Nasal polyps

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Nasal polyps are soft and non-cancerous, tear-drop shaped growths that develop inside the sinuses and nose. They are usually found around in the area where the sinuses open into the nasal cavity. The polyps do not cause pain, but they can become large and cause blockage of the airways which makes it hard to smell and breath.

Large-sized nasal polyps block the normal drainage from the sinuses. When there is plenty of mucus buildup in the sinuses, it can become infected and result to a thick, discolored drainage coming from the nose and throat.

Symptoms

  • Decreased sense of taste and smell
  • Excessively runny or stuffed up nose
  • Pressure can be felt on the forehead or face
  • Headaches
    Nasal polyps

    Pressure can be felt on the forehead or face

  • Pain can be felt in the upper row of teeth
  • Feeling that the nose is clogged when there is no mucus at all

Causes

  • Asthma
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Chronic or recurring infection of the sinuses
  • Allergic rhinitis or hay fever
  • Sensitivity to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen or aspirin
  • Churg-Strauss syndrome

Treatment

  • Use a saline rinse or salt water wash in order to help lessen the inflammation in the nose and dries the mucus that cause blockage of the nasal passages. Salt minimizes the production of adiponectin which is a chemical that causes inflammation. In a cup of boiling water, add ½ teaspoon table salt and mix well until the salt is dissolved. Once cool, place the solution in a clean squeeze bottle or a neti pot and rinse out the nasal passages.
  • Try steam inhalation since it helps open up the nasal passages and thin out a thick mucus secretion due to congestion. Close all windows and doors in the bathroom and run a hot shower and inhale the steam from the hot shower. Another way is by boiling a pot of water in a large bowl. Place a towel over the head and neck and position the face over the water bowl and inhale the steam. Make sure that the towel is covering the head and bowl so that the steam will not escape. Breathe in deeply until the steam can be felt in the nose. Continue inhaling until the water cools down. Essential oils such as peppermint and eucalyptus can be added to the water to improve the nasal-clearing effect.
  • Get plenty of sleep every night to help the body rest so that it can effectively fight illnesses and infection easily. Sleep at least 7-8 hours of sleep every night.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet to make the immune system healthy. It is recommended to include lean protein, unsaturated fats, non-dairy products and plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables in the diet every day. Take vitamin C supplements at least 500mg and 1000 mg of Vitamin C every day to keep the immune system strong and function properly. Foods rich in Vitamin C include guava, lemon, kiwi, oranges and papaya.
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  • All canadianfirstaid.ca content is reviewed by a medical professional and / sourced to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

  • We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable websites, academic research institutions and medical articles.

  • If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, out-of-date, or otherwise questionable, please contact us through our contact us page.