Saturday, September 23, 2023

My Nose Gets Stuffy When I Lay Down

Practice Nasal Breathing Techniques

Why Is Only Half of My Nose Working?

When you practice deep breathing techniques through the nose, it can improve your bodys function and allow an easier transition to more natural nasal breathing.

Its helpful to practice nasal breathing patterns before bed, in the morning, or during exercise. Start by practicing this exercise, called alternate nostril breathing:

This exercise is common in Yoga classes – you might hear it identified in Sanskrit as nadi shodhana pranayama. To engage in this practice, start by positioning yourself in a seated position with your back straight. Maintain this tall posture throughout the breathing exercise.

Once youre seated, relax your shoulders, relax your neck, and relax your tongue. Place your left hand on your left knee, and press your right thumb onto your right nostril. Inhale through your left nostril, hold your breath, and then move your ring finger and right pinky to your left nostril.

Exhale your breath through the right nostril, then inhale through your right nostril to repeat the exercise.

Test Out Saline Spray

Dr. Steven Olmos advises that saline nasal spray with xylitol is a quick way to reduce inflammation and rehydrate the swollen nasal tissue. When the spray contains the antimicrobial xylitol, it may be able to kill sinusitis-causing bacteria.

For immediate relief throughout the day, he recommends spritzing saline nasal spray in each nostril. Please follow the recommended dosing instructions on the packaging and do not use the product for longer than recommended.

Take An Otc Decongestant

The last step to take before bed is trying an over-the-counter decongestant. According to a study, decongestants can help relieve congestion symptoms in adults. The temporary soothing effect may set you up for a better nights rest.

You can find decongestants such as Sudafed and Vicks Sinex at most stores. Before taking the medicine, read instructions carefully and be aware of common side effects including nausea, dizziness, and headache.

Disclaimer: You should consult your doctor before taking any medications.

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If You Want A Decongestant

If you dont have underlying health concerns that prevent you from taking a decongestant, heres how to stop feeling so dazed in the cold remedies aisle.

Know that there are two types of OTC decongestants, both of which constrict blood vessels, says Zhou.

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Pseudoephedrine is OTC, but pharmacists have to keep it behind the counter and note its purchase . It not only constricts blood vessels, it also somewhat works on the lungs to help open those. It has two mechanisms of action that help you breathe better, she says.

Phenylephrine, the other main type of decongestant that you can just pluck off the shelf, doesnt have that lung action.

The trouble with these at night is that theyre stimulants. So for PM or nighttime formulations, drug companies add something to the meds that help you sleep. If you dont like or need those sedating additions, theres a hack you can try with daytime meds, says Zhou. Try taking a 12-hour formulation about 11 or 12 hours before you want to sleep. It may keep your nose from being blocked long enough to get you to sleep, and hopefully a stuffy nose wont awaken you in the middle of the night.

Use A Corticosteroid Nasal Spray

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Corticosteroids are a type of drug that reduces inflammation. Corticosteroid nasal sprays are used to treat inflammation-related congestion, runny nose, and sneezing.

Theyre among some of the

Before bed, take steps to promote relaxation and make your sleeping environment more comfortable. Medication, nasal strips, and chest rubs can help with your symptoms.

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Avoid Caffeine & Alcohol Past Noon

Drinking caffeine and/or alcohol can increase your symptoms and make it harder to get a good night’s sleep. Both of these can also dehydrate you, which will make it harder for your sinuses to flow well. Instead of drinking alcohol or coffee, try drinking hot tea before bedtime to hydrate. Hydrating will help thin the mucus in your passageways so you can breathe better.

Sleep In A Cool Dark Room

When youre sick, you may be more sensitive to light and changes in body temperature. If youre looking for a more soothing night light option, a glow light can give your bedroom a soft glow that dims as you fall asleep.

In addition, be sure to check your thermostat before you hit the hay. The best temperature for sleep is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit, so you may want to keep your home in that range.

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Switch To Decaf In The Afternoon

A stuffy nose can prevent you from getting proper rest, so you might be tempted to pour an extra cup of joe to make up for it.

While it may seem counterintuitive, upping your caffeine intake could actually make you more sleepy. Thats because coffee can remain in your system for around 10 hours, meaning your midday cup might just make things worse when youre trying to get some shut-eye.

Especially if youre struggling to fall asleep due to nasal congestion, you might want to switch to decaffeinated coffee during the afternoon. That way, youll feel tired when its finally time to crash.

Take An Otc Pain Reliever

Drs. Rx: How to Clear a Stuffy Nose!

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like aspirin and ibuprofen are commonly used to soothe inflammation. In addition to general pain relief, a study has shown that NSAIDs may relieve some discomfort caused by the common cold.

Popular NSAIDs like Advil, Motrin, and Aleve are available over-the-counter, so seeking relief can be as easy as a trip to the drug store. However, before taking NSAIDs, you should be aware of potential side effects such as heartburn and stomach pain and speak with your doctor if you have concerns.

