A sweet solution for a stuffy nose

Question: I can barely sleep anymore -- my nose gets so stuffy almost every night. Nothing seems to help. I hate the idea of using nasal spray, because I've heard you can get addicted to it. Sometimes, though, I just have to give in, but the spray only lasts for a few hours. What can I do?

Dr. Wright's Answer: The best way to eliminate the problem is to determine what's causing it. The most obvious cause of stuffiness is inhalant allergies, but food allergies can also play a role. Chronic problems can be caused by infection. But antibiotics might not be much help because a surprising number of chronic infection-associated stuffiness problems are caused by fungi, not bacteria.

To determine what is at the root of your particular problem, it's best to work with a physician skilled in nutritional and natural medicine. (To locate one in your area, contact the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians at 866-538-2267 or www.naturopathic.org).

In the meantime, the natural sugar-alcohol xylitol is sometimes helpful for treating stuffy noses. It is used as a nasal spray, but since the ingredients are all-natural, xylitol spray doesn't carry the risks associated with many of those patented, over-the-counter nasal sprays. It works by reducing the ability of allergens to stick to the lining of the nose and sinuses. A spray or two as far as possible into the nostrils twice daily should offer some relief.

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About the author


Jonathan V. Wright, M.D. has degrees from both Harvard University (cum laude) and the University of Michigan. More than any other doctor, he practically invented the modern science of applied nutritional biochemistry and he has advanced nutritional medicine for nearly three decades.

As of today, Dr. Wright has received over 35,000 patient visits at his now-famous Tahoma Clinic in Washington State.

To learn more about Dr. Wright, and to sign up for his free Health e-Tips eLetter, please visit www.wrightnewsletter.com.


Anonymous's picture


Xylitol nasal spray (Xclear) works great for stuffy noses. However, Migraineurs beware because xylitol can cause migraines in susceptable people. It gave me a whopper of a migraine everytime I used it until I was able to figure out the cause.

Anonymous's picture

Jeff K

What is the proper ratio of water and Xylitol for the nasal spray application?

Anonymous's picture


one part xylitol to five parts distilled water

Anonymous's picture

Larry Frieders (The Compounder)

Xlear nasal spray is 5% xylitol.
Another helpful nasal spray is Sinus Buster - made with extract of hot peppers. It sounds deadly, but it almost works wonders.

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