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dry sinuses

Hello All,

Help! My sinuses are sooooo dry! They're cracked and bleeding and very tender; I don't think they've ever been this bad. What I really need is a humidifier, but I am highly allergic to dust mites, and keeping the humidity low helps to keep them at bay. I may resort to a humidifier anyway, but I was wondering if you guys have any other ideas.

Is there any way to treat my dry sinuses? The problem is right where the nostrils narrow to enter the sinus, so I'm not sure that a saline spray would help (since that is shot into the sinus), and I have a neti pot but it hurts too much to use that right now.

Is there anything I could actually apply to the inside of my nose to soothe and heal it? I think a big part of the problem is that the dust in my apartment and the cold air cause me to blow my nose a lot, and that, combined with the dry air, means my nose never gets a chance to heal. If there were something like a salve that I could apply to the inside of my nose, perhaps right before bed, then maybe it would have a chance to heal.

Any suggestions are welcome! Anything to stop the ache and the bloody tissues! (Sorry of this is graphic!)


( 29 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 30th, 2007 09:11 pm (UTC)
You can use a plain saline nasal spray. I used that when I moved "more north" than Florida and was having a lot of nose bleeds.

Maybe a combination of a humidifier and HEPA filter would work keep you humidified without dust mites.
Jan. 30th, 2007 09:11 pm (UTC)
Hmmm, I was going to suggest a Neti pot, but I see that you've already tried that.

Regarding the humidifier...I don't know the specifics, but when I was researching one to buy a few weeks ago, I remember reading that one had an option that would automatically kick it off if the humidity got above a certain level. It did mention dust mites and that there is a humidity level at which they get worse.

So (for sake of argument, I'm just making these numbers up), suppose dust mites thrive at humidity levels above 50%, but your apartment is at 10% humidity, you could humidify it up to something like 30-40%?

Oh, and another idea is maybe inhale some steam? You can get something like this (http://www.amazon.com/Conair-Complete-Facial-Sauna-Cones/dp/B00005A9WP) at the local drug store, or the low-tech solution would be to put your face over a bowl of steaming water (or stand in a hot shower, or sit in a hot bath).

Good luck to you...that sound very painful!
Jan. 31st, 2007 03:57 am (UTC)
Yes, someone below discovered that dust mites don't do well in humidity levels below 70%, so I'd bet I could use a humidifier after all.

I may also go aheaed and suffer through the neti pot. It feels fine normally, but I'm just that irritated.

Jan. 30th, 2007 09:20 pm (UTC)
And whatever else, drink way more water.
Jan. 30th, 2007 09:30 pm (UTC)
You can try boiling water to help raise your humidity when you are there to supervise and putting out pots of water just to help raise it while you are getting better.

At night, I use a little blanket that I pull right over my head. I find then my breath creates a more humid environment so my nasal passages don't get dried out.
Jan. 30th, 2007 09:32 pm (UTC)
If you don't want to humidify the whole room, you could try leaning over a sink or pot of hot water and breathing the steam, or sitting in the bathroom with the shower running.

I find shea butter to be really helpful when my nostrils are super chapped, but I don't know if it would be a good idea to put it way far up your nose.

I ditto drinking lots more water. Yarrow is an herb that reduces bleeding, so you could try a tea of that, but unfortunately it tastes awful, so I usually add mint or something to cover the taste. You might also try taking zinc, which helps your body heal.

Jan. 31st, 2007 03:58 am (UTC)
I may look into the yarrow... not sure. But I do have some zinc tablets that I use when I'm feeling under the weather, I could definitely use those.

Thanks for the suggestions!

