Allergy, Nose & Sinus

4 Lifestyle Habits That Will Keep Blocked Nose at Bay

December 16, 2022
X Lifestyle Habits That Will Keep Blocked Nose at Bay

We’ve all had a blocked nostril at some point in our lives. While not particularly serious by itself, they’re an uncomfortable experience due to the breathing difficulties they cause. Additionally, they are also usually accompanied by other respiratory symptoms that make the whole ordeal that much worse. There are medications that can help provide relief, but in many cases blocked noses can be either alleviated or prevented by following simple lifestyle changes.

What Causes Blocked Noses

Rhinitis is a common condition that causes blocked nose, along with other symptoms like runny nose, sneezing and itching. Likely due to inflammation, the root causes of Rhinitis are numerous and varied. They range from common allergens, to certain fumes, odours, temperature, environmental changes, smoke, certain foods and medications.

Lifestyle Changes That Can Help With Nasal Congestion


1. Taking A Hot Shower


If you’re wondering how to clear a blocked nose, you might be surprised to hear that a simple shower in some steaming hot water can do wonders to unclog blocked nasal passageways. The increased humidity can thin out the mucus in your nose and reduce inflammation, at least for some temporary comfort. For the same effect, you can get the help of a facial steamer or use a humidifier at home if you live in a dry environment.

How to clear a blocked nose Drink Plenty Of Water


2. Drink Plenty Of Water


If you’re having a blocked nose, it’s important to stay hydrated. Extra fluids help thin mucus and allow it to drain away much more quickly. This also helps reduce the pressure in your sinuses contributing to the relief from nasal congestion. A glass of water every hour or so would be sufficient to reap the benefits.

How to clear a blocked nose Load Up On Antioxidants

3. Quit Smoking

Cigarettes and even secondhand smoke has numerous negative impacts on our respiratory system. Tobacco smoke irritates your upper airway and causes your sinuses to produce more mucus. This can make you more prone to sinus infections as the mucus builds up and does not drain properly, creating a breeding ground for germs. 

If you’re a habitual smoker, you can consider cutting down on the number of cigarettes you’re smoking in a week to improve your quality of life and reduce congestion in your nasal passages. 


4. Keep Your Head Elevated


One of the more difficult experiences when dealing with a stuffy nose is trying to get a good night’s sleep. Nasal congestion tends to be worse at night because it’s harder for your nose and sinuses to drain.

One way to overcome this, is by elevating your head as you sleep. A couple of pillows or cushions would help. If you have a particularly bad case of congestion, combining a humidifier along with a hot shower before bed might improve your condition.

While having a blocked nose is normal from time to time, if you find that you are having recurrent or chronic Rhinitis, it might be an indication that something else is wrong. In such cases it’s best to seek the advice of a trained medical professional for treatment.

Learn more: 8 Common Conditions Treated by ENT Specialists in Singapore

Dr Gan Eng Cern is a ear, nose, and throat specialist in Singapore specialising in high-quality, patient-centric nose and sinusitis care. To find out more and send in your queries, do not hesitate to reach out to us via our contact us page. Our team will be happy to answer your questions and set up an appointment if required.

    When Should You See an ENT Specialist in Singapore?

    • Any ear, nose or throat symptoms that you are troubled with or concerned about
    • Persistent blocked nose with mouth breathing or snoring

    Dr Gan Eng Cern

    Dr Gan Eng Cern is a distinguished ENT doctor with fellowship training. In addition to his clinical practice as an ear, nose and throat specialist in Singapore, Dr. Gan has contributed to the academic field as a Senior Clinical Lecturer at the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore. He is recognised for his extensive research work, with numerous contributions to reputable international ENT journals. Dr Gan is also highly sought after as a speaker and has shared his surgical knowledge as a surgical dissection teacher at various prominent ENT conferences and courses.


    • 2020 – Reader’s Choice Gold Award for Best ENT Specialist (Expat Living Singapore)
    • 2016 – Best Educator Award (Eastern Health Alliance)
    • 2016 – “Wow” Award (Patient Compliment)
    • 2014 – Eastern Health Alliance Caring Award – Silver
    • 2014 – 19th Yahya Cohen Memorial Lectureship (awarded by the College of Surgeons, Academy of Medicine Singapore for best scientific surgical paper)
    • 2012 – Human Manpower Development Award (Ministry of Health, Singapore)
    • 2007 – Singhealth Best Doctor Award


    • MBBS – Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)
    • MRCS (Edin) – Member of the Royal College of Surgeons Edinburgh, United Kingdom
    • MMed (ORL) – Master of Medicine in ENT (National University of Singapore)
    • FAMS – Fellow of the Academy of Medicine Singapore

    Why Choose Dr Gan Eng Cern


    Reliable & Reputable ENT Expert

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