Natural Healing: Fighting off a sinus infection


I tend to get a sinus infection — a bad one — about once every two years (it used to be more, but I quit smoking which helped out a lot).

This year’s infection started about four days ago and it’s been smacking me around the face since it started. If you’re lucky enough to have never suffered a sinus infection, here are the syptoms: Dayglow green mucus, pressure around the nose and eyes, headaches, body aches, runny nose and post-nasal drip.

Usually, I treat it with Dayquil/Nyquil and fight it until it winds up getting out of control. Then I follow up with a doctor, who prescribes broad spectrum antibiotics and maybe a shot of steroids.

So, this year, since I find myself with a sudden access to all sorts of essential oils and herbalism knowledge, I decided to try a different approach.

So I bought a new neti pot, grabbed the essential oils and started a steady regiment of nasal rinsing and essential oils.

Here’s what I did:

Step one: Regular nasal rinsing with the neti pot

Neti pots are odd little contraptions. They look like tiny little teapots and can be made of plastic or ceramic — I prefer ceramic. The neti pot is filled with body temperature water, sea salt and baking soda. Recipes for the mix vary, but I use 1/4 teaspoon of salt and soda for every 8 ounces of water.

I also add a drop of Eucalyptus oil and a drop of Tea Tree oil. Make sure whatever oil you’re using is recommended for internal use. If not, then you can skip it. Fill the pot up with the mixture, then pour it in one nostril until it runs out the other. Only use have of it. Then (and this is going to be gross), attempt to suck the remnants of the mixture into the back of the throat and spit it out of your mouth. Repeat with the other nostril.

This is a good practice to start on a daily regiment. If you can do it twice a day, it will have a huge impact on your allergies and sinus health.

Step Two: Use the oils

I use Eucalyptus and Peppermint oil to open my sinuses. I mix it with coconut oil and rub it on my forehead, temples and in my beard (beards: Nature’s diffusers). Both help with sinus pressure and headaches. I also diffuse Juniper Berry oil in our diffuser, which acts as a general mood and energy booster. If I catch an ear ache, I wipe the outside of my ears with a lavender/tea tree/coconut oil blend. I repeat as often as desired. The recipe for both blends is as follows: One teaspoon of coconut oil with two drops of each of the other oils.

Step Three: The magic pill

I also take essential oils internally in the form of gel capsules. The blend is a combination of frankincense, marjoram, oregano and more. I don’t know the exact recipe, as my wife mixes it up for me, but I’ll post a link to it when I find out. It’s incredible! Really. Absolutely incredible. Makes everything feel better: Reduces inflammation, pain and appears to decrease the amount of gross dayglow snot.

I take it about every three hours.

Of course, any of these remedies should require a medical professionals opinion before you try them yourself, but it’s nice to know I have a way to deal with an illness that doesn’t lead to a visit to urgent care or yet another round of antibiotics.

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Melissa has a background in marketing, brand management, graphic design and photography. She left corporate America to pursue her dream of living a simpler life. Simpler doesn’t always mean easier but she enjoys every minute on her small homestead. She loves to cook, practice herbalism and gardening. Her passion is spreading the word about sustainable living and sharing her love of herbalism and living from scratch.

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