General Practitioner

Medicspot Drinking Water

Sinus pain and pressure can be an unpleasant experience that affects many people, often caused by the common cold or seasonal allergies. The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do to help relieve the pain. While over-the-counter medications can help, there are also some home remedies that many people find effective.

Saline nasal spray

A saline nasal spray, also referred to as a saline flush, is a common home remedy for treating sinus pain. The salt in saline sprays helps to increase moisture in your nose and alleviate swelling in the sinus walls. You can purchase a saline nasal spray from your local pharmacy, or you can try making your own using iodine-free salt, baking soda and distilled water.


Dry air can irritate your sinuses, increasing sinus pressure and resulting in a throbbing pain from a sinus headache. Steam helps to add moisture to the air. In turn, this helps to moisten your sinus passages and thins out any mucus that may have thickened. You can benefit from steam by taking a hot shower and breathing in the steam to help reduce pressure. This is not advised for children due to the risk of burns.
For longer-term relief, you might want to consider buying a humidifier to keep the air moist.


Getting plenty of rest can help your body to heal, allowing you to speed up your recovery time. When you’re asleep, your body produces more infection-fighting antibodies and cells which play an essential role in attacking viruses and bacteria. To help get a better night’s sleep, try to avoid doing any activities or drinking beverages that are over-stimulating before bed.

Sleep with extra pillows

Additionally, sleeping with a couple of pillows can help to elevate your head during the night. This allows mucus to drain from your sinuses and helps you to breathe easier through the night.

Drink plenty of water

Drinking lots of water helps to prevent dehydration which contributes to your sinus passages drying out, leading to increased pressure in your face. While water is an obvious choice to stay hydrated, there are plenty of other options, including hot drinks, ice cubes and fruits and vegetables with high water content.

Use a cold pack

Anything you can use to cool your head can help ease sinus pain. An ice pack, ice mask, bag of ice or a cold compress can help.

If your sinus pain seems to be persisting, you have any other unusual symptoms or start to feel unwell you should consult your doctor.

Recently, I authored an in-depth guide to sinusitis, along with Mr Simon Gane, a Consultant ENT Surgeon appointed to the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital. If you’re interested in learning more about sinusitis and how you can treat it, the full guide is available to read for free on the Medicspot website.


Dr Abby Hyams

Dr Abby Hyams grew up in Manchester and did her medical training in Bristol. She has been a GP for over ten years, many of them as a partner in an NHS practice in Hemel Hempstead and more recently as a GP for Medicspot. Dr Hyams loves being a GP because the wide spectrum of people she encounters every day. Abby joined Medicspot for the opportunity to spend more time with her young family since she was working long hours as an NHS GP partner. With Medicspot, Abby works from home in a clinically supported environment whilst still being able to do NHS work.

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