Got a case of the sniffles? Chances are that your nose is running faster than a waterfall. But what is a runny nose exactly? A runny nose is a nasal discharge of mucus. Your doctor might use the term “rhinorrhea” to diagnose your runny nose. “Rhino” is a Greek prefix meaning, “nose,” and “rrhea” means “flow” or “discharge.” A runny nose is the result of excess nasal mucus production, leading to watery nasal secretions that discharge from the nostrils or drip down into the throat. While a cold or the flu is often the culprit, a runny nose can also be the result of allergies. There are simple steps you can take to feel better fast. Here are some smart ways to stop a runny nose:
Drink plenty of fluids
Sipping lots of water and clear chicken broth will help thin your mucus and allow it to drain faster from your nose and sinuses. Drinking hot tea or milk can also have a soothing, warming effect.
Get plenty of rest
When you’re not feeling well, it’s crucial to get plenty of sleep so your body can heal. Plus, resting will give you a much-needed break from blowing your nose!
Apply a warm compress
Putting a warm compress over your nose and forehead can help relieve sinus pressure and congestion. If you don’t have a compress, try moistening a washcloth with warm water and applying it to your face several times a day. This will help relieve nasal congestion and help stop your runny nose.
The next time you have a stuffy nose, try sitting in the bathroom with the shower running. You can also breathe in steam from a bowl of hot water. Inhaling warm (not hot) steam can help soothe the mucous membranes lining the nose.
Use a humidifier
A clean humidifier or cool mist vaporizer is a great way to add moisture back into your environment. Doing so will help keep your nasal passages moist, allowing mucus to drain faster. In other words, you’ll get rid of your runny nose faster.
Try a saline nasal spray or drops
Using a gentle saline nasal spray, or drops three to four times a day can help stop a runny nose and make it easier to breathe. The saline solution will help soothe the mucous membranes inside the nose.
Use the right OTC meds
Non-prescription medications can help ease your symptoms. Although Vicks products can’t cure a runny nose, they can help you feel better until it clears up on its own. Cold medicines, like NyQuil COMPLETE
and NyQuil Cold & Flu
, will help relieve your runny nose and other cold & flu symptoms so you can get the rest you need.