Runny nose: symptoms, causes and treatment (2023)


Runny nose: symptoms, causes and treatment (1)

What is a runny nose?

A runny nose is mucus that drips or "runs" from the nose. It can be caused by cooler outside temperatures, acalled, flu or allergies.

"Rhinorrhea," a term often used in conjunction with the phrase "runny nose," is the thin, usually clear discharge that you can see. Another term you may come across often is "Sniffles.” Rhinitis is inflammation of the nasal tissues.

When a cold virus or allergen like pollen or dust first enters your body, it irritates the lining of your nose and sinuses (or the air-filled sacs around your face), and your nose starts producing a large amount of clear mucus. This mucus traps bacteria, viruses, or allergens and helps flush them out of your nose and sinuses.

After two to three days, the mucus may change color and become white or yellow. Sometimes the mucus can also turn a greenish color. All of this is normal and does not mean that an infection is present.

How does your nose protect your body?

Your breathing begins in your nose. Air enters the lungs through the nose. It helps filter, humidify, heat, or cool the air that passes through it so the air that reaches your lungs is clean.

A special coatingmucous membrane, or moist tissue, covers the area inside the nose and is made up of many mucus-producing glands. When bacteria, allergens, dust or other harmful particles get into your nose, they are trapped by the mucus. The mucus contains antibodies or enzymes that kill unwanted bacteria and viruses.

The mucosa also contains cilia, small hair-like structures. The cilia are in constant motion, transporting accumulated harmful particles and the mucus in which they are trapped through the nose and down the throat. It is then swallowed and destroyed by the stomach acid. Mucus and particles can also be coughed up or sneezed out.

When outside temperatures get cold, the rate of this process slows. Often the mucus stays in the nose and then drips or drips.

Why is mucus an important part of the respiratory system?

Mucus is necessary to keep the airways moist and functioning properly. The mucus not only prevents harmful particles from entering the lungs, but also contains antibodies that help destroy the bacteria. When too much mucus is produced, your body wants to get rid of it, which causes you to cough and spit out the extra mucus and expel it through your nose.

Possible causes

Why does a runny nose occur? What causes a runny nose?

Your runny nose can have one or more causes. Possible causes are:

  • allergies
  • cold temperatures.
  • a cold
  • Gripe.
  • Gustatory rhinitis, a form of nonallergic rhinitis that causes a runny nose when eating certain foods.

Is a runny nose a symptom ofCOVID-19?

Yes: "Stuffy or runny nose." Other common symptoms include:

  • Tos.
  • shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.
  • fever or chills.
  • Fatigue.
  • Headache.
  • New loss of taste or smell.
  • muscle or body pain.
  • Sore throat.
  • Diarrhea.
  • nausea or vomiting.

What other symptoms can accompany a runny nose?

Postnasal drip is a side effect of excess mucus. It occurs when mucus runs down the throat and is swallowed, which can cause a cough or sore throat.

Sometimes a runny nose and a stuffy or stuffy nose are seen together. Congestion occurs when the tissues lining the nose become swollen, making it difficult to breathe. The swelling is due to inflamed blood vessels. Mucus may start coming out of your nose.

A runny nose due to a cold or flu can be accompanied by fatigue, sore throat, cough, facial pressure, and sometimes fever.

A runny nose due to allergies can be accompanied by sneezing and itchy, watery eyes.

Can a runny nose cause a sore throat?


Can a runny nose cause an ear infection?

Rhinitis, an inflammation of the nasal tissues, can sometimes lead to complications, including a middle ear infection.

Is a runny nose contagious?

A runny nose itself isn't contagious, but it's often a symptom of an illness, like the common cold, that can be passed from person to person.

care and treatment

How do I stop my runny nose?

The runny nose will likely stop on its own. In general, you do not need treatment. But there are exceptions.

What Type of Health Care Provider Can Treat My Runny Nose?

If treatment is required, your GP can help you. If your runny nose turns out to be a symptom of a more serious condition, your doctor may refer you to an ear, nose, and throat specialist.

