I am a 28 yr old male with no history of allergies or ear infections. I had been smoking cigarettes liberally for about 10 years and quit smoking completely as of January, 2009.
About 6-7 months ago I developed (as if overnight) extreme sinus congestion. Usually my nose is completely blocked up around the clock, especially in the morning. Blowing my nose tends to do nothing, except for the rare occasion that while standing in a hot shower I can get a bit of gunk out now and then. I also have had extremely red chapped lips ALL the time. My family physician did blood tests to test for vitamin deficiencies and found nothing out the ordinary.
I saw an allergist about 4 months ago, they did all the standard allergy tests and didn't find anything. The doctors suggested that perhaps it was seasonal allergies and placed me on Clarinex, Nasonex and Astepro - none of which have had any sort of effect. I purchased a Neilmed Netipot, but my sinuses are so blocked that I can't use the product, as the nasal rinse wont travel through my nasal passages.
The ONLY medication that I have taken that helps is Neo synephrine nasal spray. Within minutes of using that stuff I get instant relief and can actually breathe through my nose (still can't blow anything out). However, it says on the label that you're not supposed to use it for more than 3 days.
I'm not sure of where to look for answers next. I've always read about people have quit smoking and felt so much healthier, and I feel like since I've quit smoking I've simply opened another door of health concerns. Has anyone else experienced something like this? I've never had any sort of health issues that have onset so quickly and persisted for so long!
Have you gone to a ear and nose doctor, did your doctor do an x-ray? I read somewhere that if your lips get chapped all the time, its a sign that your body is full of yeast. I hope you get to feeling better...sorry I couldn't give you much answers.
i also quit smoking in 2009 and have experienced terrible sinus congestion ever since...worse part is, i am a nurse! i have seen my primary doctor, and an allergist, and had allergy testing done with no reactions to speak of. Your symptoms are vey close to mine as far as not being able to blow the nose, little relief with antihistamines, and sometimes no relief with sinus rinses. my allergist told me to quit taking zyrtec because i didnt need it, but i certainly need something...im miserable...the allergist is sending me for a CT of my sinuses...hopefully that will give me a clue as to what is going....have you seen an ENT yet???
I am in the exact same position as you guys. I quit smoking in Dec 09 and pretty much right away my sinuses were plugged. I haver tasted food since I quit smoking and I can't do my regular workout because it is hard to only breathe through my mouth. I have a 2 month wait to see an ENT, but I can't wait that long. I get severe sinus aches and get shooting pain from my sinuses to my forehead. I have spent an obscene amount of money on medication and none of it worked. I am desperate and would try anything at this pint. Please help!
I'm still having issues with my sinuses and the chronic chapped lips, however I did try something a few weeks back out of desperation that seemed to work temporarily...
After analyzing all my symptoms - headache accompanied by sensitivity to bright lights, occasional blurred vision, noticeably more bloodshot eyes, and the chronic congestion, I'm still determined that I'm dealing with just a very nasty sphenoid (sp?) sinus infection.
If you look around on the web, I found a few forums in discussion of a special method of nasal irrigation (I've already tried netti pot, and it didn't work for me at all). Anyway, it's a method called the 'Flip Turn nasal rinse'. I'm sure there are posts floating around the web that describe the process in detail. It's somewhat awkward, but doable in the shower, but it does mention that it's risky in that you have to tilt completely forward and such while squirting saline solution in your nose. This method is supposed to help irrigate the frontal and sphenoid sinuses that a typical netti pot rinse can't do as well.
Anyway, I tried this method about a month ago - it was moderately uncomfortable (kinda like accidentally swallowing ocean water - it burns your throat and nose for a few hours afterwards) but it worked AMAZINGLY well.... I had thought the problem was cleared up completely after immediate results and nearly a week of breathing great - I guess I didn't take care of ALL the gunk, because eventually the congestion came back.I might try this rinse again a few more times over the course of a few days to see if I have more permanent results until I can get with an ENT myself.
I followed the directions online exactly and it did actually work for me, so even if it's something temporary, I'd certainly consider trying it at your own risk until you can see your ENT.
Keep me posted on your success, and may strength be with you as continue forward as a non smoker! congrats!
Its normal, I went through the same thing for almost a year. It's probably just your lungs and sinuses clearing all that tar and nicotine out.
I found that by mixing a drink of tomato juice, lemon, horseradish and garlic, it helped. I also found that something called "Ocean" really helped to relieve the dry stuffy sinuses. Using a chest rub like vicks and a vaporizer with
vicks really helped too.
