Sinusoothe

Nasal Spray Addiction


What is nasal spray addiction?
Nasal spray addiction (Rhinitis Medicamentosa) is the term used to describe the dependency on over the counter decongestant nasal sprays due to them causing rebound congestion (congestion worse than before the nasal spray was used).

What causes nasal spray addiction?
Over the counter decongestant nasal sprays containing oxymetazoline, xylometazoline, phenylepherine etc. (topical vacoconstrictors) temporarily reduce the size of the nasal turbinates, open the nasal passages and provide relief from nasal congestion etc. However when these are used for more than 3 consecutive days they cause rebound congestion. Rebound congestion is the result of abnormal hypertrophy (enlargement) and swelling of the nasal membranes. This blocks the nasal passages causing the nasal congestion and associated symptoms. This rebound congestion is temporarily relieved by using the offending nasal spray. Therefore a vicious cycle of dependency ensues. The delicate lining of the nasal passages can be permanently damaged.

What are the symptoms?

  • Nasal congestion and difficulty breathing
  • Runny nose
  • Sinus/facial pain
  • Sinus/facial tenderness
  • Sinus/facial pressure,
  • Headaches
  • Pain in teeth
  • Pain in jaw
  • Pain in ears,
  • Pain through and around eyes
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Drainage of a thick yellow or green discharge from the nose or down the back of the throat (post nasal drip)
  • Reduced sense of smell and taste
  • Cough (which may be worse at night)
  • Nausea
  • Sore throat and halitosis (bad breath).
  • Irritability
  • Sleep disorders
  • Anxiety and nervousness
  • Chronic nose bleeds
  • Perforated septum
  • Dry/crusty nasal passages
  • Rapid heart beat

How should nasal spray addiction be treated?

  • SinuSoothe 100% Natural Nasal Spray - SinuSoothe can be used to replace the offending decongestant nasal spray. SinuSoothe relieves nasal congestion, inflammation, pain, headaches etc. and can be used regularly on a long term basis. It has no side effects, is non-addictive and doesn't cause rebound congestion. Since the active ingredients improve blood flow and regenerate cell production it can help heal any damaged nasal tissue.
  • Gradual weaning - It is possible to gradually wean yourself off of the offending decongestant nasal spray. Dilute it with a saline solution (a saline nasal spray would be ideal) say 90% decongestant to 10% saline for the first week reducing to an 80% decongestant to 20% saline mix the following week and so on. Eventually reducing the decongestant content to zero. This method is all about trial and error and each individual needs to adjust the mix to suit themselves.You can also try using your nasal spray in just one nostril. Once the nostril you haven't been using your nasal spray in is back to normal you can stop using your nasal spray altogether (you will be able to breathe through one nostril. You could also try a combination of the one nostril and dilution method).
  • Natural anti-inflammatories - Since the symptoms of nasal spray addiction is caused by inflammation it follows that by reducing inflammation you will reduce the severity of the symptoms. Omega 3,6 &9 oils, vitamin C, turmeric and ginger are all excellent natural anti-inflammatories. There are plenty of others and your local health food store should be able to advise you on these. It usually takes about 4 weeks for these to start taking effect.

Please consult your doctor before undertaking new treatments.