What is post-nasal drip?
Post-nasal drip is precisely how it sounds – mucous from the nose drips backward down the throat, causing irritation and sometimes a cough. It typically feels like a tickle at the back of the throat and is not quite the same as a runny nose.
Causes of Post-Nasal Drip
- Common cold
- Sinus infections
- Cold temperatures
- Spicy foods
- Something stuck in the nose
- Dry air
- Irritants such as chemicals or dust
- Cigarette smoke
- Nasal sprays
- Certain medications
- Hormonal changes
Many ways to treat post-nasal drip can be done at home. Generally, post-nasal drip will go away on its own. Use the following tips to decrease the length of symptoms and comfort yourself or your child.
- Air filter
- Diffuse eucalyptus oil
- Hot shower
- Keep hydrated with plenty of water
- Sleep propped up
- Dust and vacuum often
- Clean pillowcases frequently
- Irrigate the nasal passage (NoseFrida)
- Oral decongestant
- Nasal decongestant
- Flonase (ages four and older)
- Little Remedies Decongestant (ages two and older)
- Guaifenesin (ages four and older)
Your provider may prescribe steroids for some infections.
When to Contact Your Pediatric Healthcare Provider
- Cold symptoms last over ten days
- Persistent fever
- Swelling or redness around the eyes throughout the day.
- Severe headache or pain in the back of the neck
- Sensitivity to light
- Persistent vomiting
As a general rule,
newborns (under one month) should be taken to the ER for a temp over 100.7° F
older kids should be taken for a temp over 103.5° F (check first to see if they are responsive to fever reducers like Tylenol or Motrin)
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