Postnasal drip refers to excess mucus secreted from the nose and throat. It can be treated with prescription antibiotics if the cause is due to bacteria. Otherwise, over-the-counter treatments such as decongestants, nasal sprays, or home remedies like using a humidifier and steaming can also effectively treat Post nasal drip. You can opt for the different types of postnasal drip treatment depending on the severity of the condition.
It is normal for the nose, sinuses, and throat to produce mucus which is essential to keep the organs running smoothly. However, when this secretion becomes extreme, you’ll find that the music tends to drip down the throat, and you may find that you need to clear your nose and throat more often than usual.
What causes Postnasal Drip?
There are many reasons why a person may suffer from postnasal drips, such as:
- When suffering from a cold or the flu
- Allergies can also be a trigger for postnasal drip. But for this cause, the condition is called allergic postnasal drip
- People with a sinus infection
- Side effects of medication, especially blood pressure and birth control medications
- Cold weather
- Having a deviated septum which affects the sinusitis
- Dry air (Air conditioning)
- Chemical fumes from cleaning products, perfumes, or smoke
- Spicy food
- Pregnancy can also be a trigger
Symptoms of Postnasal Drip
The most common symptom of postnasal drip is that there is a constant need to clear the nose and throat because of the mucus dripping down the back of the throat.
Some other symptoms include:
- Scratchy throat
- Soreness in the throat
- Bad breath
- If the condition is severe, the mucus could plug up your eustachian tube, which can cause an ear infection.
Postnasal Drip Treatments:
There are many ways you can treat postnasal drip. If the condition is not very severe, some over the counter treatments can help ease the discomfort, such as
Use decongestants like pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine to help dry out the mucus so it doesn’t drip into your throat, causing you to clear your throat time and again. However, these OTC treatments may not work for some people as they can dry out the nose excessively, causing dizziness and even pain. The goal of these treatments is to dry out the mucus so you are left with less buildup in your nose and throat.
Conversely, thinning the mucus out is another remedy that can be done by using guaifenesin, an OTC treatment. This helps make the mucus close to a water-like fluid move quickly through the passage and not cause blockage.
Nasal sprays can also help remove the music buildup entirely. Paired with saltwater irrigation pots, you can clear up your nose and reduce the amount of mucus. If the Postnasal drip condition is caused due to allergies, antihistamines can help reduce the secretion, making it easier to get through the day doing routine tasks.
Other than this, home remedies like drinking lots of warm fluids and doing nasal cleaning procedures can help clear your nose of congestion.