Blowing your nose as hard as possible may seem like a great idea at first, but we can file this under the 'don't' category. It could mobilize unfavourable bacteria from your cavities, breaking them out of their mucous prison and allowing them to multiply.
Swallowing causes the bad bacteria to travel through the nasopharynx, down the esophagus and into the stomach where it will then be destroyed by the stomach acid. In another scenario, the pressure produced by blowing your nose may actually drive the mucous further up into the nostrils.
Do you still have to blow your nose? Then while blowing, keep one nostril closed to force the mucous to take the fast route out of the sinuses.
While we look forward to the day where influenza can be cured, antibiotics are not useful in treating the flu. This is because the flu is caused by a virus and antibiotics target illness' with a bacterial component.
However, with a compromised immune system like the one seen while battling the flu, you are more at risk of developing secondary infections that are bacterial in origin. At this points, antibiotics may be prescribed by your primary care provider.
Of course, nobody ever wants to complain about it but a neglected runny nose can escalate into a sinus infection. When your body decides to turn on the tap, the mucous membranes in the nasal cavity begin to swell and the connection between the paranasal sinus and the nasal cavity can quickly become blocked.
When this situation occurs, it effectively traps in the bacteria. Depending on the species of bacteria, they may thrive in dark, oxygen poor environments. This allows them to rapidly multiply potentially leading to sinusitis. A sinus infection often causes complaints such as a heavy, pounding headache around the eyes and pressure pain in the cavities.
As you may have felt in the past, a cotton handkerchief quickly becomes saturated with mucus after blowing a few times. Not very hygienic!
Every time you use the cloth, you place it back into your pocket while it's teeming with bacteria. With the next blow, you bring the germs back to your nose which may allow them to access the skin.
While it may not seem the most environmentally friendly option on the surface, much better to use paper tissues and throw them away after one use knowing they decompose within two weeks to a month in a landfill.
The heat generated by steaming helps to alleviate clogged sinus cavities. By adding hot moisture to the nasal passages, the mucus begins to thin and loosens up. Pour half a litre of hot water in a bowl and consider adding some drops of your favourite essential oil (ex.: eucalyptus, thyme or rosemary).
Not too many though or the scent can become overwhelming. With a towel over your head and the bowl, meant to trap the heat, an inhale through the nose will bring the steam in.
Nasal congestion is one of the unfortunate symptoms that may suffering from the flu will have to suffer. Therefore, make sure to have a nasal spray at home and on hand to manage the symptom.
For instance, Sinna nasal spray can relieve sinus congestion and inflammation with frontal headache and catarrh, extending to the frontal sinuses as well as rhinitis.
The global COVID-19 pandemic that saw the healthcare system pushed to the brink reminded each of us why prioritizing hygiene is top priority. Continue the habits taken from that tumultuous time to optimize your health.
We keep stressing this because we hope you take this tip to the heart. A neglected and depleted body is ripe for the flu or cold, which may haunt you for weeks. Therefore, take care of yourself and indulge in the rest your body is asking for!