How to Stop a Runny Nose Fast

A runny nose can make you feel absolutely miserable. It’s also tough to deal with when you have a busy day and can’t be holding a tissue to your face all the time. Learning how to stop a runny nose fast is valuable information that can help you get through the day while your cold or allergies work themselves out.

But even as you are learning how to do that, keep in mind that it runs for a reason. This is happening because of increased mucus production in the nasal passages, which is often the result of the body trying to get rid of something, like allergens or the flu. If your runny nose is accompanied by other problems, such as fever or sore throat, you might need to see a doctor.

12 Easy Home Remedies for Stopping Runny Nose

There are many over-the-counter medicines for a runny nose, but they often have unpleasant side effects like drowsiness. Many simple home remedies can give you instant relief and decrease the intensity of your symptoms, without any side effects.

1. Clear It with Salt Water

Mix regular table salt, about half a teaspoon, into two cups of distilled water. Very carefully use a small dropper to put drops of this into your nose. Inhale very gently to pull it into your nostrils, but not too hard! Then gently blow your nose. This will reduce secretions.

2. Steam It Out

Set a bowl of very hot water on the table. Learn over the bowl, putting a towel over your head to catch the steam. Breathe as deeply as you can for at least ten minutes. For even more effectiveness, add a few drops of menthol or eucalyptus oil to the water.

3. Use Ginger

You can make tea from ginger root, inhale the steam of hot water that has been infused with ginger, or chew on a few slices of raw ginger that has been sprinkled with salt. You can also use ginger cough drops to relieve the runny nose.

4. Garlic

Just as with ginger, you can create tea or soup with garlic, or you can chew on pieces of it throughout the day. You can also take supplements of garlic that can help with a runny nose in the long term, such as for those with allergies.

5. Honey

Mix honey with warm water, at least two tablespoons of honey to one cup of water. Then add a bit of lemon juice and cinnamon, if desired, and drink it two or three times a day. You can also go with honey lozenges.


6. Stuff It Up

Use a tissue to create a small ball, then stuff this into your nose. It doesn’t look pretty, but it does block up the runny nose and allow your sore upper lip a chance to heal from the mucus pouring over it. Remember to breathe through your mouth so as not to dislodge the tissue.

7. Use Pressure

Pressing down on the lower corner of your nose activates a pressure point that might help some people. You can also press down on the bridge of your nose in the hopes of stemming the flow.

8. Avoid Irritants

Figuring out how to stop a runny nose fast might be as simple as learning what triggers it and then getting away from that problem. Runny noses can be caused by allergies to pollen, pets, latex, dust mites, and spicy foods. You might need to avoid or get rid of those irritants which could possibly cause runny nose.

9. Use a Humidifier

This will help keep the air moist, and that can ease the runny nose. The humidifier might make the runny nose worse at first, but as the mucus leaves your body, you might find that you produce much less.

10. Turn to Hot Drinks

Things like tea or coffee can help dry out the sinuses and make you feel better. Adding honey or lemon to each might help even more. Besides that, sometimes the caffeine in these drinks can dry up the nasal passages.

11. Take a Hot Shower

This works very much like the steam trick. A very hot shower can help. Use a body wash or shampoo that is filled with eucalyptus oil, peppermint oil or some other mucus-busting scent that will help you even more.

12. Stay Hydrated

The more water you drink, the easier your body will flush out the toxins that might be causing the runny nose. Water soothes congestion and while it might make the runny nose worse at first, it will clear it up much faster.

When to See a Doctor

Knowing how to stop a runny nose fast is a good skill to have, but keep in mind that there are several reasons why you might be suffering from mucus overload. Some of these can be treated at home, like the common cold or seasonal allergies. But others might require a visit to the doctor to figure out what is going on and how to fix it.

You should go to the doctor if you have the following symptoms:

  • The problem has lasted for ten days or more.
  • You have a high fever, or your fever has lasted for at least three days.
  • Your runny nose is painful, or has a green tint. This is often a sign of infection.
  • You are taking medications that might suppress your immune system.
  • You have asthma, emphysema, or other breathing issues that could be exacerbated by a runny nose.
  • Your runny nose has some blood in the mucus.
  • You have recently had a head injury and now are experiencing nasal discharge.
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