Pay a bill
What, exactly, is post-nasal drip? -
Illustration of dripping faucet

What, exactly, is post-nasal drip?

Post-nasal drip (PND) is when your throat becomes a mucus factory, causing all sorts of symptoms like coughing, sore throat, and feeling like you’re swallowing a cotton ball.

Your body normally produces mucus to keep your nose and throat happy, but when it goes into overdrive, PND happens.

PND is not a sickness, but rather an indication of something else going on. So pay attention to the color of your mucus:

  • If it’s thick and green or yellow, you might have an infection.
  • If it’s thin and clear, blame those pesky allergies.
  • If you find blood in your nasal discharge, seek medical advice promptly. 

Remember, understanding PND is the first step to finding relief. So grab a tissue and get to the bottom of it.

What causes post-nasal drip?

Allergies are one of the main culprits behind PND. When you come into contact with allergens like pollen or dust mites, your body goes into overdrive and produces an impressive amount of mucus, surpassing that of even the most energetic snail. 

Respiratory illnesses like colds and sinus infections can also trigger post-nasal drip. These conditions inflame your sinuses, making them crank out even more mucus than a leaky faucet.

  • Certain medications: Some drugs, like birth control pills and blood pressure medications, can dry out your mucous membranes, leading to PND. 
  • Smoking: Lighting up a cigarette not only harms your lungs but also irritates your nose and throat, causing them to produce more mucus. 
  • Environmental irritants: Certain chemicals and perfumes can also trigger this annoying condition. 

Figuring out the cause of post-nasal drip can be tricky. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can lead to stomach acid taking an unexpected journey into your esophagus, resulting in irritation and copious mucus production – a far cry from what one would expect from a mere tummy ache.

How can I get rid of post-nasal drip?

Treating post-nasal drip depends on the cause. First, figure out what’s causing it – like playing detective.

If allergies are to blame, get yourself some over-the-counter allergy meds. They’ll block histamine, the sneeze-inducing troublemaker.

For relief, try saline sprays and rinses. They’ll thin out the mucus and clear up congestion. It’s like a spa day for your nose.

If it’s a bacterial infection, antibiotics may be required. It’s time to call in the big guns – your friendly neighborhood healthcare professional.

And don’t forget lifestyle changes. Quit smoking and avoid irritants. Your nose will thank you.

A few PND FAQs 

Three key takeaways

  1. Post nasal drip: when your nose runs like a faucet, and your throat feels like a swamp.
  1. Treatment options: saline sprays, antihistamines, and maybe some prescription magic.
  1. Don’t forget: stay hydrated and bring in the humidifier for some extra relief.

Learn more

Most of the time, postnasal drip is more of a nuisance than a serious condition. However, sometimes it is the result of a more serious problem. Consider calling us if your symptoms continue to worsen or last more than 10 days. Contact Oakdale ENT by calling 763-233-5755 or schedule an appointment online.