Runny nose and bronchitis: how to inhale properly
The wet and cold weather during the winter months causes many an infection. Medications are usually not necessary, usually the symptoms can be alleviated naturally. Inhaling is one of the most common home remedies for colds. But it only helps if you know how to do it.
Fight colds naturally
Colds are not uncommon in the cold season. For adults, two to four flu infections a year are completely normal. Taking medication is usually not absolutely necessary. There are also plenty of tried and tested home remedies for treating colds. One of them is inhalation. However, it should be done properly to work well.
Pay attention to sufficient fluid intake
If you have caught an infection, you should be careful in any case. It is also important to drink a lot. Due to an increased fluid intake, the stubborn mucus dissolves better and the secretions in the nose are diluted.
Cooking steam inhalations also have an expectorant, secretion-promoting and anti-inflammatory effect. They are particularly recommended for acute sinus infections and respiratory infections such as runny nose, cough and bronchitis.
Chamomile tea instead of pure water
This home remedy for runny nose is very easy to use. Hold your head over a bowl of boiling water and cover yourself and the steam bath with a large towel. The rising vapor is then inhaled for at least ten minutes.
The effect can be enhanced by not only inhaling pure water vapor. For example, you can heat three liters of hot chamomile tea with six tablespoons of plantain juice. Chamomile works well against inflammation and runny nose.
Essential oils enhance the effect
As home remedies for a stuffy nose there are also essential oils from eucalyptus, mountain pine or spruce needles. These loosen stuck secretions in the upper airways and also have a healing effect on inflamed sinuses.
Another option is inhalation with a saline solution. This supports the cleaning function of the mucous membrane. Dried thyme or sage leaves can also be added to the solution.
A milder variant is to let a branch of spruce, fir or mountain pine simmer in a large saucepan with water on the stove at the lowest setting, while the ethereal steam is distributed in the room and inhaled "along the way".
Prefer to breathe in through your mouth or nose?
Colds are usually inhaled two to three times a day for at least ten minutes. If symptoms in the nose, such as an inflammation of the nose, are to be alleviated, the nose should be breathed in and out again.
However, those who use the steam bath against bronchitis are better advised to inhale and exhale through the mouth so that the mucus of the upper respiratory tract is not transported into the bronchi.
If dizziness occurs when inhaling, take a break and breathe more slowly when restarting.
Inhaler, ultrasonic nebulizer or nasal douche
In addition to the steam bath over a bowl, there are other inhalation options. For example, some people rely on an inhaler that delivers water vapor up to 80 degrees in a targeted manner through the mouth and nose into the upper respiratory tract. With this method, the eyes are not irritated by essential oils.
According to experts, however, the inhaler does little if you want to loosen the mucus of the lower respiratory tract. In this case, an ultrasonic or jet nebulizer is recommended. This produces tiny droplets that moisturize the bronchi and transport the mucus upwards.
Last but not least, the nasal douche should also be mentioned here, which has clear advantages, among other things, for inflammation of the nasal mucosa. The results of a study were published a few months ago, which showed that rinsing can help these patients better than inhalation. (ad)