People think that a blocked nose is due to too much mucus in the nasal passage. However, it is actually caused by inflamed blood vessels in the sinuses and may or may not have include mucus discharge. There are many triggers for a stuffed nose like colds, fluid, allergies or irritants like tobacco smoke. Whatever the reason may be, these home remedies should help you get relief from a stuffed nose.

Everyone has suffered from a stuffed nose at one time or the other. This is an annoying condition where your nose just drips and runs, you talk funny and when you blow your nose to finally breathe again, you find that nothing seems to come out.

1. Eucalyptus oil is a common ingredient used in decongestants and chest rubs as they help clear nasal passages when inhaled. It can be used in many ways to help alleviate a stuffy nose. You could put 3­4 drops in a vaporizer or add 10­15 drops to your hot bath. Just remember to breathe deeply for best results.

You can also make your own eucalyptus oil inhaler to carry around with you for relief from a stuffy nose. Fill a small plastic vial with cotton and add a few drops of the oil to it. Close the vial’s cap and anytime you find it difficult breathing, just open the vial and take a few deep breaths.

2. Cayenne pepper helps reduce the inflammation in nasal passages with its anti- inflammatory action, and thus reduces any nasal congestion. It also reduces the irrigation of a stuffy nose and dries up mucus discharge. Cayenne pepper is best used as a tea made by combining 1⁄4 tsp. cayenne pepper powder with a cup of boiling water. Sip as required after stirring for relief from your stuffy nose.

As the tea is a bit on the spicy side, make sure you can handle its heat before you consume a large portion of it. If you can handle it, you can also try sniffing a pinch of cayenne pepper. It provides instant relief, but may give some burning sensation for a few minutes.

3. Ginger root also helps alleviate a stuffy nose. It is recommended to drink ginger tea to combat nasal congestion. Make the tea by boiling a 5­inch ginger piece in 2 cups of water for about 10 minutes. Then remove the ginger root from the liquid and if required, sweeten the tea with honey and lemon. Drink a cup of this tea every 2­3 hours till your nasal congestion subsides.Post-4-1

4. Horseradish root helps clear sinuses and improves circulation to nasal passages to promote the discharge of mucus. For relief from a stuffy nose, grate a fresh horseradish root and eat 1⁄2 tbsp. of it. Another option is to buy a commercially available jar of grated horseradish and eating about 1⁄2 tbsp. at a time. It is better not to use this remedy on an empty stomach to avoid stomach irritation.

5. Sleep with your head in an elevated position as it helps reduce the build ­up of mucus.

6. Keep yourself well ­hydrated for a speedy recovery. Always keep a clean handkerchief or a few tissues handy to blow your nose.

7. Drinking hot liquids like soups and hot herbal teas give you relief from a stuffy nose. You can also try drinking a healing beverage made from Holy Basil leaves, ginger, honey and peppercorn for relief.Post-4-2

8. Cut down your consumption of dairy and wheat products to reduce the stuffiness in your nose. Simultaneously, increase your consumption of zinc, vitamin C and other nutrients.

9. Moistening your eyes with water or saline drops also helps as it reduces the itching, pain and dryness.

10. Steam is a great remedy for treating stuffy nose. The simplest way to reap its benefit is by standing below a hot shower for steam. Another option is to boil water and pour it into an inhaler and add some eucalyptus oil or capsules in it. Then crouch over the inhaler with a towel over your head and breathe deeply.

Just remember that while a nasal congestion causes only discomfort to adults and children and can be treated using these home remedies, it can lead to serious health problems in infants. It is thus safer, and better to consult a doctor immediately if your baby suffers from nasal congestion instead of using these home remedies.