Does dry air cause sinus problems?
Dry air is the term used to describe air that has little moisture in it. Most common in arid geographic locations and during cold weather, dry air can change the way your body takes in air while breathing. Air that is too dry can cause sinus irritation and inflammation. This is because the nasal passageways are built to allow mucus to flow out to avoid excessive buildup in the sinus canals. When mucus lacks moisture from the air, it does not flow the same way it normally would. Over time, this leads to nasal congestion, irritation, inflammation, sinus pressure, and a number of other uncomfortable symptoms and conditions.
Why does dry air cause nasal congestion?
Dry air is directly related to nasal congestion because it influences the consistency of mucus in your nasal passages. The drier the air, the drier your mucus becomes, and the less the mucus will be able to flow as usual. Mucus drains through the sinus passages similar to the way tears would flow out of your eyes. When the mucus is unable to flow, it causes dry sinuses and mucus backup in the passageway that stops up your breathing. This can lead to other complications over time, so dry air should be avoided whenever possible.
What causes dry air in my home?
The main cause of dry air is the weather outside. Warmer weather will result in higher humidity in the air and cooler weather will result in lower humidity in the air. Heating the cold air that is inside your home will increase the temperature of the air, but will not add moisture back into it. Instead, your home during cold months is actually much drier, even when a heater makes it feel warm in the house. A humidity controller can help alleviate this issue by humidifying the dry air.
How can I relieve dry sinuses & dry air?
Some tips to help you manage the air in your home and avoid nasal congestion due to dry air include:
- Take steps to properly seal your home to prevent dry air from seeping in during the colder months
- Use a home humidifier to add moisture into the air
- Stay hydrated by drinking water throughout the day
- Place saline drops or petroleum jelly on the inside of each of your nostrils using a cotton ball to keep your nasal passageway moist
If you are suffering from dry sinuses, the first step is to consult with a sleep health expert. Ear, nose, and throat specialists at eos sleep have extensive experience in treating ear, nose, and throat conditions as well as sleep-related problems. Call 212.873.6036 today or fill out the form on this page to schedule an appointment or to learn more about eos sleep treatment options.