If you have rhinitis, the inside of your nose will become inflamed, causing symptoms such as a build-up of mucus in the nasal cavities and a blocked or runny nose.
You may also feel pressure or pain in your nose. Rhinitis is often caused by an allergic reaction to a substance such as pollen. This is known as allergic rhinitis.
Non-allergic rhinitis is where the nasal lining becomes swollen and inflamed due to causes other than allergy.
There are different types of non-allergic rhinitis including:
- viral or infectious rhinitis – caused by an infection, such as the common cold
- vasomotor rhinitis – where blood vessels in your nose are over-sensitive; certain environmental triggers, such as cold weather or smoke, can cause them to expand, causing congestion
- atrophic rhinitis – where membranes inside your nose thin and harden, causing nasal passages to widen and dry out; foul-smelling crusts form inside your nose and you may lose your sense of smell; atrophic rhinitis can sometimes occur as a complication of nasal surgery or as a result of infection
- rhinitis medicamentosa – caused by overuse of nasal decongestants, which should not be used for more than a few days
Allergic Rhinitis often causes cold-like symptoms, such as sneezing, itchiness and a blocked or runny nose.
The symptoms usually begin soon after exposure to an allergen.
Some people only experience allergic rhinitis for a few months at a time because the allergens they are sensitive to, such as tree or grass pollen, are only produced at certain times of the year. Other people experience the condition all year round because they are sensitive to non-seasonal allergens, such as animal fur.
Most people with allergic rhinitis have mild symptoms that can be easily and effectively treated. However, for some, symptoms can be severe and persistent, causing sleep problems and interfering with everyday life.
Allergic rhinitis is caused by an allergic reaction to an allergen, such as pollen, dust and certain animals. It can result because of an oversensitive immune system.
In cases of allergic rhinitis, the immune system reacts to an allergen as if it were harmful. The immune system is the body’s natural defence against infection and illness.
If your immune system is oversensitive, it will react to allergens by producing antibodies to fight them off. Antibodies are special proteins in the blood that are usually produced to fight viruses and infections.
Allergic reactions do not occur the first time you come into contact with an allergen. The immune system has to recognise and ‘memorise’ it before producing antibodies to fight it. This process is known as sensitisation.
After you develop sensitivity to an allergen, whenever it comes into contact with the inside of your nose and throat, it will be detected by antibodies called immunoglobulin E (IgE).
These cause cells to release a number of chemicals (including histamine), which cause the symptoms of allergic rhinitis, such as:
- swelling of the mucus membrane (the inside layer of your nose) – which blocks the airway and causes congestion
- production of excess mucus – which occurs as a result of the swelling and causes sneezing and a runny nose
There are a number of common allergens which can trigger allergic rhinitis – breathing in tiny particles of these allergens is enough to set it off. The most common airborne allergens that cause rhinitis are described below.
House Dust Mites:
House dust mites are tiny insects that feed on the dead flakes of human skin. They can be found in mattresses, carpets, soft furniture, pillows and beds.
Rhinitis is not caused by the dust mites themselves, but by a chemical found in their excrement. Dust mites are present all year round, although their numbers tend to peak during the winter.
Tree and Grass Pollen:
Tiny particles of pollen produced by trees and grasses can sometimes cause allergic rhinitis.
Most trees pollinate between early to mid spring. Grasses pollinate at the end of spring and beginning of summer.
Many people are allergic to animals, such as cats and dogs.
It is not animal fur that causes the allergic reaction, rather flakes of dead animal skin and their urine and saliva.
Dogs and cats are the most common culprits, although some people are affected by horses, cattle, rabbits and rodents, such as guinea pigs and hamsters.
Some people are affected by allergens found in their work environment, such as wood dust, flour dust or latex.
At Risk Groups:
It is not fully understood why some people become oversensitive to allergens. However, some people are more likely to develop an allergy because it runs in their family.
If this is the case, you are said to be atopic or to have atopy. People who are atopic are more likely to develop allergies because they produce more IgE antibodies than other people.
