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How Does the Winter Season Affect Your Sinuses?

If you think those sinus problems that plague you during the spring and summer months will go away when winter arrives, you are in for a rude awakening. The winter season can cause just as much sinus misery as the warmer seasons.

The good news is that you can minimize sinus or allergy flare-ups by taking some simple measures. This should allow you to spend more time enjoying winter fun and less time under the weather.

Winter Culprits

Winter brings cold and damp weather, both of which can worsen nasal congestion associated with allergies and sinusitis. You have a higher chance of catching a cold or the flu in the winter, which can spell trouble for your sinuses. The lining inside the nose becomes inflamed when you have a cold or flu. This inflammation prevents the sinuses from draining properly. As a result, mucus builds up, creating a perfect breeding ground for bacteria that can cause an infection.

People spend more time indoors in the winter. This fact causes more exposure to indoor allergens such as dust, pet dander, mold and smoke.

Winter holiday festivities can also wreak havoc on your sinuses. Mold that grows on Christmas trees may aggravate the sinuses. Alcohol causes inflammation of the lining inside the nose, so it may be a good idea to stick to non-alcoholic holiday drinks if you have these issues.

Scented candles or decorations and pine-scented artificial trees also irritate the lining of the nose, which can worsen allergies or sinusitis.

Winter Tips for Sinus Relief

Below are some tips to keep your sinuses clear and help you breathe a lot easier during the winter:

If you have sinus problems that persist despite following these tips or using medication, see an ENT specialist or allergist.

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