Postnasal drip develops as a consequence of excessive production of mucus. The mucus is normally produced by the mucous membrane of the nasal cavity. However, a variety of upper respiratory medical conditions such as rhinitis, sinusitis, allergies etc. may cause production of too much mucus which consequently leads to many problems.
Nasal Problem and Postnasal Drip
A nasal problem is a very complex term and it generally refers to a variety of specific symptoms and signs. But all of these symptoms and signs have one thing in common- they develop due to postnasal drip.
We can say that a person is suffering from postnasal drip if he/ she has certain symptoms. Fore example, postnasal drip leads to constant swallowing, rhinorrhea (runny nose), frequent spitting, tickling in the throat and constant clearing of the throat. Furthermore, a person may complain about burning sensation at the back of the throat and has broken or cracking voice. Coughing, difficulty breathing, bad breath and snorting to clear mucus from the nasal passage are several more characteristics of postnasal drip.
Causes of Postnasal Drip and Subsequent Nasal Problem
There are many illnesses associated with postnasal drip. The most common ones include cold, flue, allergies, sinus infection and in children the cause may be an object stuck in the nose. Apart from the previously mentioned pregnant women are prone to postnasal drip and the condition may be also induced with the intake of certain medications such as birth control pills and some medications used in treatment for elevated blood pressure.
Furthermore, postnasal drip may be associated with deviated septum and other anatomical problems of the nasal cavity or sinuses. Environmental conditions, particularly cold temperatures as well as excessive dryness of the air may also induce postnasal drip. And finally, the condition is associated with exposure to some fumes, chemicals, perfumes, cleaning products smoke and similar irritants.
Treatment for Postnasal Drip
Treatment for postnasal drip depends on the underlying cause. Once the doctor prescribes suitable medications postnasal drip as well as nasal problems will all together be brought under control.
Bacterial infections are always treated with suitable antibiotic and these medications are usually prescribed in case of green or yellow mucus. If postnasal drip occurs due to viral infections antibiotics are practically inefficient but the condition is treated symptomatically with nasal decongestants. Decongestants reduce swelling of the mucous membrane and allow easier removal of the mucus from the nasal cavity. Antihistamines are drugs prescribed to patients suffering from postnasal drip associated with allergies. And finally, if the condition develops due to exposure to certain irritants he/ she should take some protective measures and reduce if not eliminate contact with the particular irritant.