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Post-nasal drip

I have been having problems with mu sinuses for a year now and its completely affected my life, I am afraid of social situations. I have ear pressure, pain, congestion and worst of all a bad smell which comes from my nose. It's so bad I can barely sit in a rome with people, people hold their nose around me especially when I speak. I had a CT scan it showed I had inferior hypertrophy on the right side of my maxillary sinus, sinusitis, and a mucus retention cyst on the right side.

Finally, I had turbinate cautery to clear the turbinate hypertrophy it has helped I can breathe finally, yet the smell hasn't diminshed at all. My ENT said it was from accumulation of post-nasal drip, which sounds unreasonable. Yet, this smell is really bad. People cough and quickly move away from me, I mean even people 5-6ft away, I feel as if I am contagious. The doctor put me on Astelin, it has dried up the phelgm I usally have but the smell still hasn't lessened. It's only been 3 days but I've been living this nightmare for a year, I'd hate to get my hopes up that I could be cured.

Does anyone know whether this is where the smell originates from? I thought it was my breathe because how could a smell come from your nose yet it has. It's really embarrassing because people are less than nice about it, my dating life has suffered and I've felt all alone on this.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
65 Responses
Avatar universal
If you still have your tonsils, the smell may be coming from them.  When post-nasal drip goes down the back of the throat, it will often drip over the tonsils causing you to cough or sort of choke like your finger is too far back in the mouth and you get the choke reflex.  This drip doesn't always get cleaned off and the nasal drip along with saliva can build up on the tonsil.  Bacteria growing on this can cause a really bad oral odor that is not alleviated by brushing.  You can try gargling with salt water, you can go to a dentist and have the tonsils "washed" off.  If this is your problem, (it can be diagnosed by the dentist), the only way to permanently "cure" the problem is to have the tonsils removed.  good luck
Avatar universal
I feel ur pain.  I had surgery because i had a deviated septum.  I thought this was going to clear all my problems!!  I can finally breath through both my nostrils, but i still have post nasal drip.  I hate it because it smells. I have tried everything.  I has the surgery thinking it would take care of my nasal drip and it didn't. It's thick, gross, and causes bad breath.  I shy away from speaking closely to someone because i am scared that they can smell my bad breath.  I went to a dentist thinking it was my teeth.  He said my teeth were perfect and told me to go see an ENT.  That is how all this got started.  I dont know what to do anymore and i feel very hopeless sometimes.  Please if you find out anything, PLEASE let me know.
Avatar universal
Well so far I have yet to find a cure. The post-nasal drip has lessened a bit but I still have pretty bad breath. It's embarassing and truly bothers me because I've done everthing I can to fix it. Each doctors seems to think it'll go away on its own but so far it hasn't.

Avatar universal
Hello Crystal,
    I read your comment and I can very much sympathize with your problem.  Getting your tonsils removed is not the answer. During my research I have read that having them removed will not cure your bad breath.  You need to get to the source of the problem.  Post nasal drip is a problem I have been researching for a year now.  Hopefully I can help you.  I currently have post nasal drip and it is leaving very quickly.  I know you are more concerned about bad breath problems because it can effect your life, relationships, and self-esteem.  But the good news is that what I'm using cures that too.  I'm using products called therabreath.  The doctor who created the products is named Katz.  He started his research because his daughter suffered from the same embarrassing problem.  I'm using all of his products.  I suggest you use the starter kit and don't take any short cuts.  You will only waste money.  This is a system that will give you continuous fresh breath if you use it correctly.  You need the toothpaste, floss, mouthwash, nasal drops, throat spray, and mints. I also purchased his nasal/sinus irrigation system.  It was $90 and worth every penny.  It totally clears post nasal drip getting all that sticky mucus that clogs your throat and causes bad breath.  I would have paid $300 to get my life back. (lol)
     The irrigation system gets to the source of the problem.  You need to alternate using the oral products as well so the problem doesn't come back. Do not waste your money on anymore over the counter oral products that will only make the problem worse because they contain sugar.  His products have oxigen bubbles in them; exactly what the mouth needs since it doesn't get any.  Finding his products were a miracle.  I think I have cried my last tear and hopefully you will to after reading this.
     I just hate that I didn't find this sooner.  I suffered from this embarrassing problem for a year and it totally effected my relationship. I am a very social, flirty, confident, outgoing individaul.  But I must say that this was a very humbling experience.
    Go to google and search Therabreath Products or type in www.therabreath.com.  You will find confidence in his articles and testimonies of others who share the same problem as you.  Hope I have helped you.  Good luck!!
     Also be sure to look at food you should minimize or avoid while treating this problem.