A few people have suggested breathing in steam, so that's another thing I'll do.
Jan. 30th, 2007 09:44 pm (UTC)
Have you ever tried a saline mist, as opposed to a saline spray?
Jan. 31st, 2007 04:16 am (UTC)
Hm... didn't realize there was a difference!
Jan. 30th, 2007 10:02 pm (UTC)
What helps me the most is using a neti pot daily with a packet of NeilMed Sinurinse. I also have a nasal spray that I'll use for extra moisture that has eucalptus and other oils in it, which I bought on Drugstore.com
Jan. 31st, 2007 04:20 am (UTC)
Well, I think I'll go ahead and restart my neti regimen, regardless of the current discomfort. Thanks!
Jan. 30th, 2007 10:09 pm (UTC)
I tie a bandana over myf ace when I sleep to help trap moisture. It really helps quite a bit, and there is no reason not to wear one or similar while you are in your apartment. You can dampen the bandana a bit if you find your breath isn't enough.
Jan. 30th, 2007 10:10 pm (UTC)
I have something from Rhinaris that is basically a sesame seed (I think) oil nasal spray, and it's supposed to be for really tough cases of dryness. (They also sell a gel, but it's completely different and not very natural).

And I second the suggestion to drink more water!
Jan. 31st, 2007 01:13 am (UTC)
if your neti pot burns perhaps you are using too little or too much salt, or salt with iodine. make sure you're always using non iodized sea salt, and no more than 1/4 tsp (tbsp? I forget. I'm sure it's here somewhere) per 8 oz. Sorry if you already know this. :)
Jan. 31st, 2007 03:54 am (UTC)
Yep, I know that! =) I use distilled water and am very careful that everything is measured out just right. My nose is just that irritated.
Jan. 31st, 2007 05:00 am (UTC)
wow! your poor nose must be in really bad shape right now then! good luck!
Jan. 31st, 2007 01:49 am (UTC)
Hmmm...I never knew about the dust mite/humidity thing. I know my husband, who has asthma, was encouraged to use a humidifier to keep *dust* and other air particles on the ground instead of floating through the dry air, but I guess since mites are actual organisms...hmmm...sounds like a conundrum!

I just googled a few articles on dust mites and while there are a gazillion different opinions on them, most seem to agree that dust mites thrive in 70% humidity or higher, and have real trouble living in humidity 50% or lower. So as someone already said, maybe you can find a balance where you raise the humidity in your house to relieve your sinuses, but not so high to encourage the dust mites to multiply like crazy.

I find that if I don't have the humidifer on at night, I have a really painful nose "encrustation" the next day, just a lot of dried blood and yuck, and it HURTS. So I sleep with a hot air humidifier next to the bed at night, but don't run it during the day. We keep little cans of water near the heater vents as well, and one on the wood burning stove. (I live in Colorado and it's *extremely* dry here.)

Also, I found totally disagreeing statements as far as ventilation: some said that letting in new air lets in new mites, others said you should ventilate your house so that they don't build up.

From my own personal experience, living with my husband and his asthma, he *has* to have the house aired out or his attacks just get worse and worse. Moving air is a godsend to him. So if you'd classify your home as dusty, maybe it would help more than hurt for you to air the place out on occasion. (We just moved from a tiny basement apartment that had no moving air at all, and I would always fight opening the windows in winter, because of the cold...but man, it sure felt better afterwards.)

Jan. 31st, 2007 04:13 am (UTC)
Wow! Thank you very much for finding all that info. It sounds like I could use a humidifier for a while -- it's not going to get over 70% in here!

I usually do open the windows occasionally even in the winter to get some fresh air, it's just been so cold here in Michigan lately (the projected high for Sunday, for example, is only 10) that I've kept everything closed. I'll air the place out anyway tomorrow. =)

Also, I'm skeptical that ventilating your house has much of an impact either way when it comes to dust mites. Apparently they are most prevalent in linens, mattresses and pillows, sofas, and carpeting. (And for the record, EVERYBODY has them!) Airing the place out wouldn't dislodge the mites that are living in your textiles, but I suppose it might blow some of the surface and floating dust out. From everything I've read, the only way to really combat them is dusting regularly and washing your bed linens in hot water once every week or two.
Jan. 31st, 2007 04:23 am (UTC)
Dust mites actually eat dead skin, not dust, so yeah... airing the house out doesn't really help with them.