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Common Reasons For A Blocked Nose At Night

Not only is a blocked nose uncomfortable but, if you suffer from the problem at night, it has the potential to disrupt sleep. Since lack of sleep can affect everything from our concentration to our mood, it is really important to figure out what’s causing your congestion and then tackle it.

There are a few things that often cause a blocked nose at night including:

  • Heartburn/acid reflux.
  • In this piece, I’ll explain why these things may cause a blocked nose at night, plus I’ll offer some general tips to help ease congestion and improve sleep.

    Why Do Stuffy Noses Get Worse At Night

    Sometimes when you feel fine during the day, you wake up at night with a stuffy nose. Theres a few reasons that stuffy noses develop and worsen at night.

    At the most basic level, when youre lying down, gravity isnt helping to drain the mucus from your nose like it does when youre standing or sitting upright. Without the help of gravity, mucus can accumulate in your nasal cavity while youre asleep and result in a stuffy nose. Also when youre lying down, more blood flows to our heads, which can further inflame the blood vessels in your nose.

    If your childs stuffy nose is due to allergies, chances are it will also get worse at night. Oftentimes our body makes less allergy-regulating hormones at night, which makes us more likely to experience the uncomfortable symptoms of allergies such as stuffy noses.

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    Take A Steamy Shower Before Bed

    Hot steam may help open the sinuses. Steam loosens the dried mucus and can help the nose drain before bed, reducing pain and congestion.

    Some people find that massaging the skin covering the sinuses promotes further drainage. Taking a warm shower before bed may also help a person relax before trying to sleep.

    Best Sleep Position For A Blocked Nose

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    Keeping your head propped up whilst you’re asleep will encourage mucus to flow from the nose and will help take some of the extra pressure away from your head. Simply add an extra pillow or two to do this. If you suffer from symptoms of acid reflux and are worried this could also be adding to your problems with congestion, this tip will also help with the issue!

    Along with this, try to sleep on your side rather than on your back. Sleeping on your back allows mucus to build up which will not only make it harder to sleep, it could contribute to snoring as well.

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    Why Congestion Gets Worse At Night

    Nasal congestion, also known as a stuffy nose, is caused by fluid building up in the tissues lining the nasal passages. This shrinks the airway making it very difficult to inhale and exhale. It’s also frustrating because you may blow your nose thinking that’s helping, but it actually isn’t since there’s no snot or other exudates coming out of the actual nasal passage. Then you have a red and raw nose from the tissues and it’s just a very frustrating experience.

    This experience may be worse at night because you are too distracted during the day to realize how stuff you really are. So, you could theoretically be the same amount of stuffy, but it doesn’t become extremely noticeable until you lay down and try to go to sleep, but can’t breathe.

    However, that is not the whole story. Sometimes lying down does make symptoms worse due to anatomy and gravity. During the day, you are standing and sitting so gravity and drain mucus and give you an open passageway. However, when you are horizontal, gravity can cause mucous to pool instead of drain.

    Stay Hydrated Throughout The Day

    You lose some of your body fluids every time you breathe.6 Dry air can decrease even more of your bodys fluids by taking the moisture from your skin, throat and nose.6 Staying hydrated throughout the day can ensure you have enough bodily fluids before you go to bed at night.6 The fluid in your body can keep the lining of your nasal passage moist and will help loosen the mucus in your nose.1,6

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    Is It Dangerous To Sleep With A Blocked Nose

    Getting plenty of sleep is key to helping your body fight infections like the common cold39. Nasal congestion is rarely anything to be seriously worried about40.

    So, while it may be a little uncomfortable, sleeping with a blocked nose is not only safe but essential41. Try using some of the tips weve suggested to help yourself sleep easier, so your body has the energy it needs to fight off the infection.

    For quick relief from your blocked nose at night, try the SUDAFED® Decongestant range . With active ingredients like pseudoephedrine hydrochloride, our decongestant tablets fight nasal congestion by reducing swelling so you can breathe more easily through your nose42.

    How To Sleep With A Stuffy Nose

    Nose Unblocking Exercises – How To Get Rid Of A Blocked Nose

    Although having a stuffy nose at night is common, there are simple steps that you can take to alleviate your stuffy nose and sleep better.

