Sneezing or sternutation is a physiological process caused by irritation of the nasal mucosal membrane and involves a forcible expulsion of air from your lungs through your nose and mouth. Sneezing is a powerful reflexive response since it involves the face, throat and chest muscles. The act of sneezing is actually a defence mechanism of our body and happens when either foreign particles or other external stimulants reach our nasal mucosa. Sneezing is also caused by illnesses, nasal congestion and allergies.
Home Remedies For Running Nose And Sneezing
Sneezing and a runny nose can be caused by either infections or more commonly by allergies. While it‚Äôs advisable to visit your physician if these symptoms persist for more than a few days and are intense, it‚Äôs good to know that there are several natural home remedies to allay the effects of continuous sneezing.
Ginger is a good natural remedy for colds and sneezing. Gingerols and Shaogals present in ginger known to kill of rhinoviruses, the bacteria that causes cold and relieve cold. It also has anti-inflammatory properties which brings relief to sore throats and a congested nose.
- Hold a finely minced ginger over a cup using a strainer.
- Pour boiling water into the cup through the strainer and wait for 5 mins.
- Squeeze the ginger in the strainer with a spoon before taking it out.
- Add a teaspoon of honey to the water and stir.
- Sip this tea slowly to help with your sneezing woes.
2. Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus essential oil is one of the best natural remedies for a congested nose as its aroma is known to react with the mucous membrane and clear the phlegm and give relief.
- Put a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil on your handkerchief.
- Gently inhale the vapours by putting the handkerchief close to your nose. This will help decongest your nasal passage and ease your sneezing.
- Another way of using is to add 2-3 drops in hot water and inhale the steam.
3. Citrus Fruits
Vitamin C in citrus fruits helps in building up your immune system to fight against microbes causing cold and sneezing.
Fruits like grapefruits, sweet lime, lemons and oranges must be consumed daily as a preventive measure against cold.
Amla is a fruit that is full of antioxidants and antibacterial properties that helps to build immunity to fight off cold causing infections.
Amla should be eaten two to three times a day either raw or as a juice.
5. Black Cardamom
Black cardamom is an aromatic spice. Black cardamom oil helps normalize mucous flow in the respiratory tract and prevent sneezing.
To treat sneezing, chew on black cardamom two to three times a day.
Basil leaves or more specifically tulsi leaves have are an important part of Indian culture and are well known for their various health benefits. It has strong anti-bacterial properties that treat infections and is known to warm the body from inside and help in treating respiratory problems.
- Add 3-4 tulsi leaves to boiling water.
- Take the mixture daily before bed for 2-3 days.
- Cultivating a habit of drinking tulsi water regularly is also recommended.
7. Fennel Seeds
Fennel seeds have anti-bacterial, anti-histaminic and anti-viral properties. So fennel seeds are not only great at warding off infections but also bouts of allergic sneezing.
- Add crushed fennel seeds to a cup of boiling water.
- Keep the crushed seeds soaked in water for 10 to 15 mins then strain the water.
- This is fennel tea. Enjoy two cups daily to reduce your sneezing bouts.
8. Fenugreek Seeds
Fenugreek seeds have anti-inflammatory, anti-histaminic and antibacterial properties which make them a potent home remedy for sneezing.
- Use one teaspoon of roasted fenugreek seeds to make tea by infusing them in warm water.
- Simmer for 10 mins on a medium flame.
- Strain and drink to enjoy its benefits.
Tamarind can act as an effective home remedy for the treatment of sneezing.
- Take a small piece of tamarind and soak it in warm water for about 30 mins before taking it out.
- Add a tablespoon of black pepper powder, half a teaspoon of turmeric powder and few curry leaves to the water and bring it to boil on a low flame.
- Simmer the mixture for 15 mins before consuming.
- Consume this soup daily to maximize its benefits against cold and sneezing.
10. Peppermint Oil
Peppermint oil is an essential oil that has antibacterial properties which are known to ward off cold-causing bacteria and toxins hence it can be used to remedy sneezing caused by infections.
- Add 5 drops of peppermint oil to boiling water.
- Inhale the fumes from this boiling mixture by covering your head with a towel to direct the steam into your nasal passages.
11. Black Pepper
Black pepper is an effective and easily available home remedy for sneezing as it has strong anti-bacterial properties. It is also known to warm the body from inside and relieve nasal congestions.
- Mix a half a teaspoon of black pepper powder in lukewarm water.
- Drink this mixture 2-3 times daily.
12. Chamomile Tea
A cup of chamomile tea will not only provide instant relief from a sore throat but also remedies sneezing because of allergies due to its antihistaminic properties.
- Mix a teaspoon of dried chamomile flowers with a cup of boiling water.
- Have the tea two times a day to stop allergic sneezing.
One of the remedies to stop sneezing is garlic. Garlic is known to have antibiotic and antiviral properties which help it fight upper respiratory infections which usually cause sneezing.
- Crush a few garlic cloves and inhale their smell.
- This helps in clearing your nasal passages which would usually cause sneezing.
Other Natural Ways To Treat Sneezing
A few more ways to protect yourself from irritating sneezing bouts are
One of the best and simplest remedies to stop sneezing is inhalation of steam. Just put your head over a pot of boiling water and inhale the steam for 15-20 mins. You can cover your head with a towel to direct the steam to your nose. This helps clear up your nasal passages leading to decreased nasal irritation and decreased sneezing.
2. Use Tongue
You can transiently treat your sneezing by tickling the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 5 to 10 seconds, till the urge to sneeze goes away.
3. Blow Your Nose
Sneezing is caused by irritants present in your nose. You can control sneezing by blowing your nose. This will help you get rid of the irritant in your nose and hence defuse your sneeze reflex.
4. Nettle Leaf
Nettle leaf is a natural antihistamine which helps with allergic sneezing. Nettle leaf can be had as a herbal tea to allay sneezing caused by allergies.
Preventive Ways To Combat Sneezing
It‚Äôs always a good idea to take preventive measures to combat sneezing caused by allergies or upper respiratory tract infections. Some of the ways to prevent sneezing include
1. Increase Immune System
Having a strong immune system will help prevent infections leading to sneezing. A good diet, daily exercise, and eating foods rich in vitamin C like citrus fruits will act as a preventive measure against sneezing.
2. Keep Away From Allergic Products
Allergens act as triggers to sneezing bouts. While different people suffer from different allergies it‚Äôs good to check and eliminate commonly occurring allergens from your diet. Foods which can commonly cause allergic sneezing bouts to include dairy products, wheat, seafood, nuts, etc. So it‚Äôs a good idea to identify and avoid any allergic triggers.
3. Drink Warm Water
A glass of warm water can offer relief in case of allergic sneezing. Warm water instantly soothes a sore throat that is usually accompanied with sneezing and is probably the simplest remedy for easing the problems associated with allergic sneezing.
4. Maintain Proper Hygiene
Keeping proper hygiene not only helps reduce your contact with popular allergens like dust and pollen but also reduces the chance of contracting an infection. Clean your hands properly everytime you come back home and before eating food. Avoid eating outside and if you do use a sanitizer to cleanse your hands before eating.
5. Protect Yourself From Dust
The most common allergen to trigger allergic sneezing is dust. Household dust can contain dust mites and pollen which are a common cause of allergic sneezing. It‚Äôs a good practice to avoid areas that are laden with dust. If possible wear a face mask to protect yourself from dust and keep your house clean and dust free.
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