What does, as you said, is regularly washing your linens in hot water (clears off the dead skin and the heat kills them).
Jan. 31st, 2007 02:24 am (UTC)
I use a sailine gel its called ayr. I find it very helpful for my sinus issues.
here is a link to it and if you read the whole page it will tell you what all is in it. that part is twards the end of the page.

Jan. 31st, 2007 03:52 am (UTC)
Oh, I'll check that out! Thank you!
Jan. 31st, 2007 03:29 am (UTC)
Well, to begin, make sure you're drinking enough water. Being fully hydrated can make worlds of differences.

Beyond that, I often find relief when my nose is irritated by the whole runny, dripping mucous thing going on (so not quite the same) by putting natural lip balm on the inside of my nose. Burt's Bees works excellent. I usually make my own, but I've used Burt's Bees before with the same results as my own stuff (except, the peppermint in Burt's Bees is going to sting and smell way strong all the way up there... so I would suggested going for something that is just wax and oil... or just oil if you must, like shea or cocoa butters). Basically the oil is what helps replenish moisture and soothe everything, and the wax helps keep it there and helps protect it (just like with your lips).
Jan. 31st, 2007 04:00 am (UTC)
You know, I was so uncomfortable earlier today that I actually did take out my Burt's Bees chapstick and use some in my nose. It's good to hear that is OK to do! It didn't sting at all, but everything smelled of peppermint lol!

I'll probably use it again, in conjunction with the other great suggestions people have offered. Thanks!
Jan. 31st, 2007 04:21 am (UTC)
Yeah, it just saves me during those times when the bottom of my nostril gets all chapped....
Jan. 31st, 2007 07:58 am (UTC)
Sesame oil applied to the inside of your nose (with a dropper, or even a q-tip in a pinch). Ayurvedic medicine is big on putting oils in your nose even when it isn't dry.
Jan. 31st, 2007 04:13 pm (UTC)
Interesting! I might try this... thanks!
May. 13th, 2008 07:51 am (UTC)
Terribly Dry Nose
My nose is always super dry and irritated too. I use a cotton swab to apply vaseline. Away from home, I use unscented lip balm (when no one's looking of course). I have to do these things all the time... c'est la vie. I have been afraid of the neti pot thing - afraid it might hurt like saline spray did. Should I give it a try?
Dec. 6th, 2008 04:26 pm (UTC)
Sinus help...
1) Clean: Dust,wipe and vacuum quarters twice at first, then repeat weekly.
2) Clean beddings:
a) Washhot,
b) rinse cycle with shot of ammonia and or dissolved salt.
(after water is filled, otherwise the NH4 fumes can be overwhelming)
3) Neti or spray: Saline, milk(Fresher The Better:FTB) , or Organic Oil.
4) Laugh when drinking milk.
(raw or breast milk would be healthiest, good luck finding it.)
(antibiotics occur naturally in raw milk. kills infection. ayervedic?)
5) Cry! Lacrimate! Allowing the tears to drain to the sinus providing a natural flush. (Think about the sad world future under the neitzscheans)
6) Humidity for immediate relief, but only until 1) 2)
7) Get a maid/wife/husband/child to do 1) 2)
8) Handkerchief, hospital mask, or industrial/asbestos mask.
(assuming govt. permits industrial masks to be sold to avg joe/jane
(without a special permit, license, supervision, inspection)
9) Zinc, I overlooked.
10) Vitamin E, digested or applied. FTB.(how to test Vit E for rancidness?)
11) Honey: Wildflower, uncooked, unheated, unpasteurized, FTB
(Rare Minerals, h2o2 producing enzymes, pollens each can aid sinuses)
(Dark wildflower honey is best, but the FDA restricts its sale.)
Jan. 27th, 2009 08:23 am (UTC)
A new all natural product called SinusMend TM is an excellent way to help provide relief to dry sinuses.
( 29 comments — Leave a comment )

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