Woman with sinus headache

Why Your Sinuses Feel Worse in the Winter

Right alongside the seasonal flu and common cold, a sinus headache in winter can quickly put a damper on your enjoyment of the season. If you experience sinus issues on a regular basis, you know just how important it is to identify your triggers and avoid them to help you breathe easily. 

If you’ve noticed your sinuses acting up more frequently during cold, dry weather, you’re not alone. Cold weather and sinus problems are closely linked, after all. In fact, the weather can be one of the biggest precursors to sinus problems. Luckily, there are steps you can take to minimize the effects of a sinus headache in winter so you can enjoy the season to the fullest. 

Can Cold Weather Cause Sinus Pressure?

Yes, cold weather can cause sinus pressure. Winter is known for bringing dry air, which can dry out the mucus lining in your nose and airways, causing them to thicken. Introducing humidity helps solve this problem. Humidifiers add moisture to the air by releasing water vapor, which can help thin the thick mucus your body produces when the air is dry. They can also soothe irritated airways, helping prevent a sinus headache in winter. 

Woman assembling Canopy humidifier

Additional triggers for sinus pressure include dust and pet dander. These particles collect on high shelves and surfaces, and they’ll eventually circulate and become airborne. When this happens, your family will breathe them in and may experience a variety of respiratory symptoms.   

What Are Other Ways to Alleviate Sinus Pressure?

Warm Fluids and Compresses

Drinking fluids is important when battling a sinus headache in winter. Hot beverages, such as herbal teas, can be particularly helpful because the steam helps clear your sinuses. Drinking fluids more often also keeps you hydrated.

Additionally, a hot compress has a similar effect to steam. Rotating between hot and cold compresses is an effective way to fight off sinus congestion. Use a warm compress across your nose, cheeks, and forehead for about three minutes, then swap it out for a cold one for 30 seconds. Repeat this up to three times for relief. 

Nasal Irrigation

Nasal congestion and sinus problems can be extremely uncomfortable, especially in children. A Neti pot or other type of nasal irrigation tool can help rinse out these passages. Make sure to use it as directed to prevent irritation. When used correctly, these devices can help you better. 

Anti-Inflammatory Foods

Additionally, certain anti-inflammatory foods can help clear sinuses and reduce inflammation caused by ailments like the common cold. Antioxidant-rich foods protect the body’s membranes, so fill up with green leafy vegetables, almonds and walnuts, cherries, berries, citrus fruit, and fatty fishes, including tuna and salmon. You may also find that spicy foods and highly aromatic ingredients, like ginger, garlic, and horseradish, help clear sinus congestion.

Healthy sinuses start at home. Canopy’s original humidifier and Humidifier Plus provide clean, gentle hydration to help soothe irritated nasal passages. The original model treats up to 500 square feet, making it ideal for bedrooms and home offices. The larger Humidifier Plus is designed for spaces up to 1,000 square feet, so you can enjoy a more comfortable main living space.

Reading Next