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Readers Respond: Managing a Sinus Headache

Responses: 17


Updated July 22, 2009

From the article: What is Sinusitis
A sinus headache can not only be painful but interfere with your life. Let's face it, you can't always tell when one is coming on and you can't always call in sick. Some people say caffeine helps, others take ibuprofen, for others neither of these methods are effective. What do you do to manage the pain of a sinus headache?

+1 on the Neti Pot

I must say that my neti pot has made a huge change in the stuffiness and headaches I have been dealing with for years. First, make sure you have the symptoms of an actual sinus headache, and not a migraine. I was taking 2-3 tablets every few days for the constant headaches. I finally read up on types of headaches last year. I began to suspect sinus pain, but didn't do anything about it. I finally got fed up and started using a neti pot just a month ago, and I have only taken one ibuprofen since then. Most of the time, I would wake up with a headache and deal with it for the whole day. Now, I flush my passages once or twice a day, and I am good to go. I can breathe so much better, and I certainly don't miss the headaches!
—Guest Zed

I've tried EVERYTHING!!!

You name it...ibuprofen, all sinus meds, Antibiotics, cayenne pepper spray, sinus rinses of every kind, massage, masks, hot showers. I am even on hydrocodone for my neck and back. I cannot get rid of these sinus headaches!! They are killing me.!! I can't afford surgery, but desperate to get something, anything...to rid me off these headaches. Any other suggestions? Yes, and Netipot, too. I just want to curl up everyday and lay my head down. My family doesn't understand how dibilitating it truly is. Help! I am desperate!.....
—Guest Donna


I got the neti pot and seriously its amazing. It may be a little weird but its all natural and doesn't hurt at all. It clears out your sinuses and I think Its amazing!!! GET IT!
—Guest Annie

Sinus Pressure

I've had sinus issues my entire adult life. This year has definitely been the worst ever. Every day I have pressure in my cheeks and gums. I am constantly gritting my teeth to relieve the pressure, which of course does not help. Any suggestions?
—Guest dianne

Where do I begin?

Sinuses were my nemesis for several years. After much trial and error I got it under control. Here are my secrets. Neti pot, with a bit of salts made specifically for the Neti. I also use an herbal formula specifically for the Neti from Himalayan Institute - it works great. Craniosacral therapy is one of the best things I've tried. By moving the bones of my skull around, I was able to get much better drainage, which cleared up my symptoms like about 80% almost immediately. Good ole antibiotics, but I had to take several types before I found the one that worked. (That'll be different for each individual, so I won't mention names.) And there's an awesome book called "Love Your Nose" by Ivker that was a great guide. (It used to be called "Sinus Survival"). Hope this helps someone... Anne

Full court press: meds Icepack

Lately I've taken Sudafed (Pseudoephedrine) and Muciniex. If that doesn't work, I wrap an icepack on my head with an ace bandage and take a nap.
—Guest Emily B


When I get a sinus headache, I find that my neck and shoulders stiffen up. If I can get someone to gently rub my shoulders and neck, it helps. I also have a handheld massager that I hold against my neck. The vibrations ease the tension and seem to improve my circulation, and this relieves my headache.
—Guest Susan

Tylenol and warm air

The few times I have had sinusitis, I've used Tylenol with satisfactory results. It seems like cold air really exacerbates the pain, so I would try to breath in warm air or warm vapors which was a temporary relief.
—Guest Anne W.

Another Neti Pot fan

Really, just do it. You will wonder why you waited so long! And use it regularly to avoid future problems.
—Guest garnet128

Getting Rid of Sinus Pain

Get the Neti Pot, they are just wonderful. I am 70 and this is the first time. I was so stuffed up and the pot was a life saver. Give it a try nothing better and no side affects.
—Guest Dee

Cold helps

I sometimes put a cold pack on my neck or eat ice and ice it out as I call it. It does work, if you can handle the cold.
—Guest Karen

Cool Damp Cloth, Dark Room

When I get a sinus headache, I lay down with a cool damp cloth on my forehead in a darkened room. If that doesn't do it, I take a warm shower.
—Guest Connie G.

Facial Massage & Self-Reflexology

For me, a little self-massage is very helpful. I use my ring finger to put pressure on the area underneath my eyes, and along the sides of my nose. I also use some reflexology principals. I roll my toes back and forth between my fingers, putting pressure on the toe "stems". One other thing---using a saline nasal spray helps alleviate a lot of symptoms for me.
—Guest Natalie

Shower, often!

This probably isn't practical AT work, but before or after it's great. I take lots of steamy showers. The vapor loosens things up, helps me breath, and helps relieve tension headache. That's what I do!
—Guest Anne

Neti Pot

After dealing with sinus headaches for years and years, I finally got a neti pot. I am not exaggerating to say it changed my life! I originally shied away thinking it sounded too weird or gross, but it is really very easy to use. Try it, you won't be sorry.
—Guest dredd


I had a sinus headache yesterday, actually, and I took a Cold-Eze lozenge. They have some sort of homeopathic remedy inside, and somehow that made my headache diminish. I'm not sure if it would work for everyone, but it worked for me.
—Guest Elizabeth

Neti Pot Clears Sinuses

Doing a saline rinse with a neti pot is easy to do and can really clear out the sinuses. It helps relieve sinus headaches and allergy discomfort too. I gave my Dad a neti pot recently because he has been suffering from a sinus infection. But he has also recently watched some waterboarding footage on CNN that disturbed him. Because of those images in his head it made him too nervous to try the neti. I just laughed at him, but he is stubborn. Admittedly neti potting looks weird but it isn't torture. It really does help, and it doesn't hurt at all. I love my neti pot!
—Guest lila

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