When should I see a doctor to treat a runny nose?

A runny nose usually goes away on its own. However, a doctor should be contacted if:

  • The symptoms persist for more than 10 days and there is no improvement.
  • Symptoms are severe or unusual.
  • Discharge from your young child's nose comes from one side only and is green, bloody, foul smelling, or if you have any other reason to suspect a foreign object may be stuck in the nose.

Your doctor will perform a physical exam to make sure your runny nose is not a symptom of a more serious condition.

How do I get rid of my runny nose? What medications should I try?

Prescription medications like antibiotics aren't necessary to treat a runny nose, which usually gets better on its own. Sometimes an over-the-counter decongestant medication can help adults, but it may not be appropriate if you have certain medical conditions or are taking other medications. Check with your doctor to find out which over-the-counter medications are right for you.

Typically, the best treatment for a runny nose includes:

  • Rest.
  • Drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
  • Use a saline nasal spray to relieve symptoms. Limit nasal spray decongestant use to no more than a few days, as directed on package labels.
  • A cold mist bedside humidifier can combat congestion made worse by dry winter air.

Do not give over-the-counter cold medicine to a child under the age of four unless recommended by your doctor.

What treatment is recommended for a runny nose due to allergy?

  • Stay indoors when pollen levels are high, usually early morning and on windy days.
  • During allergy season, keep the windows closed and use the air conditioning if possible.
  • Wear a dust mask when working outdoors. Change your clothes and shower immediately upon entering.
  • Avoid contact with cats and dogs if you are sensitive to pet dander.

In addition, there are many safe and effective over-the-counter medications that help control allergy symptoms, such as: B. steroid nasal sprays and oral antihistamines. If symptoms are severe, your doctor may recommend prescription medications or refer you to an allergist for testing and targeted therapy.

What are some simple home remedies for a runny nose?

Over-the-counter saline (salt water) drops can be gently sprayed into the nostrils to help clear mucus from the nose. The fluid and mucus can then be suctioned out of the nose with a rubber syringe or balloon.

Other home remedies you can try are:

  • Essential Ole.
  • Drink hot teas.
  • Steam Facial.
  • hot shower
  • I can not.
  • Spicy food.

Can a runny nose be prevented?

Good hygiene is important and can often help stop the spread of germs. A runny nose is a symptom of some contagious diseases. Here are some simple tips to prevent the spread of these germs:

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Discard used tissues after blowing or blowing your nose.
  • Stay away from people who have a cold or infection.
  • Eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly to boost your immune system.
  • Cough and sneeze into the crook of your arm, not your hand.
  • Clean and disinfect common surfaces such as tables and counters, toys, doorknobs, and bathroom fixtures.

When to call the doctor

When does a doctor need to treat a runny nose?

Again, the runny nose should go away on its own. However, if symptoms are severe, last more than 10 days, or if you are caring for a child whose discharge is unilateral, turns green, bloody, or smells bad, you should see a doctor.

A note from the Cleveland Clinic

Who hasn't had a runny nose? A runny or "runny" nose when you have a cold or if you have a cold, flu, or allergies is common. It doesn't usually mean there's an infection or anything serious. Remember to use good hygiene practices to avoid a runny nose or similar problems. See a doctor if you or your child have unusual nasal discharge.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Kareem Mueller DO

Last Updated: 11/07/2022

Views: 6274

Rating: 4.6 / 5 (66 voted)

Reviews: 81% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Kareem Mueller DO

Birthday: 1997-01-04

Address: Apt. 156 12935 Runolfsdottir Mission, Greenfort, MN 74384-6749

Phone: +16704982844747

Job: Corporate Administration Planner

Hobby: Mountain biking, Jewelry making, Stone skipping, Lacemaking, Knife making, Scrapbooking, Letterboxing

Introduction: My name is Kareem Mueller DO, I am a vivacious, super, thoughtful, excited, handsome, beautiful, combative person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.