Sinus infection is one of the most common infections affecting the respiratory tract. People suffering from sinusitis experience headache, pain and a sense of heaviness or pressure on the sinuses or the cheek bones. The sinuses are hollow pockets that lay within the bone surrounding the nose. Sinuses produce mucus that is drained into the nose.
An infection or inflammation of the sinuses causes swelling in the nose due to which the sinuses are blocked. This leads to the accumulation of mucus in the sinuses resulting in pain, and congestion. Sinusitis can be acute, or chronic. Acute sinusitis usually lasts for about four weeks, while chronic sinusitis can last for more than a month or even several years with or without symptoms.
Home Remedies for Sinus Infection & Sinusitis
The natural remedies given below can provide relief from a sinus infection in a safe and effective way. These remedies are aimed at providing relief from the disturbing symptoms of sinusitis as well as reducing the recurrent attacks of sinusitis.
The therapeutic efficiency of pineapple in treating sinusitis can be attributed to the presence of proteolytic enzymes, Bromelain, in it. During research, it was found that the patients who were given Bromelain experienced a statistically significant faster recovery from the symptoms of sinusitis.
It works by reducing inflammation in the sinuses thereby reducing congestion in the nose. It also reduces swelling in the nose and ensures proper drainage of the mucus from the sinuses. This helps to provide relief from the symptoms like a headache, heaviness, pain and tenderness over the sinuses. (1)
How to use
|orange juice||1 cup|
|chopped pineapple||1 cup|
|fresh papaya or kiwi||Half cup|
|coconut water||1.5 cups|
|lemon juice||2 Tbsp|
|agave syrup||1 tsp|
- Pour lemon juice and orange juice into a blender along with frozen banana chunks. Add about 3/4th of the total ice and half the amount of fresh fruit.
- Blend it well until you get a smooth paste.
- Add the remaining fruit, agave, and the remaining ice
- Blend again on low until the smoothie is done. Eat this smoothie once every day.
Turmeric contains a natural anti-inflammatory agent called curcumin, which helps to reduce inflammation and swelling in the sinuses and the nose. It also acts as an anti-oxidant thereby protecting the body against allergens, which can trigger an attack of sinusitis. Curcumin in turmeric produces a significant antibacterial activity, which helps in eliminating harmful organisms causing the infection. (2)
How to use
- Add a pinch of turmeric to a glass of milk and drink it at night before going to bed.
Note: you can use this remedy on a regular basis if you suffer from chronic sinusitis. Patients suffering from acute sinusitis can use this remedy two to three times a day till the symptoms last.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a strong antibacterial agent. It works efficiently in the treatment of all infections including sinusitis. It can help in reducing the symptoms of this disease by directly destroying the bacteria and clearing up the excess production of mucus in the nose and the sinuses. Apple cider vinegar also has the ability to boost the immune system. It increases the ability of the immune system to act against the bacteria thus ensuring faster relief from the infection. (3)
|Apple cider vinegar||2 tsp|
|Water||Half a cup|
- In a pan, mix ½ a cup of water and boil it.
- Drape a thick towel over your head, and lean over the pan, to inhale the steam. This will help to liquefy the mucus and allows you to clear your nose easily.
Note: Patients may use organic apple cider vinegar for better results.
Garlic is a natural antibiotic. It contains allicin, which is a potent antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal agent. Garlic has the ability to destroy a wide range of organisms. The broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity of this herb has been proved against several species of bacteria and fungi. (4)
How to use
|Turmeric powder||Half tsp|
- Boil 2 to 3 garlic cloves in one cup of water.
- Add half a teaspoon of turmeric powder.
- Stir well, and let it boil for a few minutes.
- Strain it and drink.
Fenugreek seeds have anti-inflammatory properties. It contains Diosgenin, a steroidal saponin, which has been shown to suppress inflammation. This property of fenugreek seeds is highly beneficial for relieving the symptoms of sinusitis. It inhibits swelling and excessive mucus production in the nose and the sinuses and thus, provides relief from sinusitis. Regular use of this herb is beneficial for the patients with acute as well as chronic sinusitis. (5)
How to use
|Fenugreek seeds||1 tsp|
- Add one tablespoon fenugreek seeds to the water.
