Ayurvedic Treatment for Postnasal Drip

Postnasal drip is an abnormal moist feeling, in the rare part of the nose & throat. It happens because of the extra mucus produced by the glands in there. People with postnasal drip clear their throat more than normal. The excess mucus can lead to many discomforts. There are home remedies to handle the issues related to postnasal drip, though a visit to the doctor is necessary. The nose, throat, and sinuses are all constantly producing mucus in everyone. Mucus is a thick and slimy substance that helps to keep the airways from drying out throughout the day. The air people breathe is full of dust, germs, pollens, and other environmental pollutants. When the air enters the body, these particles can create problems if not filtered. It is the mucus that traps such foreign bodies and helps eliminate them. Mucus usually goes unnoticed. It harmlessly mixes with saliva throughout the day and is swallowed or blown from the nose. However, if the body produces too much mucus, it becomes a situation. When this happens, a person feels the mucus dripping down the back of the throat. This is known as postnasal drip.

Signs & Symptoms of Postnasal Drip

The main sign is – Feeling of extra mucus dripping down the back of the throat

  • sore or scratchy throat
  • nausea
  • frequently clearing the throat
  • excessive spitting up or swallowing mucus
  • the foul smell of breath
  • a cough that gets worse at night

Causes of Postnasal Drip

  • Allergies such as hay fever may trigger postnasal drip, as the body produces extra mucus to try and eliminate the pollen spores.
  • Cold weather
  • Dry air
  • Infections like the flu, sinusitis and the common cold
  • Eating overly spicy food
  • Pregnancy
  • Objects stuck in the nose
  • Irritating chemicals from perfumes, cleaning products, or environmental fumes
  • Smoke
  • Medications, including oral contraceptives and antihypertensives
  • Chronic respiratory conditions, such as COPD
  • The deviated nasal septum, which occurs when the nasal septum

Pathophysiology of Postnasal Drip

Postnasal drip (PND) is the collection and drainage of excess secretions from the nose or paranasal sinuses into the pharynx. The exact pathophysiology is not known but hypersensitivity of immune reactive cells is believed to be a part of it. Nasal endoscopy revealing rhinitis and mucopurulent secretions are suggestive, although not diagnostic. The issue when attempting to diagnose PNDS is that there are no objective sensitive or specific tests and no way to quantify the amount of mucus discharge.

Diagnosis of Postnasal Drip

            Physical examination with a detailed history

Blood tests and skin tests to determine allergic reactions and immunity

Ultrasound

CT scan

MRI scan

Endoscopy

Treatments of Postnasal Drip

There are remedies available to treat postnasal drip, including:

Decongestant medications such as phenylephrine (Sudafed PE Congestion) and pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) can help dry out the mucus.

Non-sedating antihistamines such as loratadine (Claritin) fexofenadine (Allegra) levocetirizine (Xyzal) and cetirizine (Zyrtec) are called, meaning they are less likely to cause fatigue.

Mucus thinning medications such as guaifenesin (Mucinex).

Using Saline nasal sprays or irrigation pots with warm salt water

Prognosis of Postnasal Drip

Most postnasal drip is benign but annoying. In most cases, it will get relieved on its own. Any additional symptoms alongside the postnasal drip should be examined well for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Complications of Postnasal Drip

Complications from postnasal drip are minor in most cases and depend on the cause. However, left untreated, postnasal drip can lead to serious complications. In rare cases, postnasal drip is caused by nasopharyngeal cancers, complications being those related to the spread of cancer.

Ayurvedic Concept of Postnasal Drip

        Naasaaparisraava

Ayurvedic Nidana of Postnasal Drip

        Causative factors for the vitiation of Kapha and Vaata

Ayurvedic Purvaaroopa of Postnasal Drip

        Fever, Indigestion

Ayurvedic Samprapti of Postnasal Drip

        The faulty food habits or lifestyle, results in the vitiation of Kapha and blocks the channels of Vata and impairs digestion, resulting in the impairment of mucus formation.

Ayurvedic Lakshana of Postnasal Drip

        Clear watery fluid discharge from nose

            No discolouration

            Excess at night time

Ayurvedic Divisions of Postnasal Drip

        Not mentioned

Prognosis of Postnasal Drip

        Saadhya in new cases

            Asaadhya in chronic & complicated cases

Ayurvedic Chikithsa for Postnasal Drip

Ayurvedic Samana for Postnasal Drip

Aamapaachanam

Agnideepanam

Lepanam with Rookshana dravyas

Swedanam

Ayurvedic Sodhana for Postnasal Drip

Vamanam

Virechanam

Nasyam – with choorna

Avapeeda-theekshna nasyam

Dhoomapanam

Commonly used Ayurvedic medicines for Postnasal Drip

        Dasamoolakadutrayam kashayam

            Elakanadi kashayam

            Haridrakhandam

            Thaaleesapathradi vatakam

            Vyoshadi vatakam

Brands available

AVS Kottakal

AVP Coimbatore

SNA oushadhasala

Vaidyaratnam oushadhasala

Home remedies for Postnasal Drip

  • Vaporisers
  • Indoor herbal fumigation with guggulu, turmeric, neem, garlic etc
  • Saline nasal sprays or drainage using a Neti pot
  • Sleeping with the head slightly elevated can promote proper drainage.
  • Staying hydrated by drinking warm or hot liquid

Diet for Postnasal Drip

  • To be avoided

Heavy meals and difficult to digest foods – cause indigestion.

Junk foods- cause disturbance in digestion and reduces the bioavailability of the medicine

Carbonated drinks – makes the stomach more acidic and disturbed digestion

Refrigerated and frozen foods – causes weak and sluggish digestion by weakening Agni (digestive fire)

Milk and milk products – increase kapha, obstruct channels and obesity

Curd – causes vidaaha and thereby many other diseases

  • To be added

Light meals and easily digestible foods

Green gram, soups, honey

Freshly cooked and warm food processed with cumin seeds, ginger, black pepper, ajwain etc

Behaviour:

Protect yourself from the cold climate.

Better to avoid exposure to excessive sunlight wind rain or dust.

Maintain a regular food and sleep schedule.

Avoid holding or forcing the urges like urine, faeces, cough, sneeze etc.

Avoid a sedentary lifestyle.

Yoga for Postnasal Drip

Yoga and regular exercises are helpful to improve immunity & to maintain proper metabolism and water-electrolyte balance. So, in postnasal drip, regular stretching and mild cardio exercises are advised. Also, specific yogacharya including naadisuddhi pranayama, bhujangaasana, pavanamuktasana is recommended.

Regular exercise helps improve the bioavailability of the medicine and food ingested and leads to positive health.

 Yoga can maintain harmony within the body and with the surrounding system.

Pavanamuktasana

Nadisudhi pranayama

Bhujangasana

Simple exercises for lungs and heart health

All the exercises and physical exertions must be decided and done under the supervision of a medical expert only.

Research articles for Postnasal Driphttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3332192/

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