8 Potential Causes of Your Runny Nose

8 Potential Causes of Your Runny Nose

Respiratory infections, such as colds, the flu, and COVID-19, are common sources for runny noses. And, if you suffer from seasonal allergies, you know that these can also keep you stocked up with tissues. However, there are also plenty of other reasons for runny noses.

If your runny nose seems to have no obvious cause, or if it becomes chronic and lasts beyond the infection that started it, it could be time to visit with otolaryngologist Alexis Furze, MD, at his practice in Newport Beach, California. Dr. Furze and his team specialize in treating all causes of runny noses that linger and interfere with daily life. 

Temporary reasons for a runny nose

Virtually everyone has gone through the temporary conditions that can rub the nose raw. Common respiratory infections and seasonal allergies aren’t fun to endure, but they have limited lifespans. Your runny nose may last a week or two with a cold or the flu. Hay fever season might run a little longer, but the source of your allergic reaction will pass with time.

Other temporary reasons for a runny nose can include drinking a hot drink, eating spicy food, or stepping outside on a chilly day. Runny noses due to these issues usually end after a few tissues and a change in conditions. If you have unexplained symptoms that last for 10 days or more, it’s time to see Dr. Furze for an exam and assessment. 

8 common reasons for an ongoing runny nose

If your runny nose persists beyond the end of your cold or when pollen counts settle down, there may be something else causing your problem. Here are eight of the most common causes of runny noses. 

1. Sinusitis

Chronic sinusitis is a condition in which the sinuses are swollen and inflamed for three months or longer. Furthermore, it can be caused by a number of issues, such as nasal polyps and respiratory tract infections.

2. Deviated septum

Getting over a runny nose requires efficient drainage of your nasal passages and sinuses. If your nasal septum — which divides your nostrils — is off-center, this could interfere with that drainage. You may have a deviated septum naturally or because of a nose injury. 

3. Nasal polyps

Another obstruction issue, nasal polyps are benign growths in the tissue of your airways. They can occupy important drainage space, leading to persistent runny noses. 

4. Environmental conditions

Dry or polluted air can create overabundant mucus production, which could lead to a chronic runny nose. Workplace irritants, strong scents, and cigarette smoke can also cause these reactions. 

5. Hormone events

Menstruation, pregnancy, or taking birth control pills can lead to changes in your body that can cause a runny nose. An underactive thyroid gland can also do this. 

6. Medications

Oral contraceptives, antidepressants, blood pressure medications, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can cause runny noses as a side effect. And, overuse of decongestant nasal sprays can elevate the flow of mucus.

7. Aerobic exertion

The increase in blood flow associated with aerobic exercise can stimulate the nasal lining, which could produce an excess of mucus drainage. 

8. Stress

The physical changes that accompany chronic stress may also make your nose run. Stress is a known cause of nonallergic rhinitis.

If you have a chronic runny nose, the solution to your problem will depend on the underlying issue. When you see Dr. Furze, he’ll give you a thorough evaluation. Once he diagnoses the cause, he’ll develop a plan to treat your runny nose.

To learn more, call 949-389-6673 to book an appointment with the practice of Alexis Furze, MD, today.

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