Avatar universal
I forgot to mention that you should stop wasting your money on doctors and dentist that are only going to ignore you and give you false hope that it will go away.  It doesn't.  It will only get worse.  I had mild post nasal that turned into bad breath you could smell only when speaking to a foul odor that came from my nose.  I also hated social setting when once I loved he spotlight.  I was tired of others covering their nose, turning their heads, coughing, and moving away.  Totally embarrasing.  You are not alone.  You will read that half of all people suffer from this problem. Pls let me know if I have helped you.
Avatar universal
Hi thanks for the response. I tried the Therabreath products a few months back--they didn't help. I have the irrigation system and I bought the mouthwash, toothpaste, and the breath spray. I used it all for weeks, it didn't help at all. It didn't remove the white-coating from my tongue either. I was so frustrated. I know they have other products as well but I didn't see the point in buying them because it didn't help. I even got the sinus drops it made the smell worse, It created a bad breath mixed with sinus drops smell-not so great. lol

Its great to hear that it worked for you and that you getting back to enjoying the spotlight. I was the same way but my self-esteem has definately changed this past year.

If you have any other suggestions I am all ears.

Avatar universal
First I want to say that I'm sorry the products didn't work for you.  Don't get me wrong I felt the same way at first, which was the reason I mentioned that you shouldn't take any short-cuts when using these products because you will only waste money.  Initially, I was only using over the counter therabreath products (toothpaste, mouthwash, and throat spray) and they didn't work alone.  I did this for about a month. I didn't give up because I had tried everything else before and this was the last resort.
When I purchased the irrigation system, I saw a difference.  Like you, I was still frustrated because my bad breath didn't immediately leave.  But I read the book that came with the system in and out.  I used the irrigation system 3 times a day for 4 days straight and noticed that I didn't have that foul smell coming from my nose.  I also had less mucus in my throat, but my bad breath wasn't totally gone.  I kept using it and this makes 2 weeks for me and I have fresh breath now.  However, I have noticed that if I don't go through the steps thoroughly it will come back, but not as bad as before.
I have never had the thick coating on my tongue, so I'm sorry, I don't have any recommendations for that.  The nasal drops also made my breath smell worse at first, but I kept using it.  Now it doesn't.  What I have stop using is therabreath mints and gum because it wasn't working effectively.  Instead I use wrigley's extra sugar-free gum and it works.  I am also using decongestants on days I have excess mucus or post nasal.  I also use their 1 800 no. for any questions.  Don't get discouraged.  I hope you find something that works or give therabreath another try.  
Off the subject, but my last name is Gray and I have a cousin named Crystal Gray.
Avatar universal
It always seems that I forget to mention something. Now, this is going to sound disguisting but if you have post nasal you probably have tonsil stones.  These are small white or yellow stones stuck in the throat.  I discovered I had them one day after trying to cough up some of that sticky mucus.  My first day using the irrigation system, I flushed out three and yesterday three more.  Those things stink really bad.  I know my breath is better after getting rid of those.  Now the decongestant that I'm using is benedril.  I'm not recommending that. It does a great job of drying post nasal but I'm sure it's not healthy to take everyday and besides it makes you sleepy.  I do plan to start using mucinex.  It's another decongestant advertised a lot. I also want you to look into using these therabreath tablets that you desolve in tap water. You can gargle with it and swallow some at night before bed.  It is also a good mouth wash. The reason I kept using the throat spray and nasal drop even though they worsened my bad breath is because they get rid of tonsil stones.  Those play a big role in how your breath smells.  The reason I saw mine flush out in the sink is because I put the tongue sprayer so far back in my throat that I gagged a little.(lol)  I know that sounds crazy, but I was trying to literally get to the source (lol) and it worked.  Again I am not recommending that.  Also go to the site when you get a chance and look at frequently ask questions.  You will find suggestions for that white coating on the tongue.  Let me know if I have helped you.
Avatar universal
Get off your soapbox and stop selling the BS products from Dr Katz and better yet stay off the message boards.   This guys book is not a solution either, but rather a marketing piece for all of his gimics.  