Environmental factors also seem to play a part. Studies have shown certain things may increase the chance of a child developing allergies. These include:
• growing up in a house where people smoke
• exposure to dust mites
• exposure to pets
• using antibiotics
Non-allergic rhinitis occurs when the nasal lining becomes swollen and inflamed, usually due to both swollen blood vessels and an accumulation of fluid in the tissues of the nose.
Blood vessels inside your nose help to control the flow of mucus by expanding and narrowing. Swelling of the nasal lining causes congestion and stimulates the mucus glands in the nose, resulting in the typical symptoms of nasal obstruction, catarrh (a build-up of fluid in the nasal cavities) and a runny nose.
There are several possible causes of non-allergic rhinitis including:
In cases of viral rhinitis, a virus attacks the lining of the nose and throat, resulting in it becoming inflamed and triggering the production of mucus.
For reasons that are unknown, people with vasomotor rhinitis have very sensitive nasal blood vessels. Environmental triggers can make the blood vessels expand, leading to congestion and a build-up of mucus. Common triggers include:
• chemical irritants, such as smoke, perfume or paint fumes
• changes in the weather, such as a drop in temperature
• spicy food
Inside your nose, there are three ridges of bone covered by a layer of tissue. These layers of tissue are called turbinates. Atrophic rhinitis can occur if the turbinates become damaged.
Turbinates can be damaged by infection, although this is rare in the UK. Bacteria usually responsible for atrophic rhinitis, known as Klebsiella ozenae, are mainly found in India, China and Egypt.
Turbinates play an important role in the functioning of your nose by:
• keeping the inside of your nose moist
• protecting the body from being infected with bacteria
• regulating the air pressure of oxygen you breathe in
• containing important nerve endings that are used to transmit information, such as smells, to your brain
If a certain amount of turbinates are damaged or removed, the remaining tissue will become dry, crusty and prone to infection.
If you have atrophic rhinitis, you may also experience shortness of breath, because the turbinates are no longer able to regulate air pressure effectively and your lungs have to work harder to receive air. Many people also lose their sense of smell (anosmia).
The amount of turbinates that can be lost before atrophic rhinitis develops will differ from person to person. Some people lose a large amount of turbinates and never develop the condition, whereas others develop the condition after losing a small number of turbinates.
Rhinitis medicamentosa is caused by the overuse of nasal decongestant sprays. It can also occur as a complication of cocaine misuse.
Nasal decongestants work by reducing the swelling of the blood vessels in your nose. However, if decongestant sprays are used for longer than five to seven days at a time, they can cause the lining of your nose to swell up again, even after the cold or allergy that originally caused the problem has passed.
If you use more decongestants in an attempt to reduce the swelling, it is likely to make the problem worse. This is sometimes known as ‘rebound congestion’.
It is possible to get locked into a cycle of overuse and dependence on nasal decongestants, in a similar way to becoming addicted to drugs.
Non-allergic rhinitis can also be caused by hormonal changes due to pregnancy, puberty or taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or the contraceptive pill. An underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) is another possible cause.
It is thought that hormones play a role in the enlargement of the nasal blood vessels that can lead to rhinitis.
Have a diet rich in vitamin C and vitamin B.
It is important to not add further toxicity to your system so try to adhere to the following:
- Do not consume any artificial sweeteners, such as Splenda, NutraSweet or Aspartame
- Do not consume high fructose corn syrup or mono-sodium glutamate.
- Do not drink any carbonated beverages.
- Avoid all fast food restaurants.
- Avoid all canned food.
- Eliminate conventional dairy products. The best dairy products are raw, unpasteurised and homogenised dairy from grass fed cows. If this is unavailable, then buy organic dairy.
- Avoid conventional beef. The best beef is organic grass fed beef, www.grasslandbeef.com. The second best is organic meat; this includes beef, veal, lamb, chicken and turkey.
- Take Vitamin D3 50,000-100,000 International Units a day for periods of 4 weeks at a time.
- Wholefood supplements are the best way of ensuring your nutritional needs are met. The best we know on the market is Kevin Trudeau’s “KT Daily” product. You can find more details here.
