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Sinus congestion during pregnancy

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Sinus congestion during pregnancy is extremely common. Nearly 1/3 of all pregnancies are affected by sinus congestion without any link to nasal allergies or other infections.

Higher amounts of estrogen during pregnancy can contribute to swelling in the mucous membranes lining the nose and even cause you to make more mucus. What's more, the amount of blood in your body increases during pregnancy, which may cause swelling in the tiny blood vessels in the lining of your nose.

Treating sinus congestion during pregnancy

Sinus congestion can be treated during pregnancy, but women should not expect a complete recovery until after the baby is born. Treatments to relieve the symptoms include:

  • Steaming showers or face mask. Steaming the nose will reduce the swelling. After the steaming is complete, the sinus congestion will most likely return.
  • Increase humidity. A humidifier or vaporizer can increase the relative humidity in a room. It is important to change the water in the machine every day and to follow the bacteria treatment guidelines.
  • Environmental factors. There are factors in the environment that can increase the amount of swelling in the nose. These factors include smoke and sudden changes in the temperature. Alcohol should also be avoided as it increases swelling during pregnancy.

Medications safe for pregnancy

There is a list of medications that can be taken by pregnant women. This medication list will differ from doctor to doctor, so the pregnant women will need to see her obstetrician for more information. This list will often include various treatments for symptoms associated with pregnancy and common illnesses and will contain the only medications approved for use in pregnant women.

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Emily Sutherlin is also the News Examiner and Women’s Issues Examiner.

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©2012 Emily M. Sutherlin. All Rights Reserved.

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