In many ways, dry sinuses are the opposite of a sinus drainage problem. In some cases the sinuses can become dry, which causes discomfort, pain, and sometimes nosebleeds.
What Causes Dry Sinuses?
Dry sinuses can result from many different causes, including:
- Dry, Warm Air – When it’s winter, many of us like to crank up the heat. This can causes the sinuses to become dry, however. Similarly, living somewhere with a very low humidity (such as a desert environment) may also cause dry sinuses.
- An Infection – Many dry sinus cases are the result of an infection. Viruses, bacteria, or funguses can invade the sinus cavities and dry them out.
- Allergies – Allergies may often cause the sinuses to become dry. If you’re also experiencing other allergy symptoms like dry, itchy eyes or skin, try an over-the-counter allergy medication. Allegra, Claritin, and Zyrtec often work well in these cases.
- Dehydration – Our bodies require lots of water in order to function. The sinuses in particular need quite a bit of water in order to stay moist. Not getting enough water can therefore lead to dry sinuses.
- Blowing Your Nose too Forcefully or too Often – If you’re suffering from a cold, you may dry your sinuses out by blowing your noise too forcefully or too frequently. Try to blow gently and stop blowing if doing so doesn’t produce any mucus.
Symptoms of Dry Sinuses
The symptoms of dry nasal passages are generally very often. A dry, itchy, or painful feeling is usually the first sign. Nosebleeds often occur in cases where sinuses are especially dry. If these symptoms occur, you’re likely suffering from over-dry sinus cavities.
How to Treat Dry Sinuses
Treat dry sinuses by moisturizing the sinus cavities. The following methods work best:
- Conduct a Sinus Rinse – Sinus rinses are a great way to introduce moisture back into dry sinuses. Using the correct saline solution will help ensure that your sinuses stay moist and that the rinse doesn’t dry the sinuses out further. See my instructions on how to preform a sinus rinse.
- Take a Hot Shower or Use a Humidifier - Taking a long, hot shower is a great way to moisten the nasal passages and cure dry sinuses. Breath in the steam with your nose and exhale through your mouth. Alternatively, try using a humidifier at night while sleeping.
- Drink Plenty of Water – If you suffer from dry sinuses, be sure to drink plenty of water! Staying hydrated will prevent your nasal passages from becoming dry in the first place. It’s also a great way to encourage proper sinus drainage. Herbal teas and other “clear” liquids also work well.
- Talk to Your Doctor About Medications – Some medications like diuretics, antihistamines, blood pressure medications , and some psychiatric drugs can cause dehydration. If you take any medicines regularly, talk to your doctor about their side effects to see if they may be leading to dry sinuses. Alcohol is also a frequent culprit.