Natural remedies for sinus infections include saline nasal rinses and gargling with warm salt water. In addition, drinking plenty of fluids can thin out viscous nasal secretions and allow for optimal sinus drainage. Certain people might also benefit from consuming apple cider vinegar, either diluted with water, or taken in capsule form to help reduce the symptoms of sinus infections. It is important to note, however, that before taking apple cider vinegar or other home treatments, people should consult their health care providers to make sure that natural remedies for sinus infections are safe alternatives for their conditions.
Sinus infections can either be bacterial or viral in nature. Although most healthy people benefit from natural remedies for sinus infections, some people, especially those who have resistant infections, may need antibiotics or antiviral medications prescribed by their physicians. Nasal irrigation devices, which use saline preparations mixed in water can be a beneficial sinus infection treatment. Typically, a salt-based powder is mixed into a small pot, and the mixture is then alternately poured into each nostril, with the head tilted. As the water runs out of the opposite nostril, the sinuses are irrigated and cleansed by the solution, reducing bacteria.
Other natural remedies for sinus infections include consuming foods rich in vitamin C, as this vitamin is considered a potent antioxidant and immune system booster. Generally, vitamin C is better tolerated when it is consumed in food, as taking supplements can cause gastrointestinal distress such as nausea and diarrhea. Inhaling steam through a vaporizer, pot of hot water, or from hot running water can open up the sinuses and relieve symptoms of congestion and facial pressure. In addition, steam facilitates optimal nasal breathing and can soothe a sore throat that frequently occurs as a result of post nasal drip.
Among other natural remedies for sinus infections are nasal sprays that contain natural saline solution. These sprays are generally safe to use for people of all ages, including small children. Since saline based nasal sprays do not contain decongestant medications, they do not provide anti-inflammatory benefits to the nasal passages, however, they are soothing and can thin out secretions. They also can be used as needed, whereas decongestant nasal sprays need to be used sparingly to avoid a rebound effect. While natural remedies for sinus infections are often curative, prolonged or repeated sinus infections might need a medical evaluation to determine the cause.