Clearing The Air: Expert-Recommended Nasal Congestion Hacks

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Explore nasal congestion hacks as experts respond to the revelation of ‘unsound’ drugs. Discover effective options following concerns raised about their efficacy.

In response to an FDA advisory vote deeming oral phenylephrine ineffective in popular OTC drugs such as Benadryl, Mucinex, and Sudafed PE, medical experts are now sharing alternative options to provide essential congestion relief for allergy sufferers.

  1. Nasal Sprays:
    • Nasal spray phenylephrine is still considered effective for temporary congestion relief.
    • Consider corticosteroid nasal sprays like Flonase or oxymetazoline nasal sprays like Afrin and Zicam.
    • Limit the use of decongestant nasal sprays to three days to avoid rebound congestion.
  2. Pseudoephedrine:
    • Pseudoephedrine, found in Sudafed, remains a potent option for congestion relief.
    • It is available behind the pharmacy counter and requires a government-issued ID and sign-in due to regulations aimed at deterring methamphetamine production.
  3. Steam Therapy:
    • Inhaling steam can alleviate clogged sinuses.
    • Enjoy a steamy shower or savor a comforting bowl of hot chicken noodle soup.
    • Steam can be a quick, soothing remedy for congestion.
  4. Rest and Relaxation:
    • A good night’s sleep and relaxation can aid in combating cold or allergy symptoms.
    • Prioritize sleep hygiene by avoiding screens before bed, maintaining a cool and dark sleeping environment, and elevating the head of the bed or using extra pillows to ease congestion.
  5. Hydration:
    • Staying well-hydrated helps thin mucus and soothes irritated nasal passages.
    • Consume warm herbal teas, clear broths, and plenty of water throughout the day.
  6. Saline Nasal Sprays:
    • Non-medicated saline nasal sprays can provide relief by moisturizing and clearing nasal passages.
    • These are safe for frequent use and can be particularly helpful in dry indoor environments.
  7. Humidifiers:
    • Using a humidifier in your bedroom can add moisture to the air, preventing nasal passages from drying out and exacerbating congestion.
  8. Elevate Head Position:
    • Sleeping with your head elevated by propping up pillows can help reduce nighttime nasal congestion.
  9. Nutrition:
    • Include foods rich in antioxidants and immune-boosting nutrients in your diet to aid recovery and reduce allergy symptoms.
    • Incorporate fruits, vegetables, and vitamin C-rich foods.
  10. Consult a Physician:
    • If congestion persists or worsens, consult a healthcare professional for personalized advice and potential prescription medications.

In light of the recent findings on the ineffectiveness of oral phenylephrine, individuals have a variety of alternative options to choose from for managing nasal congestion. These expert-recommended strategies encompass both medical and natural approaches to help alleviate discomfort and promote respiratory well-being.


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