Our job sites are cleaner than most. We barely have any of the normal toxins. Formaldehyde, nasty glues, paints, thinners and all the other chemical toxins are pretty much absent from our job site.

We buy stuff that is free of those toxins when possible. And if not then we find a way not to use them. If that means cleaning the wall with a metal brush for a longer time instead of using ammonia acid then so be it.

But even so there is a lot of dust. Even good old fashioned wood can create irritants when cut. Then there is all the dust from tearing down walls, mixing concrete, cutting sheet rock, grinding metal….

All this stuff wreaks havoc on the workers’ sinuses. Sinus infections are a problem. The sinus is actually a very complex system and a lot more than an air passage through your nose. It ties all sorts of things together, from your mouth, ears, eyes, lungs and stomach. Even your brain is closely linked to how well your sinus is working.

And we’re not alone. As one site likes to say, “The American Academy of Otolaryngology reports that sinusitis is the most common chronic medical condition in the country. This disorder of the upper airway affects 37 million Americans and leads to debilitating pain and a decline in quality-of-life.”

Sinus infections are debilitating. Even though they happen in the sinus, they make the whole body feel like you’ve been hit by a train. It is a real drain on the body. Your mind is fuzzy and your body is weak. The real problem is that it can be chronic to the point that you just get used to working at half mast. It can really screw up your life.

I have an ongoing arsenal of medications to combat the ongoing sinus infections I get almost on a yearly basis.

To be honest I’m not very effective at keeping the infection at bay and usually have to resort to antibiotics. And I have no idea what natural medication is more effective than another. I basically throw them all at my nose and hope one of them helps. The way I look at it I might be getting infections a lot more if I DIDN’T do all these things. And they do give me relief.

The following list is an informal collection of things I have found to be helpful at cleaning out the sinus and keeping them infection free.

The Neti Pot.

This one is quite an experience if you’ve never done it before. But it is very effective. You pass water through the sinuses. The water should be warm and clean. Put a healthy pinch of salt in the water. You can also add other disinfectants. The best are a little hydrogen peroxide, or apple cider vinigar or a little drop of grapefruit seed extract.

Grapefruit seed extract.
This stuff tastes like crap. But it is a great natural germ killer. Put a few drops in your hot tea and gulp it down. You don’t savor this stuff.

Apple cider vinegar.
If there ever was a cure all old wives’ remedy this would be it. Does everything from increasing longevity to increase your sex drive apparently. But again it is good at killing germs and increasing the flow of healthy fluids. Hot water, apple cider vinegar and honey is a nice drink.

“Sinus Buster” nasal spray.

Try snorting hot pepper powder and you’ll know how this sinus spray feels. It literally has hot pepper in it and boy is it effective at cleansing out the sinus. Not for the faint of heart, or nose.

Dr. Shen’s Sinus tablets, aka Pe Min Kan Wan.
Harmless looking little brown pills. Take as many as you want. Very Asian.

Ginger root, another age old medicinal. Grate it generously into hot tea, cook with it.

Oregano Oil Capsules
One of the big issues with sinus is high levels of candida in the body. Oregano oil is a great candida killer as well as general disinfectant. Take them with food or else you’ll get oregano heart burn.

Garlic is to Europe what Ginger is to Asia. Garlic again is a disinfectant and like all the above ingredients it stimulates the glands and gets the healthy juices moving.

Red Peper
If you’ve ever eaten spicy food that was so strong you began sweating, your eyes teared up and you had to blow your nose, then you have already experienced a hot pepper sinus cleanse. Put it in your apple cider hot tea drink and in your food.

Hot water
The combination of humidity and heat is great for clearing sinuses. Let the shower pour over your forehead, place your towel covered head over a pot of hot water, lay with a hot wet rag over your face or sit in a Turkish steam sauna. It all does wonders for the sinus.

What Not To Do

Don’t Expose your face to cold.
Cold weather, cold food, cold water… it all does the opposite of the above things. It constricts your sinus passages and doesn’t let them clear. Stay away from ice cream, cold drinks, ice, etc. Cover your face in cold weather.

Don’t Eat Mucus Forming Food
It is hard to get good food on the job site. Usually you are stuck with sandwiches from the corner deli. But as much as possible it is important to avoid dairy, sugar, refined flour (white bread, pasta etc), fried food, and other starchy things. They create mucus and clog up the sinus. Good luck with this one. It is not easy. These things are also the main culprits for candida build up in the body, another enemy of the sinus.

Don’t expose yourself to dust

On a job site this isn’t easy. It means wearing a mask. Keep the area well ventilated. When possible cut outside. Constantly clean with a good vacuum. Don’t sweap the dust back into the air.