It’s fall and we’re heading into the cold part of the year. At least here in Colorado, sinus infection are common with cyclists during this time of year. I’m not sure exactly why but I think it was to do with the really dry, cold air and breathing hard while training. It’s also when we get more colds and try training too much before we get over them. My non-active co-workers also are more likely to have sinus infections during the winter too but not as bad as cyclists.
For the last several years, I haven’t made it through a winter without being on antibiotics at least once for a sinus infection. Not only do I have bad summer time allergies but I’m also allergic to molds and dust. I have some congestion most of the time which contributes to my sinus problems.
With my extra job stress this year, I’ve been on antibiotics 4 times for sinus infections. The last time was about 2 months ago. The biggest thing that makes it hard for me to train while on antibiotics is that it messes my stomach up. That makes it hard to eat enough on long rides and can cause a bonk. Eating yogurt and taking iFlora or Digest Caps really helps my stomach.
This last time I was on pretty strong antibiotics for 18 days. Within a week of finishing the antibiotics, I was feeling like I had a sinus infection again. I was doing everything that I know to do. I was taking antihistamines, using nasal spray and Mucinex.
When I was in to my asthma and allergy doctor’s office to get my allergy shot, I told them I was having trouble again. They said I really should be using the Sinus Rinse. A couple years ago they had tried getting me to use it too and had given me a free one.
I had never used it. You use it to spray a saline solution up one nostril and let it run out the other side. That just didn’t seem pleasant to me. My dad had been using it for a while and had told me it doesn’t feel that bad and had really helped him.
They gave me another one even though I told them I still had the other one. I figured I’d give it a try to try to avoid taking more antibiotics. It ended up not feeling bad at all and I got a lot of crud out of my nose. The key is to bend over enough so the solution doesn’t run down your throat. I’ve also found when I’m really stuffed up it helps to take a really deep breath and hold it while squirting the solution up my nose.
Even after using it once, my sinuses felt better. After a couple more days of using it, my sinuses felt fine. I used it for a couple weeks and then felt well enough and quit using it. After several days, my sinuses started bothering me again. I guess I need to use it every few days to keep things cleared out.
According to the list on the website of places to buy the Sinus Rinse, it should be easy to find at a drug or grocery store. My free one only came with 5 packets for making the solution but I think the ones in the store come with 50 packets. I bought a box of 100 packets at Walgreens once the ones that came with mine ran out.