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a. the main causes of sinus disease are blowing nose too hard, not clearing up the first infection, getting chilled , not resting, and drinking iced drinks. this may start out a mild infection but with heavy "macho" blowing, the pus is spread all around the nose and ear.
with the allergy sufferer, after sneezing and exhaustion, without rest, the sinus infection may become chronic. weather can make a sinus condition worse, but it is not be a cause.
in menstruation and pregnancy there may be swelling of the membranes, but this is not the cause of the sinusitis.
most sinus problems show slow nasal cilia. these are the microscopic hairs that beat to move the bacteria out of the nose into the throat where they are swallowed and the stomach takes them out. by using saline with a special attachment that fits on the standard pulsating dental irrigator device such as a water pik " the cilia are pulsed at a rate of 20 pulses per second at a special pressure that is just right. thick mucus is removed so that the cilia return to normal rate of beating. if the pressure is too high you can put pus into the ear or other parts of the sinuses. there is a chemical called icam - 1 that is the entry way for the common cold virus. pulsatile irrigation is ideal for removal of this so that the cold virus can't enter. ige is the chemical that the allergy products - dust, pollen - combine with to make the allergy symptoms. this is also removed by pulsatile irrigation. the flow of the saline past the sinus openings displaces out the pus in the sinus. there are at least 30 medical journal articles that recommend this treatment for both sinusitis and allergen control.
a. the saline drops don't pulse the cilia back to normal, don't flow past the sinus openings to displace the pus and may contain preservatives that irritate the nose.
a. the sinus irrigator should be used daily if there are symptoms ,or if the common cold or allergy season is bad. if there are no symptoms, this means the cilia are working ok and you don't need the irrigation.
q. the recent mayo clinic research findings talked about finding fungi in the nostrils of sinus sufferers. could one add an anti fungal such as grape seed extract to the saline solution for better results?
a. i see no objection to adding grape seed extract to the irrigation. it will take me some time to evaluate the result of this addition.
a. after you irrigate, your sinuses contain the saline solution. this solution has displaced the mucus, bacteria, etc that was in the sinus. usually the cilia start to move as a result of the pulsation and this is why 20 or more minutes later the saline comes out. this is very desirable. it shows the saline went where you want it to go.
a. steam inhalation does bring circulation to the area, but hot steam can inactivate the cilia and if the nose has swollen membranes, the steam keeps the moisture in the tissue from evaporating.
a. good idea! saline spray is very helpful for dry sinuses and to moisten the membranes.
a. yes, daily saline spray can be helpful to prevent sinus problems.
a. the optimal humidity is about 20 %.
a. simple answer! close the windows in allergy season. the plants pollinate at 5 am. if the windows are open the pollen hits the nose. for allergy sufferers the body thermostat doesn't work well and any chilling starts the cascade of sneezing, etc.
a. the reason why sinus sufferers feel worse at night, and awaken with pain is that during sleep, the cilia "sleep", so dust, pollens accumulate giving maximum swelling.
a. for the allergy sufferer the thermostat is off kilter. instead of getting up out of bed and starting the day, the allergic/ sinus patient erroneously warms up his body by sneezing and hacking. this does warm the body but it starts a cascade that is undesirable. by drinking hot tea before getting out of bed the body is warmed and there is no need to sneeze.