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No More Decongestants the Doctor Said




Since May of last year, I have been using a nasal spray for about eight months to help get me through those moments when my nose was not working. Panic sets in every time my nasal cavities close for business. I could not stand it. Although using the spray for the entire last eight months was not a continuous thing, it was definitely a go-to to help me breathe through my nose quickly.


During the last few months, during the cold season, I increased the nasal spray, ignored the recommended doses, and just used when and how much I needed—every day got worse. Nose bleeds started, and there was less time between needing it. I was doing more damage than good.


Then my heart rate would sore for no reason and randomly. It caused me to be dizzy and start sweating, and while sitting, my heart rate would shoot up. At times, I found it hard to get it back below 100. After a few episodes of heart palpitations, it was time to make the doctor's appointment.


As soon as I started discussing the situation with my heart heart and palpitations, I jumped into the conversation about nose spray. I explained that I would panic when my nose became plugged up and asked if it could be why my heart rate was messed up. Well, he did not continue the conversation as I had a 'Holy Crap" moment right then. As he looked up the spray I had been using and the adverse effects, I already knew.


Of course, I knew! I had been ignoring that overusing this spray was worsening my breathing efforts. I chose to keep using it because the inability to breathe through my nose was my worst option; at least, it was in my mind.


The last thing the doctor said, after ordering a heart monitor to make sure that it wasn't something, was, 'No more decongestants of any kind.'


A week is almost up, and I am days without spraying it up my nose. I can breathe through my nose, I feel better, and I am starting to feel more in control.


Now that addiction to breathing, I mean nasty nasal spray, is behind me, I guess it is time to evaluate my other habits or abuses that may be screwing up my life.


It is a process.

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