Are you sick and tired of waking up with a stuffy nose? Let’s face it, the feeling of a stuffy nose in itself is annoying.
It becomes even more annoying when you have to wake up every single day wondering if you’re catching a cold or your nose is just stuffy.
It may be surprising for you to hear but a lot of people wake up every single morning with a stuffy nose and there are a few reasons as to why that might happen.
Early morning nasal congestion or stuffy nose, as we call it, is also known as rhinitis. There are several reasons or causes for this to be happening to you on a daily basis.
Why Do I Wake Up With A Stuffy Nose?
The most common reason for early morning nasal congestion is allergens.
Moreover, it can also happen because of the presence of irritants, smoking, or any kind of changes happening in your body.
Suffering from a dry nose? Find out more here.
Causes of a Stuffy Nose
Studies reveal that over 74% of the world population are exposed to over 2 to 7 allergens in their bedrooms every night. Therefore, every time someone rolls over or pulls the blanket closer they are technically sending potential allergens up their airways.
This further causes inflammation of your airways. The situation can be worse for people who allow pets on their beds.
To know more, pay close attention to the list of allergens that could cause nasal congestion.
Dust mites are one of the leading causes of most allergies. Contrary to popular belief, dust mite allergies are actually caused by dust mite feces instead of dust mites themselves. This causes sneezing, itchy eyes, and morning nasal congestion.
Moreover, people who suffer from dust mite allergies may have to take precautions all year round to prevent allergy attacks and sickness.
Therefore, to reduce dust mite infestation in your homes and apartments, keep the following points in your mind.
1. Make sure to wash your bedding in warm water frequently.
2. Dust mites thrive in warmer temperatures therefore set your thermostat accordingly.
3. Use allergen reducing covers to minimize the presence of allergens on your mattresses and pillows
4. Avoid using carpets and materials that may favor the growth of dust mites and provide them with a hospitable environment.
5. Dust mites thrive in humidity. Therefore, use a humidifier to regulate the humidity inside your home.
6. Vacuum and clean your homes regularly to get rid of dust mites.
Pollen is a big contributor to seasonal allergies during spring and autumn and can cause quite a lot of discomfort. Pollens generally enter through AC ventilation systems and open windows.
This causes a rapid increase in nasal mucus or swelling up of the tissues around the nose amongst people who suffer from pollen allergies.
This in turn causes sneezing and nasal congestion. Therefore, the ultimate solution to prevent nasal congestion is to minimize the presence of pollen.
That can be accomplished by the following methods:
1. Make sure to limit your outdoor presence when pollen presence is at an all-time high.
2. If you do have to work outside make sure to hand over the work to someone that doesn’t suffer from pollen allergies.
3. Use an air filter to make sure that you are breathing clean air.
4. Consult your doctor for allergy medications, immunotherapy, or prescription drugs.
5. Try alternative remedies or acupuncture. Recent studies have revealed that acupuncture may be a treatment option for pollen allergies.
Mold can be found in almost all homes and the infestation can be worse in households where water leakage and high humidity is an issue. Therefore, exposure to this mold may be the reason why you might be waking up with a congested nose.
Therefore make sure to look for places where you might find the mold and clean it as soon as possible. Molds can generally be found in bathrooms, basements, vents, gutters, trash bins and garbage cans, refrigerator drip pans.
Any surface where water leakages may have dampened the top surface. There are professionals that deal with the cleaning up of molds. Therefore, you may call them if you are in need of assistance. Antihistamines can generally help you minimize the effects of a mold allergy.
However, if antihistamines do not provide you with any relief consult a doctor or allergist immediately.
These allergies are mostly caused due to pet dander. If you are accustomed to sharing your bed with your pet this might be a reason why you wake up with nasal congestion. To prevent allergies you might want to limit your cuddling time with your pets.
Additionally, you can also bathe your pets with products that prevent allergies (anti-allergen shampoos). You can also make sure to keep the pet litter box out of your sleeping or resting area.
You can install hardwood flooring to prevent the settling of pet dander on your carpeting and furniture.
Irritants can be a factor that you should consider while determining the true cause of your nasal congestion. Irritants cause your nasal passages to swell up in size during the nighttime.
This causes discomfort in the later hours of the night and morning. If you think that Irritants may be the reason for your discomfort then pay close attention to the list of common irritants given below.
Gastro-esophageal reflux disease or (GERD)
This is a chronic condition where the contents of the patient’s stomach flow back through the alimentary canal and into the patient’s throat or nasal passages.
Rhinitis is commonly associated with GERD and the situation gets worse at night as the patient changes their sleeping position. There are a few ways to help GERD symptoms-
1. Try to raise one end of your mattress.
2. Prevent consumption of late-night meals and snacks.
3. Do not wear clothing that binds your waist. Wear pajamas or clothing that doesn’t require binding the waist.
Rhinitis may be a problem if you are a habitual smoker or are exposed to smoke at a certain point in your day. Chronic sinus problems may be an issue in the involvement of any form of smoking.
Decongestants may be helpful however, please consult a doctor for proper medications and treatments.
Hormones or Changes in the Body
A significant amount of pregnant and menstruating women suffer from nasal congestion due to hormonal changes. Studies reveal that 39% percent of pregnant women suffer from pregnancy-related rhinitis or nasal congestion.
There are certain things that may cause relief from nasal congestion. Washing your nose with saltwater, exercising, and nasal dilators may be helpful.
Identifying the root cause of your nasal congestion may ultimately be your best option. Therefore, taking steps to reduce allergens and irritants can help a lot to minimize your discomfort.
You can try medication and natural remedies to lessen your discomfort However, consulting a doctor or a medical professional might be your best option in case your symptoms are causing you too much discomfort.