Nasal Passages Always Blocked - Looking for solutions


Padawan Learner
Hello. Let me preface this post by mentioning that I was born with Choanal atresia which is basically a congenital disorder where the nassal passages are blocked due to bone obstructions. I had two surgeries done as an infant. Then I got another major surgery done for this when I was around 11-12 years old. Since then, my nasal passages were unblocked and I was able to breathe through my nose whereas prior to this, I mostly breathed through my mouth. Throughout my early childhood prior to the last surgery, I always had an extremely stuffy nose and breathed through my mouth. After the last surgery, this was kind of solved but not completely.

Because I was so used to mouth breathing, I continued to breathe mostly through my mouth throughout my teenage years; even to this day (at 34) I mostly breathe through my mouth.

I really want to habituate myself to breathing through my nose, but the problem is that my nasal passages are blocked almost all the time with mucus, and only in rare occasions do my nasal passages open up completely and I can breathe normally. I always have a handkerchief or tissues on me all the time because I have to blow my nose constantly. You could call it sinusitis, but I don't know if that's the right term for my condition, because my only symptom is a stuffy nose and nothing else.

I have been doing some research on how to fix this, which ranges from sinus rinses, to certain medications to surgery to more holistic solutions to yoga exercises, etc. I plan on starting experimenting with some of these methods, but I think the root cause is inflammation in general due to poor diet.

I am currently doing some research on the connections between diet and sinusitis and inflammation in general. Some messageboards mention switching to keto helped relieve their sinus symptoms. I am guessing it reduced overall inflammation in their system which helped with the sinus problems.

As a side note, I am also a smoker which I am guessing contributes to this problem, though I am unsure of this because years ago I was doing daily yoga exercises and sri sri ravi shankar's sudharshan kriya exercises while continuing to smoke and I found that I was able to breathe through my nose much better regardless.

I recently became sober after many years of drug and alcohol abuse (about 2 months sober now) so I have been eating a lot of junk food as stimulation to cope with sobriety. Lots of carbs, lots of sugar, lots of fast food, etc., but am ready to starting working on myself and getting healthier.

One of the first things I want to focus on is just basic meditation, which is why I want to stop this sinus problem. I know there are many meditation techniques besides breathing in and out through your nose, but I want to do it this way as I feel it would be the most effective for me right now.

Anyways, besides looking into diet and some specific treatments for this issue, I wanted to ask you guys if there is anything else I should look into or anything I should read to gain more knowledge about how I can solve this problem at the root, rather than merely treat the symptoms. I feel like I need to learn more about inflammation in general, but maybe there's something I don't know about that I should be looking into.

Thanks for reading.

P.S.- I didn't want to start a public thread about this. Rather I wanted to speak to someone on this forum who is more medically inclined than I am. For future diet and health related issues, are there some forum users I could possibly contact privately who know their stuff? Other than this specific issue, I have a million questions related to diet and health, but I didn't want to spam this board with my questions so wanted to find some people I could talk to privately than can guide me a bit. As mentioned, I am newly sober, and though I've been doing research on various topics for many years now, I am still more or less a beginner and have a lot to learn. Definitely could use some people to network with for help in starting with some basics and acquiring knowledge efficiently, starting with diet and health first which is something I want to focus on right now.


FOTCM Member
Hi Andrey,

Thanks for sharing, let me speak to your last request first, I understand the desire to keep things private, I believe you're within your right to share only as much as you're comfortable doing so. I want to commend your courage, sharing your issues and struggle in a public manner, to the extent that you're ok with it, can in fact help others with their own trouble and by giving them a chance to help you as well.

And not only that, it will give you the advantage of having several viewpoints of different people with their own experience.

Having said the above, I am no medical expert, but I do think that the first item to tackle, as it is the most accesible, is diet. You described quitting alcohol and drugs, and eating junk food as a way to cope with the withdrawal, and I do believe that this will exacerbate whatever inflammation might be making the blockage worse.

Another idea, which is tied to the first one, would be to try and elimination diet, as not only generic inflammation from eating toxic foods might be hurting you, but you might also be coming in contact or consuming something that you're allergic to. I mentioned this because whenever I eat dairy products I have nasal blockages for a little while. So I also wanted to suggest exploring food allergies. The usual suspects can be, eggs, dairy, nuts, nightshades and so on. Once I cleaned up my diet a bit, my seasonal allergies, which were accompanied by severe nasal blockages, almost entirely dissipated.

Whenever I've had nasal blockages, like in allergy season, I've also noticed that working out can help with that. I assume it's because of increase heart rate and thus making your body adjust to have an increased oxygen intake. Not only that, but a regular exercise routine might be another way to address your withdrawal symptoms and believe it or not, can be a great way to meditate.

And lastly, since you've had trouble with substance abuse, I also wanted to recommend emotional and psychological work. There's several sources in the forum that can point you in several directions to where you might begin to work on it. Addictive behaviors can have their source in pain one is seeking to numb, life experiences that one hasn't processed and so on. Your own very particular life holds both the source and the key to your behavior, to the explanation for its nature and the answer to the question of how to bring it under your conscious control.

I think working on these, day by day, and one step at a time, might hold the clue to your nasal blockage as well as your living habits. And if you're ever confused or feel like you need to share something or find yourself in a position where you're not entirely sure about your findings, you can always post here and we'd be delighted to offer you some feedback.

Thanks once again. And try to remember that some of these processes take their time, so patience is something to cultivate perhaps.


FOTCM Member
Thanks Alejo.

Interesting that I came across this website prior to reading your post. Its an At-home food sensitivity kit. I've been focusing on diet but have not paid much attention to elimination diet. Thanks for the heads up.
Looks interesting!

Thanks for sharing, and it would be interesting to see what your experience is with it, keep us posted!


Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Hey Andrey, thanks for sharing..good work with the becoming sober! I've had similar addiction problems in the past. I think you'll find working on your diet very much worth the effort!

Just wanted to bring up coffee (if you drink it?) as you didn't mention it - I've found that along with dairy, as Alejo mentioned, coffee seems to be a big cause of nasal blockage for me. It even seems to mess with my ears... a general inflammation thing maybe? After giving it up entirely for a few years, now if I have one cup I get noticeable nasal constriction for a few hours afterwards. Might be worth experimenting with, assuming you do currently drink it.


The Force is Strong With This One
I would recommend putting a small slice of ginger in your mouse (fingernail size, few mm thick). Do not swallow or chew it, just put it with your tongue at your palate and do your usual routines.

Or you can kind of meditate on sensations of your body holding them together and breathing with your stomach.

After some time you can use bigger pieces - up to size of a thumb - your body adjusts to it. Just make some rests if it provides too much discomfort.

And for me changing my eating habits towards low-carb diet also helps with this issue (I have it since childhood, though not so severe)
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