*** Crystal, don't buy into this ****, this person is a plant pitching this guys products! There are solutions that will help mitigate the problem, but you will not find them in a mail order product.  Keep seeing an ENT and if the one your seeing does not help, go see another one until you find a doctor that has experience in this area.  Every city has a list of "Top Doctors" and what their specialties are.  Do some more research and focus your attention on finding a doctor that will listen and actually give your problem the attention it deserves, rather then sending you on your way after a 10 min visit with another perscprition for anti biotics.  
Avatar universal
One thing, which I have recently become aware of, is "metal allergy". While I don't feel it's the source of all ills, I do feel it could be at the root of some problems. The other thing is, how many think of it, as a possible problem. I'm talking about any unnatural substance, we continually have in our bodies. ... false teeth, fillings, piercings, metal pins in broken bones, etc.. The other thing, the metal could be remote from where the problem manifests itself.

Just something to think about, when you are tired of the BS.
Avatar universal
I had the same problem for like 4 years and it has just recently cleared up in a week. i had constant white coting on my tongue, would brush/scrape 3 times a day. i could not talk to people up close. I mean my breath was terrible, people would hold thier nose, cough and turn away. one of my nostrtils would block every now and then. The smell go so bad that i had to stop going out on social occasions.

First thing i did was buy a nasal irrigator machine which passes a saline solution through the nose and sinuses. this helped a little with the blockage but the smell was still there.

The real breakthrough came when i bought grapfruit seed extract 100ml bottle from the internet (there are many brands). this stuff kills bacteria, yeast and fungus.
i first put 12 drops in a glass of water and gargled with it sip by sip and then swallow. i did this 3 times a day after brushing and this stopped my breath and cleared my throat for many hours. (but did not totaly cure it)
I experimented one day and put 15 drops in my irrigator machine with the saline solution in the morning and to my amaisment my breath was fresh all day. after doing this for a week i had no nose blockage and no bad breath whatso ever.

I still brush and tongue scrape morning and night and drink 12 drops in water twice a day. this product has changed my life. i just hope i can help others because i know how life sapping having this curse is.
Avatar universal
Avatar universal
There must be a reason that noone posted since your response.  Could it be that they have all been cured?  Possibly yes.  I tried your suggestion on a whim, immediately I noticed the odor had deminished, I mean immediately.

Now I have been suffering from this debilitating disease/symptom for over 12 years and I have tried everything.  In my mind it started after an over use of antibiotics to fight sinus infections.  I went to ent's, allergists, dentisits, gastro-intestinal docs, psychologists, natural healers, chiropractors, accupuncturists, etc.  I've tried everything including dietary changes, nasal washes, thera-breath, food grade hydrogen peroxide, pharmaceutical grade nystatin, more antibiotics, anxiety meds, virgin oils, sinus massage, saunas, reflexology, steam oils, a thousand different supplements and herbs, etc., etc., etc.  I mean the breath I had was Godzilla like and it did not matter how many times I brushed, gargled, or scraped my tongue.  Gum or mints had no effect.  I used to inhale when I talked to people in order to spare the recipients.  I mean people would duck my conversations better than George Bush ducking a flying shoe.  God help the poor ******* that should happen to draw a seat next to me on a plane.  I would have to pretend to sleep the entire flight in order to save him/her from sheer nausea.  

I am a restauranteur and have the need to be in constant social situations with customers as well as close conversations with my employees.  It has been difficult to say the least.  I have been using the grapefruit extract now for about 5 days and I feel for the first time in years confident enough to talk closely with my employees, friends, and customers again. When I wake in the morning I can literally give my girlfriend a kiss now, exhaling with an open mouth without even brushing my teeth first...it is amazing.  She noticed a immediate difference in my mood.  I am almost certain that the odors were due to a fungal infection of sorts that would produce disgusting smells while attaching itself to stagnent mucus from post nasal drip and drainage.  I was hacking constantly.  I could scrape what seemed like fur off of the back of my tongue at times, especially when I drank milk, soda or beer, ate bread, or had anything sugary to eat.  The mucus would accumulate like you could not imagine, it was like old yogurt that never went away.  I was constatnly clearing my throat or hacking and spitting.  It was truly disgusting.  I would have to keep a waste basket next to my bed to expel the **** throughout the night or I felt like I would choke.  I disgusted myself not to mention the anxiety I felt around my girlfriend and other people.  

