Sinus infections, often caused by allergies, the presence of nasal polyps, a deviated septum or exposure to irritants like cigarette smoke, are painful, often inflammatory conditions of the hollow, air-filled sacs which lie behind the cheekbones and forehead. These infections can be bacterial, viral or fungal in nature and while there are some prescription medications such as antibiotics which can sometimes be effective, there are many home remedies to treat this condition, too. Six of them are discussed below.
Nasal wash treatment
Nasal irrigation is beneficial for a sinus infection because it removes mucus and other debris from the sinuses and also helps to keep them moisturized and soothed. To irrigate at home, mix together a teaspoon of sea salt and a half teaspoon of peroxide and irrigate with bulb syringe. It should not be done more than once daily, as more frequent use can irritate the sinuses.
Apple cider vinegar
Take advantage of the antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties of apple cider vinegar by using it as an oral treatment for sinus infections. To use, simply mix a teaspoon of honey, two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and a cup of warm water. Drink this mixture three times a day for five days to help your body fight off the sinus infection.
Cayenne pepper helps treat a sinus infection in many ways. It is able to open up the sinuses and allow them to drain effectively. It also is able to bring down the painful inflammation and swelling of the sinuses and boost blood flow to the area to help the sinuses heal. In addition to this, it strengthens the immune system so that the body is able to more effective fight off the infection. To use, mix a teaspoon of cayenne pepper into a cup of hot water and drink 2-3 times daily.
Onions are a natural decongestant and will open up your sinuses and allow them to drain. It also has natural antibacterial and antifungal properties than can prove useful in sinus infection treatment. To use, add a chopped onion to a pan of water and bring it to a boil, then inhale the vapours. Take the pan off of the heat, strain the water and drink it. You can repeat this safely several times a day until the congestion clears.
Garlic has strong antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties, so it can fight a sinus infection no matter what kind of organism is causing it. To use, chop 2-3 garlic cloves and add to a pan of boiling water, then inhale the fumes for several minutes; you can repeat this several times a day until the infection clears. You can also add extra garlic to your diet when you are sick to help treat the infection systemically.
This is another natural antibiotic with high sulphur levels which also acts as a decongestant. To take advantage of its properties, put a piece of horseradish in your mouth, hold it there until the flavor dissipates, then swallow it. This will help the infection clear.
Sinus infections are painful and inconvenient. However, the natural remedies listed above will help you get relief with having to resort to prescription medications and are just as effective as more conventional treatments.