- Allow it to boil for a few minutes. Strain it and drink this liquid several times a day.
Cod Liver Oil
Cod Liver Oil is rich in nutrients like vitamins A, C, and D, as well as Omega-3 fatty acids. Vitamins A and D are natural anti-inflammatory agents that help in reducing inflammation of the mucous membranes of the sinuses. (6)
Vitamin C present in cod liver oil helps to boost the response of the immune system and prevents the attacks of allergies. This helps in reducing the frequency and intensity of the attacks of sinusitis. It also improves the mood and helps a person suffering from sinusitis to feel fresh.
How to use
|Cod liver oil||1 tsp|
- The best way to use cod liver oil it to consume it directly from the spoon! Take one tablespoon of cod liver oil and take a breath in. Hold the breath, and swallow the oil. Avoid tasting the oil. Gulp it down immediately after placing it in your mouth.
Note: it is preferable to use fermented cod liver oil. The process by which the fermented oil is extracted from the cod livers does not cause any damage to the nutrients but can improve its beneficial effect in treating other disorders as well.
This red chili is a powerful home remedy for sinus infection. It can clear the nostrils and help in alleviating the pain and inflammation caused by sinusitis. The anti-inflammatory activity of this herb can be compared to the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. It provides instant relief from the pain by acting just like paracetamol without causing any side effects. It also acts as an analgesic and reduces pain by blocking the action of some enzymes called prostaglandins. That is why; cayenne pepper is considered a natural painkiller and inflammation reducer. (7)
How to use
|Cayenne pepper||1/4 tsp|
- Place one teaspoonful of cayenne pepper in a mug.
- Pour hot or boiling water over the cayenne. Stir in till cayenne is dissolved in the water. Some flakes of the cayenne pepper may be noticed floating in the water, which is fine.
- Squeeze in half a lemon into this juice and stir well.
- Let the tea cool down for about 1 or 2 minutes and then, drink it taking small sips.
- Drink the tea once or twice a day for 3 days or till the symptoms last. But, avoid using this remedy for more than 10 days.
Note: Begin with one teaspoonful of cayenne and work your way up slowly so that your body can adjust to the strong flavor and taste of this herb. Do not let it cool down completely as it may reduce the effectiveness of the remedy.
Refrain from drinking anything else or eating any foods for at least 10 minutes after consuming this tea.
This sweet spice is highly effective in the management of acute and chronic sinusitis. It has been used traditionally for the treatment of other respiratory problems like nasal congestion, common cold, and sore throat. The chemicals present in cinnamon have the ability to destroy the harmful bacteria that cause sinusitis. It also reduces inflammation in the nasal passages and allows a patient to breathe easily. Cinnamon also helps in breaking down and removing the mucous from the sinuses. (8)
How to use
- Mix half or one teaspoon of cinnamon and 1 teaspoon of honey in a glass of water.
- Let this mixture boil for a few minutes. Strain this liquid and consume it while it’s still warm.
Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties. Patients suffering from chronic sinusitis can benefit from the regular use of this herb. This herb also acts as an anti-bacterial and antioxidant agent. It protects the nasal passages from further damage in the case of chronic sinusitis. It also helps in improving the ability of the body to get rid of the infection naturally by enhancing the functions of the immune system. Ginger also reduces the production of mucus thus preventing nose block. (9)
How to use
|Fresh ginger||Half an inch|
- Chop half an inch of fresh ginger and add it to a cup of boiling water.
- Let it brew for about 10 minutes.
- Strain the liquid and drink it as tea.
- It can also be used to inhale the steam. The vapors from the liquid can be inhaled deeply to obtain instant relief from nasal congestion.
Patients with acute sinusitis can obtain quick relief from nose block and headache by using horseradish. It is a strong antibacterial agent that helps to clear up the infection and reduces the symptoms of sinusitis. The antibacterial activity of this herb is comparable to the effect of standard antibiotics. It also reduces the production of mucus in the sinuses and allows them to drain thus clearing up the nose block. (10)
How to use
- Grate a horseradish.
- Put a pinch of the grated herb on your tongue and hold it for a few minutes. Breathe normally as you feel the taste and flavor of horseradish passing through your taste buds.
- Once the flavor reduces, you can swallow it. This will help to clear the mucus from the throat.