Sure the season changes are beautiful, and so is your best friend’s cat, but when both cause you to have sneezing bouts that just don’t quit, your enjoyment of them quickly fades. Sneezing attacks are a common symptom for allergy sufferers, and when you understand what makes them happen, you learn how to prevent them.
What Makes You Sneeze?
Sneezing is an automatic reflex, an involuntary action by your body to expel unwanted germs and irritants from the nose and throat. For many, it happens only once. But for others, sneezes come one after another in what is referred to as a sneezing attack. While these attacks are harmless, they can be frustrating to deal with and disrupt you and those around you.
Sneezing is usually not a sign of a serious health condition. Your nose constantly filters the air you breathe to remove debris and dirt. The dirt that makes it into your nose gets trapped in the mucus and hair and can irritate the nasal membranes, which triggers the sneeze reflex. Sneezing can also be caused by:
- Allergens like pollen, animal dander, and dust mites
- Common cold and flu caused by viruses
- Irritants such as spicy foods, dust particles, smoke, and perfumes
- Breathing in cold air
12 Natural Home Remedies to Stop Sneezing
Sneezing can often be avoided and controlled through natural remedies. Here are 12 of the best ways to stop sneezing at home!
1. Avoid Your Allergy Triggers
People with allergies sneeze when they come in contact with the specific allergens that cause their immune system to react. If you’re uncertain what allergens cause your symptoms, consider Wyndly’s at-home allergy test kit to identify your triggers. Once you know what your allergens are, you can limit your exposure by doing things like:
- Deep cleaning to eliminate dust and pet dander
- Avoiding animals that cause you to react
- Staying indoors when pollen counts are high
- Wearing a mask when mowing the lawn
2. Blow Your Nose
Most sneezes come from allergens and irritants inside the nose. Sneezing is your body's way of expelling them. Sometimes, you can make the process faster by blowing your nose, especially when you know you’ve been exposed, such as after raking the leaves or petting a neighbor’s dog.
3. Use a Neti Pot
A mixture of sterile water and pure salt can stop your sneezing with the help of a neti pot. Mix the solution and place the pot’s spout in your nostril. Tilt your head to one side to let the saline solution flow through your sinuses and out the other nostril. Neti pots can significantly reduce allergy symptoms, including sneezing, after exposure to environmental allergens.
4. Try Saline Nasal Sprays
Try saline nasal sprays to prevent sneezing. Using the same saltwater solution neti pots use, a saline nasal spray can flush allergens from the nose and keep the nasal mucus membranes hydrated to reduce irritation and inflammation. While these sprays reduce sneezing and other allergy symptoms, they do so only in the short term.
5. Run a Humidifier
Sneezing can result from the inflammation and irritation caused by dry mucus membranes in the nose, especially during allergy season. Humidifiers solve this problem by releasing water vapor and steam into the air, increasing the humidity, which increases moisture in the nasal tissues. Ideally, keep your home’s humidity levels between 30-50%.
6. Avoid Fragrance and Perfumes
Perfumes are a common trigger for sneezing. If perfumes cause you to sneeze, avoid them as much as possible. There are natural alternatives to perfumes if you want to continue to wear a fragrance.
7. Wear Sunglasses
For many people, bright lights trigger allergies and leave them sneezing in fits. A phenomenon called photic sneeze reflex, this condition is harmless and often genetic. Wear sunglasses to reduce this reflex if sunlight or bright lights trigger sneezing.
8. Get More Vitamin C
Vitamin C can reduce the amount of histamine in your body and address mild allergy symptoms, including sneezing. To consume natural vitamin c, eat more citrus fruits or consider taking a supplement.
9. Drink Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea also acts as a natural antihistamine by reducing histamine levels. For those with allergies, a cup of this tea may help with sneezing fits. As a bonus, hot chamomile tea can alleviate sinus congestion.
10. Breathe Through Your Mouth
Because your sneeze starts with the stimulation of the cilia in the nose, intentionally breathing through the mouth reduces the excitement in the cilia and may allow the urge to sneeze to dissipate.
11. Distract Your Nervous System
There are many urban myths about ways to stop sneezing, from pinching your lip to tickling the roof of your mouth with your tongue. Although the only evidence that these methods work is anecdotal, there may be some truth behind the theories. When you feel a sneeze coming, these added sensations may cause an overload on the nervous system and stop the sneeze from coming to fruition.
