Ask a Top Doc: Is There a Fast Fix for Post-Nasal Drip?

Answer from Michael Cirigliano, associate professor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

“Whether you have allergies, a sinus infection, or chronic congestion and a runny nose from the common cold, the best way to treat the ever-annoying post-nasal drip is with a prescribed nasal steroid, like Flonase. Unlike steroids that body builders use, this is a topical steroid that you spray into the nasal passageway. It reduces the inflammation in the nasal passages, allows drainage if you’re congested, and, most importantly, decreases the amount of mucus—aka snot—you’re producing. Two puffs per nostril every evening should do the trick. Just make sure you don’t use over-the-counter nasal decongestants like Afrin for more than three days at a time, as they can damage the lining of the nose and lead to chronic congestion.  Never take an antihistamine unless you are sure your symptoms are due to allergies— it could make your mucus thicker.”