I'm in the same boat, I quit smoking in April 2010 before that I was on 3 different nasal sprays, Clartin, Nasal decongestants. as well as any other OTC that I could take for this problem, I been to ears, nose and thoat Docs, had CT and MRI's of not only my sinus' but of my whole face and upper chest to see what is causes these problems...Nothing..all came back clear. the doc said that there was a little spect of pollution in the sinus' but that 98.5 % of the population has that problem..Anyhoo.. After some research and experiementing with doc's permission.. I started taking Vitamin C 500 mg once a day, Vitamin E 400, once a day a mulit-vitamin. As well as using a saline rinse 3 times a day using the technique described above( tilting your body as to where you feel your breathing in salt water.. AND YES ITS UNCOMFORTABLE THE FIRST FEW TIMES but after a while your used to it) I also had removed all carpets from home and things that hold allergents. I changed my diet to include whole grains,lots of veggies,fruit, and hardly any dairy ( as dairy can cause mucus build-up) I drink or try to drink at least a gal of plain water a day to stay hydrated.
I also try to walk at least a mile everyday to get fresh air. I also tried a techique that works for a while with also immente but not lasting results: Get two pails of water, one as hot as possible without causing burns, and one as cold as possible but not ice.. now place your bare feet in the hot water pail, for 3 min, now quickly in the cold water for 3 min, continue timing 3 min for each pail, until the hot pail is no longer hot ( warm but not luke warm) these process is said to cause your blood from your head to go to your feet in a manner that clears the head, ears, nose... I tried this and found it works well for a little while.
Its now been 7 months and my breathing is down to a nearly mangable level ( I'm not in the ER every other night) I still having trouble sleeping night due to the nasal congestion and the feeling of drowning.. I'm down to using one nasal spray, clartin-D, and all my vitamins....I'm in hopes that in time that I can stop taking the nasal sprays and my sinus's will function properly..I just got to remember to keep doing the rinses and using steam treatments even when I feel good..
I hope this may help
Hey mate, I also smoke for ten years then quit cold turkey, ever since then I have had nothing but blocked sinuses and bad ears, bad headaches. Taking sudofed at the moment but steam therapy does relieve it wonders only it doesn't last long. I may have to be reffered to an ear nose and throat specailist so if its really bad then I would as to be reffered too. Hope your better soon. Ema
I, like yourself, was also a smoker for 10 years. I have a history of allergies to dust, mold, some pet dander, ragweed and pollen. Since I quit smoking 10 months ago, my nose has been clogged up or running non stop and I have experienced on and off sneezing. None of the over the counter allergy medications have worked for me nor has the netipot and the allergist I went to see was a joke. I don't know if quitting smoking has anything to do with this extreme change in my sinuses and nasal congestion but, I can not take it any longer ! Is there anyone who has a legitimate explanation or answer for me ?
I quit smoking just over a month ago.
I have the same congestion and sinus headaches as all of you.
It is definitely from from quitting. The body is cleaning and repairing itself.
All we can do is try what ever we can to ease the symptoms until
the body heals. We abused our sinuses, throat and lungs for years,
it takes time for that damage to resolve itself. I know this because
I have a family member who quit a few years ago and had the same
congestion, headache symptoms as us. It would get better for a few days then come back.
That cycle went on for 3 - 4 months.
It will get better, we have to be patient and stay strong.
I quit just over a month ago, too. It's unreal how awful I feel. Same symptoms as most of you, sinuses are a complete mess, sneezing, headaches, occasional wheezing, constantly clearing my throat. I'm on quarantine from my friends and co-workers because they think I'm sick all the time. I quit because I found out I was pregnant, so I can't even take anything to try to make myself feel better. I'm glad to read that quitting smoking is most likely the cause of these symptoms, I was beginning to worry. From everything I've read about quitting I have yet to come across anything which states these as possible side effects when you quit smoking.
I quit Jan 2 2012. I also am suffering with a terrible cough and congestion. I read that this happens when you quit smoking, can last for a few months. Hope not, it's brutal. seems I felt better smoking.
Im the same way, i quit in september, and been sick ever since, sinus problems, and never had a sinus problem in my whole life, til i quit smoking, after 10 years, cold turkey as well. But had tubes in my ears when i was little til the age of 14, i started smoking at the age of 12, i quit when i was 22, and am now 23.. sometimes i wish i didnt quit smoking..
I smoked for about 10 years as well and quit about 4 months ago. I don't have congestion but sinus pain. The doctors says its inflamed but don't know why. They think its because of that. I had allegery tests, negative. They did blood and CT scan, all good! They prescribed flownaze which works a bit but I think waiting it out is hopefully the key. I assume its from the quitting since nothing else is going on.
