a tent
over your head and inhale the steam for 10-15 minutes. Add just a few
drops of one - three oils only.
Consider cleansing the nasal passages with a Neti Pot. This Ayurvedic
solution has been used for centuries to keep the nasal passages clear
of mucus and congestion.
Water should be a very important part of any nutritional program. 6-8
8 ounces per day. Water allows for the cleansing, thinning and free
flow of mucus in the system.
Some studies indicate that people with sinusitis have environmental
allergies. Although food allergies may also contribute to the
problem, some researchers believe food allergies only rarely cause
sinusitis. If other treatment approaches are unsuccessful, people
with sinusitis may choose to work with a nutritionist in order to
evaluate what, if any, effect elimination of food and other allergens
might have on reducing their symptoms.
Supplementation with 250 mg of Pantothenic Acid two times a day helps
most patients suffering from allergic rhinitis, a significant
predisposing factor for sinusitis. However, research has yet to
investigate the effects of Pantothenic Acid supplementation with
people who have sinusitis.
Histamine is associated with increased nasal and sinus congestion.
Vitamin C (2,000 mg three times per day) reduced histamine levels in
people with either high histamine levels or low blood levels of
Bromelain, an enzyme derived from pineapple, has been reported to
relieve symptoms of acute sinusitis.
Eliminate milk and all milk products from the diet, including
prepared foods that list milk as an ingredient. An overwhelming
majority of patients report dramatic improvement in sinus conditions
after two months of this dietary change.
Do not smoke. Do not spend time around smokers or in smoky
Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac.
Therapies for healing
mind, body, spirit