This has been long over-due! According to my Mum, I’ve been suffering from sinus issues since my late teens (17/18 years of age. I’m now 24) I finally got myself to the hospital after many visits to my local G.P/doctor that were unsuccessful to say the least. I took Sudafed & a nasal spray called Flixonase and that did work for about 6-7 months one year but after that it was ineffective.
The doctor in the hospital was beyond lovely to me. He specialises in ENT. (Ears, Nose, Throat) He asked me what my symptoms were.
- I have no sense of smell or taste at all. With taste, there’s a few foods that I can strongly taste while others are just completely bland to me. With smell, I would have to blow my nose if I wanted to actually smell anything but even at that, it would just get blocked again a few moments later.
- My right ear would go deaf/get blocked often. That feeling you get when you’re on a plane and need to pop it by yawning etc.
- At times I find myself being really drowsy and my eyes getting puffy.
He then told me after examining my nose and listening to my symptoms that I have Rhinitis.
Rhinitis is irritation and inflammation of the mucous membrane inside the nose. Common symptoms are a stuffy nose, runny nose, sneezing, and post-nasal drip.In rhinitis, the inflammation of the mucous membrane is caused by viruses, bacteria, irritants or allergens. The most common kind of rhinitis is allergic rhinitis, which is usually triggered by airborne allergens such as pollen and dander. Allergic rhinitis may cause additional symptoms, such as sneezing and nasal itching, coughing, headache, fatigue, malaise and cognitive impairment.
The big question now that I need to find out is whether I have the above rhinitis or non-allergenic rhinitis.
Nonallergic Rhinitis refers to rhinitis that is not due to an allergy. It was formerly known as vasomotor rhinitis as the cause was thought to be vasodilation caused by an overactive parasympathetic nerve response. In vasomotor rhinitis, certain nonspecific stimuli, including changes in environment (temperature, humidity, barometric pressure, or weather), airborne irritants (odors, fumes), dietary factors (spicy food, alcohol), exercise and emotional factors trigger rhinitis. There is still much to be learned about this, but it is thought that these non-allergic triggers cause dilation of the blood vessels in the lining of the nose, which results in swelling and drainage.
To do this, I will need to get an allergy skin prick test to see if I’m actually allergic to anything. I was given steroids called Prednisolone to start off with to clear the rhinitis first. I’m to take 20mg (4 tablets) for 2 days then 10mg (2 tablets) for another 2 days. If they don’t work, I am to go on nose drops. If they don’t work then I’m to go on a different nasal spray.
The Surgery Route
My final option if none of this works is to get surgery. My doctor told me my right nostril is quite swollen inside and this is why it would get blocked more often than my left nostril, which is true and it does happen. To my understanding of what I was told, my nose would need to get broken to straighten out my nose/the linings in my nose and de-swell them.