I quit smoking about 7 months ago, cold turkey, and my sinuses have been stopped up ever since. It is horrible, it affects my vision, and I can't even drink ice cold water or alcohol because of the vision thing. I have been to an ENT had catscans on my sinus cavities but they are clear. Been to the allergist and had the prick test on my back and arm, not allergic to anything, Nothing seems to work (nasal spray, clairatin, netti pot, etc.) I think the only option left is to have surgery and remove my nasal passage and replace it with tubes (I think that's how it works).
I have recently quit smoking myself 3 months ago and for the last 4 weeks my sinuses have gone into overdrive. I mean I am going through nearly a box of 120 tissues per day. Out of the 4 weeks I have had to use tissues every single day and only about 7 of the days were alright after the morning nose runs. Half of the time has been non stop drips from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep. Fortunately it has not bothered me when I go to sleep, it seems to stop and my sinuses stay dry until I wake up and then it continues. Sometimes it affects my bronchial tubes making it wheezy to breathe but once the lungs “dry” out I am back to normal except the sinuses. My nose has been red raw for the 4 weeks, but I can deal with it. I just thank God I don’t smoke anymore, and I pray that my body heals fully. I have noticed that it is aggravated by diet and dehydration. I also notice that hot showers clear up the symptoms very well as well as foods that are excellent expectorants and blood stimulants such as ginger, cinnamon, spices, etc. I also quit caffeine with my quitting smoking. I am going to try a water fast for 10-21 days to speed up the healing process.
Howdy everyone.... so... I, like all of you people, have quit smoking and noticed F-ed up sinuses... I tried a bunch of methods, just like you all too. Nothing has brought any relief. Then I started to apply some deductive reasoning. It went like this: If I smoked for many years, habitually, and suddenly quit, then my sinuses become considerably negatively affected. Next... If no form of physical treatment brings lasting relief, then the root of the problem is not physical. But how is it possible to remedy a nonphysical problem when the only means available with which to use are physical?
Alright, people, now try to stay open-minded here.
This whole experience has lead me to the unconventional conclusion that the cause of my chronically aggravated sinuses is a spiritual lack. Through smoking for many years my mind had developed habitual patters of thought and... existences, i guess.... (I don't know quite how to put it into words) My physical self, my body, became conditioned to the smoking... addicted, but different from the nicotine sense. So when that necessary substance, routine, process, etc., was suddenly removed, it compromised some of the foundation of my conditioned mind so that a void was made manifest.
So I started meditating. Yes, Meditation, folks. I have been doing it just over one month. The first week I spent 10 minutes per day, just after I woke up, sitting in a chair, but not leaning back so my spine was straight. Attentively I placed my attention the the air flowing in and out of my body. Thoughts would come into my mind and I would GENTLY (to be gentle and noncritical is KEY here) return my attention to my breathing, but without actually changing my breathing. The second week I sat for 11 minutes. The third, for 12 minutes, and so on... Now I am sitting on the chair with a straight back for 15 minutes just after I wake up, just before dawn.
This process has been underway for just over a month and I see considerable improvement with my sinuses (and nearly ever other area of my life). Often times, toward the beginning of the endeavor I would have to break the meditation to blow my nose or wipe that annoying, creeping snot away. But a faithful, gentle return to the breath has helped me. So just like, yall, nothing worked for me. And that's the case in point. NOTHING, i.e., No-THING, actually DID help me.
Cast my story into the wind or take heed of it. It is working for me, and all I want to do is help. It seems we are all in the same boat. Nothing works for any of us, but I seemed to have found a way. Take it or leave it, and good luck to you all. And good job for quitting smoking, yall are inspirational. Bye for now.
Very interesting, so much so I think benefit to the "community" of sufferers could be realized by taking your experience and putting it under its own subject, perhaps something like Subject: Use of meditation to clear nasal congestion
Sorry if I created a dumb title, but it is just a suggestion - I will consider your approach but think I, and others, would benefit from more details on how to meditate - seems your method is to focus on breathing, and "gently" forcing the mind to "Stay on Subject". This sounds a similar to another mind control I'm working on to be able to manage dreaming problems. The method is called "lucid dreaming". Not trying to side-track, just related to taking control of the mind to one's personal benefit.
In my case, I smoked for about 30 years, to age 45, then quit cold turkey. I immediately started an exercise program that resulted in being a exercise runner. I never had any sinus or nasal problems - and I smoked cigarettes at about 1 pack a day (more on weekends) and pipes and a few cigars.
However, after not smoking for about 25 years (ya, I'm an old guy) I developed nasal congestion problems, but mostly when trying to sleep, not so much when up and about. I had to give up running because of heart problems... I wonder it that is what triggered my congestion. Afrin works great, by the way, but can't be used for long periods, even though I do have long runs of using it just at night.
In any case, I'm all for a new thread that expands on your idea/method. It shouldn't require a lot more work on your part if you are willing. I will be a reader/contributor.
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