An occasional sneeze is perfectly normal, and we all know that! But do you sometimes experience uncontrollable and incessant bouts of sneezing that leave you feeling tired and exhausted? That’s probably an indication that something is irritating your nasal cavity.
Sneezing can be caused by a common cold or the flu, allergy to pollen, dust, dander or mold, breathing in corticosteroids from certain nose sprays, or triggers such as dry air, dust, air pollution, spicy food, intense emotions, or certain medications.
According to a study(1), about one of every four individuals also experience violent bouts of sneezing when exposed to sunlight or other bright lights. This unusual phenomenon known as the photic sneeze reflex or the sun sneeze has been associated with the activation of the insula (a small region of the cerebral cortex) and the secondary somatosensory cortex.
So, how can you relieve yourself from these frequent sneezing fits? Read on to discover all-natural remedies that can put an immediate stop to your sneezing.
Natural Remedies to Stop Sneezing:
1. Identify Allergy Triggers and Reduce Exposure to It
The first step to combat sneezing and a runny nose would be to keep yourself away from possible allergy triggers. Dust mite particles are one of the most common allergy culprits. Moreover, for some people, mold, animal hair, feathers and fur, pollen, or even certain foods such as dairy, peanuts, etc. can trigger allergies.
You can do a myriad of things to minimize your exposure to common allergy triggers:
- Opting for wooden flooring instead of wall-to-wall carpeting in your house
- Cleaning and vacuuming your home regularly
- Wearing a mask when cleaning
- Washing bed linens frequently or using mite-proof cases for your mattresses and pillows
- Keeping unrefrigerated food covered
- Avoiding foods that cause an allergic reaction
- Regulating the humidity levels in your room
2. Have More Citrus Fruits
Citrus foods contain flavonoids, a powerful phytonutrient that can boost the immune system and lower a person’s susceptibility to allergies and cold.
Eat a minimum of three to four servings of fruits per day. Include fruits such as lemon, pomelo, orange, and grapefruit.
3. Try Turmeric
Turmeric is another effective home remedy that is recommended for sneezing and a runny nose. Turmeric contains curcuminoids, which are both a potent anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial compound. Turmeric milk is primarily touted for its cold-fighting properties.
For frequent bouts of sneezing, mix ½ teaspoon of turmeric powder with 1 cup milk, one teaspoon of honey, and a pinch of black pepper. Mix this well, and drink every day before going to bed. If you experience morning sneezing due to nasal congestion, you can also add 1-2 teaspoons of turmeric powder in a pan over high heat and inhale the fumes.
4. Chew on Ginger
Another quick home remedy to stop sneezing from allergies is simply to chew on a piece of ginger. The phenolic compounds in ginger help to provide immediate relief from respiratory discomfort.
Cut a few slices of raw ginger and chew on it. If you don’t like the pungent flavor of raw ginger, you can also grate some fresh ginger and add some honey to it. Dried ginger powder is also an effective natural remedy for sneezing.
Did You Know!
|Sneezes can travel up to 100 mph and create more than 100,000 droplets.(2)|
Although there are no high-quality scientific studies to back the efficacy of this herbal remedy, elderberry has been used traditionally to treat influenza and cold. This herb has anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic properties that can help to stop frequent sneezing.
Elderberry can be taken in the form of syrup. You can also make elderberry syrup at home. The standard dose of elderberry syrup for adults is one teaspoon, whereas, for children, half a teaspoon is suitable.
Quercetin is another compound that many believe has potentially beneficial effects for allergic reactions, such as sneezing and a runny nose. An in-vitro study has found that this plant flavonoid helps to stop the production and release of histamine, which is a prominent contributor to allergies.
How to Use Quercetin to Stop Sneezing Fits?
You can consume quercetin through natural foods such as red onions, broccoli, peppers, grapes, apples, green tea, black tea, red wine, and certain fruit juices. If you think you are not consuming a reasonable amount of quercetin through food, you can also take a dietary supplement. The recommended dosage is around 500 milligrams, three times a day.
Bromelain is a digestive enzyme found in the juice and fruit of pineapples. This enzyme has proven anti-inflammatory benefits, and studies(3) show that it inhibits allergic sensitization.
How to Use Bromelain?
Bromelain is available for consumption in the form of supplements. The recommended dosage is between 500mg-2000 mg per day and must be taken in divided doses.
8. Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender essential oil is another inexpensive remedy that can treat allergy symptoms. This oil possesses strong anti-inflammatory properties and works as a natural antihistamine.
How to Use Lavender Essential Oil?
Add 2-5 drops of lavender essential oil in a diffuser and inhale. You can also put a drop of oil on a tissue and inhale directly.
Other Handy Tips
1. Having Smaller Meals/Bites:
It has been observed that people tend to sneeze following a heavy meal. Thus, break down your meal and have bite-size portions.
2. Blowing the Nose:
When about to sneeze, you can try blowing your nose instead. This will help ease out the irritants from the nose.
3. Sip On to Chamomile Tea:
Chamomile tea has anti-histamine effects which help reduce histamine levels in the body. This further helps reduce the occurrences of sneezing. Drink a cup or two of chamomile tea to reduce sneezing.
Sneezing is rarely considered a sign of anything serious. But if you are prone to seasonal or year-round allergies, try to avoid triggers that cause you to sneeze. Always talk to your healthcare practitioner or a registered dietitian before taking supplements to boost your immunity. Some synthetic vitamins and minerals, if not taken correctly, may cause more harm than good.
1. Is sneezing good or bad for you?
Sneezing can be good for you and is an integral part of your immune process. When you sneeze, it forces out bacteria and viruses from your body through your nose and mouth.
2. Is sneezing a sign of cold or allergies?
Sneezing can be a sign of either a cold or allergies. To identify which one is causing your sneezing, try to distinguish between the symptoms. Sneezing, accompanied by itchy and watery eyes, eczema, or a sore throat, is more likely due to an allergy. When symptoms such as fever and body aches occur with sneezing, it is more likely due to a cold.
3. Is sneezing bad for your heart?
There is a longstanding belief that your heart momentarily stops every time you sneeze, but this is not the case. When you inhale before you sneeze, the pressure in your chest increases, and as you exhale forcefully during the sneeze, the pressure drops. These pressure changes can cause alterations in the blood flow to your heart, which can affect the heart rate. The electrical activity in the heart, however, is unhindered.
4. Is sneezing a sign of being sick?
Sneezing tends to be an early sign of a cold or the flu. When you are coming down with a cold, the trigeminal nerve in the nose usually gets inflamed, causing you to sneeze.