- Take an Omega 3 supplement:
Prescription and non-prescription medication:
What non-prescription and prescription drugs are you taking? Your non-prescription and prescription are partially the reason that you have this illness or disease – you need to get off these medications but do so only under the guidance of a licensed health care practitioner.
We know that when the body is out of balance, energy doesn’t flow, leading blockages and eventually disease. Here are some things you can do to combat stress and restore balance:
- Go to a Dr Morter BEST (Bio-Energetic Synchronisation Technique) Practitioner.
- Sign up for Energetic Re-Balancing: 2 practitioners to consider are:
Stephen Lewis, founder of the Aim Program. Find out more by clicking here.
. Find out more by clicking here.
- Consider using Mary Millers Iching System Products – ichingsystemsinstruments.com
- Reiki healing is very powerful in releasing stress and emotional baggage. Find a practitioner here.
- Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) has had remarkable results in dissolving stress. Find a local practitioner here or go towww.thetappingsolution.com or www.tftrx.com
- Try Hypnotherapy to relax the mind. Find a practitioner here.
Broccoli protects against rhinitis: www.naturalnews.com/025771_broccoli_asthma_antioxidant.html
Vitamin B12 deficiency a cause of rhinitis: www.naturalnews.com/027819_vitamin_B12_coughing.html
Traditional Chinese Medicine – Ancient Healing www.naturalcures.com/healthblog/traditional_chinese_ancient_healing.php
The best way to cleansing and purification of the body www.naturalcures.com/healthblog/54_the_best_way_to_cleansing_and_purification_of_the_body_110512.php
Mother Nature’s Natural Germ Fighters naturalhealthdossier.com/2012/03/mother-natures-natural-germ-fighters
Immune health NC_Newsletter_07-11.pdf
Squeaky Clean (Colonic Irrigation) www.naturalcures.com/healthblog/squeaky_clean.php
Heal Your Body and Raise Your Consciousness – Qigong NC_Newsletter_12-08.pdf
Health Care that Won’t Cost You a Single Penny – EFT NC_Newsletter_12-06.pdf
Become Master of Your Mind – taking charge of your reaction to stress NC_Newsletter_12-10.pdf
Jump for Joy – Rebounding is a great stress busting workout NC_Newsletter_12-10.pdf
Hypnotherapy for stress management – why it is so effective www.naturalcures.com/healthblog/hypnotherapy_for_stress.php
Beehive essence, the natural way to treat rhinitis: www.youtube.com/watch?v=hvTYdXwnH34
EFT for treating disease www.garythink.com/eft/physicial.html
Herbal medicines for rhinitis: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18219828
Spriulina and rhinitis: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18343939
Further Information (links and books)
Hay Fever and Allergies: Discovering the Real Culprits and Natural Solutions for Reversing Allergic Rhinitis by Case Adams; Allergic Rhinitis: Help from Chinese Medicine by Yang Qing-Hua and Carl Stimson
Natural Alternatives to Antibiotics by John McKenna
The Healing Power of Nature Foods: 50 Revitalizing Superfoods & Lifestyle Choices To Promote Vibrant Health by Susan Smith Jones
Prescription for Nutritional Healing, Fifth Edition: A Practical A-to-Z Reference to Drug-Free Remedies Using Vitamins, Minerals, Herbs & Food … A-To-Z Reference to Drug-Free Remedies) by Phyllis Balch
Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art by Kathi Keville and Mindi Green
Detox and revitalize by Susana L. Belen
Colloidal Silver: The Natural Antibiotic Alternative by Zane Baranowski
The Secret Language of Your Body by Inna Segal
The Healing Herbs: The Ultimate Guide to the Curative Power of Nature’s Medicines by Michael Castleman and Prevention Magazine
Andrea Butje | Aromahead [email protected] – aromatherapy
Carrie Vitt [email protected] – organic food recipes.
David Spector-NSR/USA [email protected] – meditation, stress
judith hoad [email protected] – herbalist.
Kath May [email protected] – reiki, tai chi.
Lillian Bridges [email protected] – Chinese medicine, living naturally.
Monika [email protected] – aromatherapy.
Rakesh [email protected] – Ayurvedic Practitioner.