Since taking the grapefruit extract the mucus is still present, but less sticky which makes it easier to swallow, and is no longer odorous.  Food tastes better than ever and I no longer have that nasty bitter sour taste constantly in my throat.  I feel like a new man.  I hope to soon get back to living my life.  I went to the dentist today for the first time in 2 years and felt confident having my mouth open for the better part of an hour.  I ate white toast and cereal with real milk for breakfast today and suffered no repercusions.  It feels like a miracle and I want to especially thank you for posting on this board, which I just happen to come across after I googled smelly post nasal drip.  I have been on hundreds of threads hoping to find a cure and this appears to finally be it.  Thank you again!  You are the man or woman?!  My family, friends, employees, customers, and especially my wonderfully tolerant girlfriend of 5 years thanks you as well.

Last thing, I did notice a bit of a tingling or numbing sensation on my tongue since I began using the extract, just wondering if that has happened to you as well and if so how long it takes to go away if ever.  My research on grapefruit seed extract turned up some info this symptom as a possible side effect.  Also, I still do seem to have a fair amount of mucus still, I have not used a nasal irrigator but have used a neti pot with the extract.  Just wondering, did your mucus issue go away more slowly or do you have another suggestion to alleviate that problem?  Thanks in advance.  Rick.
Avatar universal
Holy cow, i'm getting so happy reading about this grapefruit extract.  I thought I had my problem fixed after finding out about the saline wash, it helped keep my breath fresh longer but after 2-4 hours the (AWFUL!!!) smell would come back.  I just came back to this site in hope of finding something and here it is, please god let this work.  I can't do this much longer, I mean this has really mad me suicidal, even when i'm alone it's all I can think about.
Avatar universal
ss1981 or RickGB

I'd really like to contact and maybe have a convo with one of you guys about this issue to be sure we have the same problem.

When i'm sitting in a room with someone say 5 feet away from them, even right after brushing and with gum in my mouth i'm asked, "did you fart"?  I've told people that I did fart before just becuase that's less embarrasing then saying no my breath is just that jacked up.  It almost seems like the bad smell comes out like a fart like it can be somewhat a normal smell but I can still smell that dry cheese kind of smell but then out of nowhere it gets really bad.  Maybe it's just how the smell travels thru the wind.  I have to fix this.  i'm going on 5 years now and to be honest i'm about to give up and look into disability and live alone.
Avatar universal
Hello to all, this message is for ss1981, RickGB, and icantlivelikethis.  Which grapefruit extract brand exactly did you guys use and where can I get it.  PLEEEAAASSE!!! As I’m so desperately looking to get rid of this problem once and for all.  I’m pretty sure you guys know the importance of networking and helping one another…
Avatar universal
So did the grapefruit seed extract work for you icantlivelike this?
Avatar universal
Please let me know what brand of grapefruit seed extract that you used - is it still working for you? And exactly how are you taking it - still 12 drops per glass 3xday?  And what type of irrigation machine did you add the 15 drops of grapefruit seed extract?  I've had this for 15 years, had many surgeries that have not helped and I am desperate!  Please, please answer soon.
Avatar universal
I recently purchased the grapefruit seed extract at a Whole Food Market store and the brand name I used is Nutri Biotic and it hurt like hell when using it and didn’t work a bit.  I tried it the way that ss1981 said and that’s to add15 drops in the irrigator and run it through my nostrils and it hurt like HELL.  It felt like my head was about to get blown off.  I don’t think I use the correct brand, because it made my problem worser.  I return that **** 3 days later and I’m now looking online to find a good one or the one that the others in this forum had use that’s if they ever come back on.  The G.S.E. not only made my post nasal drip problem worser but it made my eyes red immediately upon using it.  I then put 6 drops instead of 15 and it did the same thing with the same results.  Then I said o.k. I’ll use it with just 1 drop and it still gave me the same results as before.  In my honest opinion I don’t think I’m using the right one because if I was I’m sure the results would be different.  I understand that no 2 person are alike but still if these guys have use the same one that I use I’m pretty sure they would’ve mention the pain that it cause in the middle of their face and the red stain that it leaves in the eyes even if the brand had worked for them.  That’s just my experience with using the product. I pray that one of those guys who have seen result in using this product will come back on the forum and tell us which brand they use.
Avatar universal
Did anyone find a cure. My story is like everyone else ....Dr Katz is a waste of money.
Avatar universal
Did you add water or saline to the grapefruit extract? If you irrigated with just the extract alone you would be asking for a nasal-nightmare of pain.  

