A runny nose is most often a symptom of an infection or diseased sinuses. It can be recognized by nasal discharge that is thick and sticky, has an unpleasant odor, and is yellowish, greenish, or grayish. How to treat a purulent runny nose? What will suit him best?

Purulent runny nose – causes

A purulent runny nose most typically appears with colds and flu. The bacteria responsible for the development of purulent runny nose include: Streptococcus pneumoniae, Moraxella cataralis and Haemophilus influenzae.

Although some people think that catarrh is only caused by bacteria, this is actually not the case. A bacterial infection is usually a superinfection of a previous viral infection, caused primarily by adenoviruses, rhinoviruses, influenza, and parainfluenza viruses.

Another possible cause of a purulent runny nose is inflammation of the paranasal sinuses.

Purulent catarrh – what does it look like?

A purulent runny nose is manifested by yellow, yellow-green or gray discharge from the nose. This secretion is thick and sticky, and its removal from the respiratory tract is difficult. Due to its delay, there is a feeling of nasal congestion and difficulty breathing. Taste and smell are often impaired due to purulent runny nose; the timbre of the voice additionally changes. The purulent nature of the runny nose is indicated primarily by its specific, very unpleasant smell. Nasal discharge can drain down the back of the throat, causing a wet cough that can disrupt sleep and, in young children, make it difficult to eat.

Read also: Proven methods for a runny nose in an infant

Purulent catarrh – associated symptoms

When an infection is accompanied by a purulent runny nose, many other symptoms may appear, including:

  • nasal congestion,
  • wet cough with sputum,
  • heat,
  • sore throat
  • sore throat,
  • headache,
  • pain or sensation of facial expansion,
  • deterioration or loss of smell,
  • fatigue,
  • Bad mood.

When does a purulent runny nose require consulting a doctor?

A thick and smelly purulent runny nose that does not respond to treatment and is accompanied by other respiratory symptoms should prompt us to see a doctor. A purulent runny nose with blood should be regarded as alarming and requires immediate medical intervention. Chronic purulent rhinitis lasting more than 3 weeks requires diagnosis and specialized treatment, as does recurrent purulent rhinitis in a child, which occurs several times a year.

Home remedies for festering colds

The most important thing in the fight against a purulent runny nose is to frequently clear the airways of secretions remaining in them. To make nose blowing effective, it is best to first dilute the thick secretions with seawater or saline and then blow your nose into a tissue. Nasal rinsing using specially designed kits that can be purchased at a pharmacy also brings good results.

A purulent runny nose in a child requires the use of special aspirators due to the inability to blow the nose. Before doing this, you should use sea or physiological water, which should make the nasal cleansing procedure more effective.

Learn more: How to Do Sinus Inhalations

How to cure a purulent runny nose?

If it turns out that the development of purulent rhinitis was caused by a bacterial infection, antibiotic therapy may be required. The decision to prescribe an antibiotic is made by the doctor, usually based on tests performed. Antibiotics are ineffective for viral infections and therefore should not be used. Antibiotic therapy is supported by pharmacotherapy, which includes the use of oral and topical medications for rhinitis.

Purulent runny nose – how to treat?

In pharmacies, you can find a variety of cold medicines, which are sold in the form of tablets, nasal drops, sprays, and aerosols. Most products in this category are primarily designed to thin secretions in the respiratory tract and facilitate their elimination. In addition, they should reduce swelling of the nasal mucosa and relieve pain.

Pharmacotherapy can be supported with home remedies to relieve persistent symptoms, including:

  • by inhalation with saline solution or essential oil,
  • humidifying the air at home using a special humidifier or a wet towel hung on a warm radiator,
  • frequent ventilation of rooms in the house.

Purulent runny nose – how long does it last?

Symptoms of infection in the form of a purulent runny nose can last up to 10 days or longer. Untreated purulent rhinitis can lead to serious complications, especially in children. That’s why he shouldn’t be underestimated. If it occurs, you should consult a doctor and begin treatment.