12. Consider Allergy Immunotherapy
Allergy immunotherapy exposes your immune system to small but gradually increasing amounts of allergens. Through this process, the body becomes desensitized and reduces your allergy symptoms, including sneezing. At Wyndly, we offer long-lasting allergy relief through sublingual immunotherapy.
5 Most Common Allergy Sneezing Triggers
It’s vital to know your sneezing triggers to avoid them. For those with allergies, it’s even more important. Below are some of the most common allergy sneezing triggers to watch for:
- Animal Dander: The tiny flakes that fall off the skin of your pets, as well as the proteins in their saliva, can trigger your allergy symptoms. If you have pets in the home, keep them out of the bedroom and clean rugs, carpets, and furniture as often as possible.
- Dust Mites: Dust mites live in your home, mattresses, sofa, furniture, carpets, and curtains. Eliminate dust shelters, such as behind drapes, and consider replacing carpets and rugs with hard floor options.
- Pollen: Pollen is one of the most common allergens and can come from trees, grasses, and weeds. Most pollen allergies come and go with the seasons, causing flare-ups at different times throughout the year.
- Mold: Mold is found in homes with high levels of humidity and in dark corners, basements, bathrooms, and under sinks. Find and address these areas by fixing leaks, increasing ventilation, or hiring professional help.
- Rodents and Pests: Mice, rats, and cockroaches can all cause allergy symptoms, including sneezing. Fill holes, don’t leave food on counters, and eliminate warm, wet areas that could attract cockroaches. Don’t hesitate to bring in professional help if necessary.
Find Long-Lasting Relief from Allergies and Sneezing
Most allergy treatments only deal with the side effects and don’t address the underlying cause, your immune system. Allergy immunotherapy, on the other hand, makes long-lasting changes to your immune system.
By exposing your body to trace amounts of the allergens and then gradually increasing, the immune system reaction lessens, and you experience fewer and fewer allergy symptoms. For many patients, environmental allergy symptoms go away long-term!
At Wyndly, we start by identifying your allergy triggers and creating a personalized treatment plan based on the results of your at-home allergy test. If allergy immunotherapy is right for you, you can enroll in our subscription service, which delivers your allergy medication right to your door!
Is Sneezing Too Much Dangerous?
In most cases, sneezing is harmless. There are extreme, but rare, cases when sneezing can be harmful. When you sneeze, pressure builds up to expel the sneeze from your body. Pressure also increases in your blood vessels and ears, and if it gets too great, can lead to ruptured eardrums, hearing loss, and blood vessel damage.
Why Is My Continuous Sneezing Fit Uncontrollable?
Sneezing can become uncontrollable for several reasons. One cause could be that you’re in an area contaminated by your sneezing triggers, such as dust, pepper, perfume, or pollen. Another common cause of uncontrollable sneezing is hay fever, a term for the symptoms associated with seasonal allergies.
How to Stop Sneezing?
If you suffer from sneezing fits, making lifestyle adjustments in addition to using home remedies can help. For example:
- Drink lots of water
- Consume more vitamins, especially Vitamine C
- Keep your home free from allergens
- Use a humidifier
- Blow your nose
- Drink herbal teas like the chamomile tea
Why Am I Sneezing so Much All of a Sudden?
Do you suddenly find yourself sneezing uncontrollably? That's probably because you have recently been exposed to an allergen or trigger, whether it’s in your environment or body. If you recently entered a new space, leave it and see if you stop sneezing. Wash your hands and face, and blow your nose.
Is It Normal to Sneeze Every Day?
Sneezing every day is normal and can happen to anyone. However, it is only considered normal if the sneezes happen four times or fewer. If you sneeze more often, you may have an allergy to something in your environment.
Is Sneezing a Symptom of Covid?
Although sneezing doesn’t indicate you have COVID-19, it could be a symptom. If you sneeze and don’t have any other COVID-19 symptoms, such as a fever, body aches, or headache, then you are likely responding to something in your environment.
If you do have other symptoms that are not allergy-related, you may have a viral infection like the common cold, the flu, or COVID-19. Consult your medical doctor if you have concerns.
Are You Ready to Be Free from Allergy Sneezing?
With the right knowledge, you can reduce sneezing with our tips and home remedies. If you’ve tried to address your allergy symptoms and aren’t seeing results, it may be time to try allergy immunotherapy. Take our two-minute assessment now to see if you're a candidate for sublingual immunotherapy and be one step closer to a life free from allergy symptoms!