Stuck in stuffy nose hell? As tempting as it is to blow through a tissue box a day, the temporary relief you might feel is not worth it. Put the tissue down and try these ways to breathe easier.
♦ Steam it out: Warm air helps add humidity to your nose, opening your nasal passage and breaking up congestion so you can then blow out the blockage. The easiest is taking a long shower every day that you are sick. But crank the knob so it is hotter than usual: If your mirror fogs up, it is steamy enough to clear your nasal package. If you have got some time to kill, boil a pot of water and stand directly over it, inhaling the steam for up to 30 minutes.
♦ Start the right nasal spray: Over-the-counter sprays can help decrease and treat underlying inflammation, helping cure your congestion instead of just providing brief relief. Fast-acting sprays like oxymetazoline are potentially addictive, and can actually make your congestion come back worse if you use them too often. So opt for triamcinolone acetonide or fluticasone, which take at least 7 days to kick in, but boast the best combination of safety and effectiveness.
♦ Take an allergy pill: While you are waiting for the sprays to work, consider popping an allergy pill. Even if your sniffles are not from hay fever or pollen, the antihistamine component in these meds still works to dry up your snot.