Colder weather usually brings dry air along with it—and cranking the heat indoors can reduce what moisture’s left. The one-two punch for dryness can leave your nasal passages irritated and foster symptoms of sinusitis, but you can take precautions to keep your body healthy through the winter.
Why does winter air affect your sinuses? First, it can dry your nasal passages. And second, when mucus can’t quickly pass through properly moisturized nasal passages, the mucus itself can dry out, thicken and alleviate any sinus-infection symptoms already developing.
Ideally for your sinus health, your home should remain from 35 to 45 percent relative humidity. If you get static shocks frequently, then your environment could be getting dry.
Consider these tips to help avoid sinusitis symptoms in the dry winter months.
- Use a humidifier. When your air is moisturized, it’s easier for your body to stay moisturized.
- Take in some steam. A few times a day for a few minutes a session, sit in your bathroom with the door closed and a hot shower running.
- Remember the H2O. If the air is dry, you can help compensate by keeping your body hydrated.
- Avoid caffeine. Dehydrating beverages, such as soda and coffee, can worsen the impact of dry winter air.
In the winter months and throughout the year, feel free to visit our doctors to help keep your sinus infections at bay. We’ll help you develop a customized plan to help manage—and prevent—your health woes.