Avatar universal
Hey JustMein09 I used water with the grapefruit seed extract.  But what's your story???  Do you have PND???  If not what did you use to cure the problem...
Avatar universal
I'm going to try this method too (I also have PND) BUT, you must include the saline.  That's a must!!
Avatar universal
*I tried this and copied a post I made on another page...reference the flip turn method, if you're interested.*  

OK Friggy, I had to give you the update and post this so that it can help others.  I had done the flip turn since Wednesday morning.  Wednesday during the day, the smell coming out of my nose must have been horrible.  People were making faces etc.  When I tested my breath, that was bad too.  I was really upset.  I was so depressed, I didn't even do it in the evening when I got home.  I did it again Thursday morning.  Awful smell from the nose during the day.  People were coughing and saying it smelled on the bus.  I stayed home Friday.  I had battled bad breath for a LONG TIME.  But, the bad smell from the nose was a new thing (which I can't smell/test myself).  It's one thing to just keep your mouth shut, it's a whole other thing to not be able to exhale/breathe without being thoroughly embarrassed.  I stayed home Friday and would not leave my apartment.  I was so upset.  I didn't do any flip turns (though I had planned to).  I stayed home Saturday and did not do any flip turns.  I was still very upset.  Here's the thing.  When I would do them, with the saline I wouldn't get any real gunk out.  It was just thick, clear, with areas of whitish mucus, but nothing extreme.  I went back to this site and saw a post about using grapefruit seed extract and it being a miracle worker.  I had used GSE in my neti pot before and was convinced that this was what brought on the BAD exhalation smell in my nose.  But, I figured I had nothing to lose and added it to my saline solution for the flip turn.  I did it a number of times (laying back on the edge of the bed the way someone suggested in the comments.  This was four in the moring (yes, I stayed up that long b/c I was so upset).  I did a ton of flip turns, holding each one for about 30 seconds or 45...I didn't really time it.  After a series of them (I had gone through maybe two ounces of solution).  I went to pour out the container I had used to expel the solution from my nose, there were BIG SOLID chunks of white stuff in it.  It resembled pieces of crumbled ricotta cheese.  I had never seen anything like it.  There were a whole bunch of these things...as if I had chewed up ricotta and spit it into the container!!  I did it a few more of these.  I didn't get any more ricotta cheese (maybe one little piece that you could barely see) and decided that it was time to go to sleep.  It was 5am.  I brushed my teeth, tongue, gargled w/ GSE in water and went to bed.  I woke up at noon.  I tested my breath by spitting on the back of my hand, letting it air dry and smelling (as I do every morning).  Usually, I catch a whiff immediately.  This time, I had to search HARD to find it.  I eventually did, But the smell was not nearly as putrid.  So, I can say that 7 hrs later (upon waking, no less), my breath's intensity has diminished AND the smell that is released is not as bad.  Usually my breath could smell after an hour and at FULL FORCE.  This is a true miracle for me.  A blessed Sunday.  I thank God for letting me discover your flip turn method and the other post about GSE (putting those two together may have just changed my life).  I don't know about the smell coming from my nose.  I'll have to test it tomorrow.  I'll probably got to the campus health center, tell them I'm sick and as the doctor or nurse if they smell something when I exhale (otherwise I'd just be wayyyy too embarrassed to ask anyone else).   But, yeah I'm going to keep doign this forever.  b/c it can only get better from here.  You know, I had bronchial pneumonia when I was two and always got bronchitis when I was younger (until my mom switched me to soy milk).  I used to drink regular milk all the time.  What I expelled this morning is probably residual from back then...in the '90s!!!  For anyone curious, I bought the Nutribiotic GSE (can be found on amazon or in any healthfood store) and added the amount of GSE they recommended for a nasal rinse to my hypertonic saline solution for the Flip Turn.  The amount of GSE I gargled with was also the amount this company recommended for gargling.  I will also post this on the other forum (the one that told me about the GSE) so that it can help them as well.  I think the Friggy flip turn + GSE can help a lot of people!  Thanks again and have a blessed day!!  Oh, and for people wanting to view either forum, just click on my profile and find the comments I've posted.  That will take you to the other site so you can view the discussions in entirety.  
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