When you are coping with constant sneezing, headache, a runny nose, an itchy throat and other allergy or sinus symptoms, you want relief right away. While you may need a doctor’s care to get lasting relief, there are many over-the-counter treatment options that can at least temporarily ease allergy symptoms. If seasonal or indoor allergies have you suffering, look to the allergy and sinus treatment choices below:
If you hate feeling drowsy….
… try one of the non-drowsy antihistamines that are available. Consumer Reports rates Loratadine and Fexofenadine as the best picks for convenience, effectiveness, cost and safety. These are all available as generics. “Pick either a brand name or generic version in the formula you like best,” says Dr. Shah.
Many individuals take these medications once a day as a prophylactic measure against allergy symptoms. Most are effective for 24 hours. You can take one in the morning if you plan to go hiking after work or if you know that later in the day you’ll be exposed to indoor allergens like animal dander or dust.
If you are experiencing sinus pain…
… you can get relief from products that combine a decongestant with a pain reliever. There are a number of versions available with either Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen. Some may also include the chest congestion reliever Guaifenesin. If you are taking any other cold or allergy medications, read your labels carefully. Many remedies combine several medications in a single pill. It can be easy to accidentally take too much of any one medication.
Many people also find relief from sinus pain by taking either an over-the-counter painkiller or decongestant on its own. If you decide to take decongestants alone for sinus pain and pressure, taking them early is key. They are most effective if you take your medication at the first sign of sinus pressure.
If you are looking for medication-free relief…
… consider buying a Neti pot or another nasal irrigation device. These can usually be purchased in the drug store in the same area you can buy over-the-counter drugs for sinus and allergy troubles. A Neti pot uses a saline solution to flush your nasal cavities and reduce the inflammation that can contribute to congestion. The salt in the saline solution draws fluid out of tissues, which can provide soothing relief.
If you choose a Neti pot, always follow instructions. Use distilled water in the solution to avoid the possibility of contaminants or irritants. In studies, people found relief by using a Neti pot daily at first, then going to a few days a week once their symptoms resolved.
While these over-the-counter treatment options can provide relief for many people, it’s not optimal to be on allergy medications every day. In addition, some people will need medical care to permanently defeat their allergy and sinus problems. Balloon Sinuplasty and other therapies can help with underlying issues that contribute to allergy woes to help reduce or eliminate the need for medications.
Plagued with chronic sinus or allergy problems? American Sinus Institute can help. Call for an appointment today.