What are Nasal Polyps?

Do you feel constant nasal congestion that you are nervous about? Don’t worry, many people have the same worries but it can be easily treated! Nasal polyps are a common cause of persistent congestion, facial pressure and recurrent sinus infections. Although these nagging growths are benign, they can cause bothersome symptoms that can persist until they are treated.

What are Nasal Polyps?

Nasal polyps are a soft, painless growth on the lining of the sinus or inside the nasal passage. Nasal polyps are known to affect 4 to 40 percent of the general population and are more common in adults than in children. Additionally, nasal polyps are 2 to 4 times more common amongst males than females. While medications can be used to shrink polyps, sometimes surgery is required to remove them. Additionally, even after surgery, it is possible that new nasal polyps will develop.

Symptoms:

Mild cases of nasal polyps may not have any symptoms, but larger or multiple polyps may block your nasal passages and lead to breathing issues, frequent infections, and a loss of smell.

Additionally, other symptoms may include:

  • A runny nose
  • Postnasal drip
  • Loss of sense of taste
  • Facial pain or headache
  • Pain in the upper teeth (Drinking fluids or positioning your head better for drainage are ways to combat this.)
  • Pressure over your forehead and face
  • Frequent nosebleeds

What Causes Nasal Polyps?

Unfortunately, medical professionals haven’t found a single cause for nasal polyps. However, there is some evidence that people who develop nasal polyps have different immune systems and chemical makeups that those who don’t develop nasal polyps don’t have. Furthermore, people with asthma, chronic inflammation, recurring infections, allergies, immune disorders, or are sensitive to drugs can develop nasal polyps.

Treatment:

One of the most effective routes for treating nasal polyps is to prevent them from developing in the first place! The main prevention strategy is to manage your allergies properly.

If your allergy treatment isn’t combating your symptoms after 10 days, it is recommended to schedule an appointment with a doctor.

Another prevention technique to avoid using nasal irritants as much as possible. Be sure to avoid inhaling certain toxins like allergens, tobacco smoke, debris, and chemical fumes as they can lead to nasal swelling and irritation.

Nasal polyps that are severe, or persist despite allergy treatment, can be removed via a straight-forward sinus surgery. If you feel that you may suffer from nasal polyps, it’s important to contact a certified physician to get your health checked out!

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