4 Tips to Help Sinus Sufferers Get a Good Night’s Rest
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I don’t know about you, but it’s tough for me to fall asleep when my sinuses are bothering me. You lay your head back, and it almost feels like you're drowning. Plus, there’s all that pressure in your head. Even if you're propped up, you know you’ll just be waking up in a little while, coughing up the postnasal drip! What can you do to get some rest? Here are four tips to help you sleep a little easier.
1. While sinus issues and allergies are not caused by the same things, you can relieve some of your congestion by limiting the amount of allergens that enter the room you sleep in. This means keeping pets out of the bedroom, using an air filter, and laundering bed sheets regularly. Eliminating the added problem of potential allergens may well help contribute to better sleep.
2. Sinus rinses and nasal sprays may also help you sleep better. Sinus rinses, such as those that require a neti pot, use a saline solution to rinse out the sinus area. Doing this before bedtime can help you be less congested when you lie down for sleep. Saline nasal sprays can produce a similar effect as rinses without being as invasive, but they're often more expensive and require a prescription. Be sure to follow any product instructions and warnings before using either.
3. Some doctors recommend sleeping on your side; this can help with the uncomfortable feeling of postnasal drip and make it less likely that you’ll wake up with a sore throat. But be careful if you’re susceptible to ear infections, as lying this way can cause fluid to run to one side.
Your environment is important — even more so than the position you sleep in. It’s vital that there's nothing to keep you up or wake you, like lights, a TV, or your cell phone. If you're awakened, you may have trouble getting back to sleep. Try charging your phone in another room at night so that even the vibrations won’t interrupt your sleep.
4. Make adjustments to your lifestyle that make sleeping easier in general. Having a set time for bed will help you fall asleep faster, for example. And avoid big meals, caffeine, and alcohol right before you lie down to sleep. Be sure to get plenty of exercise, eat healthy foods, and maintain a healthy weight. Room temperature is important, too: If it's much below 68 or above 70 degrees Fahrenheit, it'll be tougher to fall and stay asleep.
You’ll notice that many of these are simply good sleep habits. Often, the key to falling asleep with sinus problems is falling asleep quickly and not being awakened until morning. Some things like rinses and sprays can provide temporary relief from symptoms and help you sleep better. After that, it's up to you to create an environment that's conducive to a good night's sleep.
PHOTO CREDIT: Tom Grill/Getty Images
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