    To get better sleep with a stuffy nose:

  • Prop your head up with extra pillows. The best sleeping position when you have a stuffy nose is on your back with your head propped up on pillows. “This will reduce blood flow to the head and improve gravity-dependent sinus drainage,” Kim says.
  • Try bedding covers. If you suspect that you might have a dust mite allergy say, if you only begin experiencing a stuffy nose once you’re in bed using pillow and mattress covers can reduce your exposure to dust mites, Kim says. While you’re at it, be sure to change your sheets at least once a week.
  • Place a humidifier in your room. A cool-mist humidifier moistens the nasal lining and keeps mucus loose, allowing it to drain more easily and reducing stuffiness.
  • Use nasal saline rinse or spray. If you’re feeling stuffy before bed, use a saline rinse or nasal spray as part of your nighttime routine. This can loosen mucus and provide much-needed moisture to reduce irritation in your nasal passages.
  • Run an air filter. Environmental allergens from perfume to dust can contribute to stuffiness, and reducing allergens can keep it at bay. “Use an air purifier with a high-efficiency particulate air filter,” Kim says.
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    Blood Flow Changes And Alternate

    When you lie down, your blood pressure changes. You may have increased blood flow to the upper part of your body which can inflame vesicles inside of your nose and nasal passages. This inflammation can definitely worsen the congestion that you feel. Increased blood flow during pregnancy can also be a common cause of congestion.

    In addition to blood flow changes there is also alternate-side nasal congestion. Sometimes you may notice that only one nostril is clogged at night. This is caused by the nasal cycle, which isn’t a disorder, but simply a normal process. The congestion occurs when a turbinate becomes swollen in one nostril. This blocks the air on that one side. This cycle may switch throughout the day or at night, but it definitely isn’t allergies.

    If Your Nighttime Stuffiness Is From Allergies

    If you have allergies, nighttime can be especially tricky for your nose. At night, your mast cells can be very active and can start firing off histamine at night, says Dr. Wright. Thats an attempt by your body to help you get rid of an allergen. But it they can also contribute to mucus and contribute to the traffic jam thats already happening.

    Take care of your allergies, of course, and your nose shouldnt be as blocked at night. The first step, of course, is to contact a doctor and figure out exactly what youre allergic to. Then you can:

    • Control your exposure to that allergen as much as possible. So if its certain kinds of pollen, youd want to keep your windows shut when its everywhere, and make sure you shower and change when you come in from the outdoors when those trees, flowers, and grasses are in full bloom. You want to do as much as you can to remediate your environment, says Dr. Wright.
    • Consider OTC medications. By controlling the allergy with OTC allergy medications , you may be able to eliminate nighttime stuffiness. You may need an antihistamine medication , or you may want a nasal steroid . Just be aware that the nasal steroids can take a few days or a week for you to notice that theyre working. Some people may end up on both medications, says Dr. Wright.

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    Remedies And Treatments For A Stuffy Nose

    In general, you want to keep mucus thin, which will help it drain from your nose. Over-the-counter drugs, nasal washes, and positional adjustments may also help.

    Breathe in Steam

    Steam thins mucus and soothes irritated nasal passages. Taking long showers can also help with muscle aches and mild fatigue, which are symptoms that sometimes accompany a stuffy nose. You can also fill a bowl with hot water and lean over it. Drape a towel over your head to contain the steam and receive maximum benefits.

    Drink Plenty of Fluids

    Drinking lots of water isnât a bad idea when you arenât feeling well, because it will keep you hydrated, but there isnât much scientific evidence that fluids have a real effect on colds and congestion. You can also drink fruit or vegetable juices, which bring their own health benefits, but be careful not to let sugar consumption spike. Hot herbal teas will both contribute to your fluid intake and provide plenty of steam to flush out your sinuses.

    Flush Nasal Passages

    A neti pot or nasal irrigator will flush your nose out. You can purchase a saline spray at most drug stores or make your own. Use it several times a day to help clear congestion and keep nasal passages moist. If making your own, combine:

    • 1 cup warm water
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • A pinch of baking soda

    Just be careful to keep your neti pot or irrigator clean. Wash the head and rinse out the body after each use. These devices can easily become contaminated with irritants or bacteria.

    Avoid Blowing Your Nose

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    When youre sick with a cold, you might have the urge to blow your nose frequently. However, before you reach for the tissues, keep in mind that blowing your nose too hard can cause excess pressure. This strain may cause fluid from your nose to release into your sinuses.

    If you do need to use a tissue, try to be as gentle as possible, and dab the area instead of blowing. If you decide to blow your nose, doing so lightly may help avoid any adverse effects.

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    Try Cold And Flu Medicines

    Using cold and flu medicines with decongestant and other ingredients can make it easier to breathe. They may also help with other symptoms, such as achy muscles and headaches.

    People should be careful to avoid non-drowsy daytime products before bed, as these may make it harder to sleep. Conversely, it is generally best to avoid nighttime products when a person needs to be awake, because these will likely cause drowsiness.

    Avoid combining multiple medicines, and do not give babies or children decongestants unless a doctor recommends it.

    How To Sleep With A Blocked Nose

    Getting a good night’s sleep can help your body recover from a cold or blocked nose12. But having a stuffy nose at night can sometimes make that feel like an impossible task.

    That’s why we’ve put together a few top tips to help you get some much-needed shut-eye if youre experiencing congestion at night.

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