Why is it that when I have a cold frequently only one nostril is stuffed up?
Interestingly, there's a normal cycle of congestion and decongestion called a "nasal cycle." WebMD explains that the length of the cycle varies, but usually takes one to four hours. "If you hold a finger over one nostril and blow air out the other nostril, you will notice a different amount of air coming from each side. This should normally vary from side to side according to your nasal cycle."
A plugged-up proboscis can result from more than just a cold or the flu. Other causes include allergies or a non-allergic inflammation in the nasal blood vessels (which can occur in response to stress, cold air, spicy food, or exercise). MayoClinic.com recommends these measures to breathe freely: steam, drinking fluids, eating chicken soup, nasal saline spray, breathing strips, or decongestants.
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