Xylitol-Clean Nose

Spray With Osmotic Effect Of Thinning The Mucus

Xylitol Clean Nose. Healthy Living Magazine

Xylitol Clean Nose. Healthy Living Magazine

A sinus headache occurs when the passages between the sinuses and the nose become blocked with mucus and you get pressure pains. Because the sinuses are so near the Eustachian tubes, the passages between the throat and the ears, usually when the sinuses are infected so are the middle ears.

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In fact, oftentimes when a patient doesn’t have classic signs of a sinus infection, I will see fluid build-up behind the middle ear and suspect it came from the sinuses.

We’re going to lump the nose, sinuses, ears and the breathing passages all into one term–airway health. What helps one of these passages helps the whole airway to breathe better. Infections in the nose and sinuses usually occur together and are called rhinosinusitis.. Two of the most common bacteria that are known to cause “itis” of the airways are Streptococcus pneumoniae and Streptococcus mutans. There are also a lot of members of the staphyloccous family in the nose too and they can cause skin conditions and allergies. Fortunately, these are germs that don’t thrive when exposed to xylitol.

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A study from Finland of 300 healthy children compared those chewing xylitol gum with those chewing sucrose- sweetened gum and found a 40% reduction in the incidence of ear infections (acute otitis media) in the xylitol-gum chewing group.

A study evaluating the effects of nasal irrigation of xylitol in people with chronic rhino sinusitis showed that those on a 10-day course of daily xylitol compared with those on saline irrigation had more improved symptoms.

mechanism of action

The breathing passages are a self-cleaning mechanism. The glands lining the airway passages secrete mucus, which traps germs and toxins that are not good for the body. Lining the “mucus membranes,” the lining of the breathing passages, are trillions of tiny hairs, called cilia, which wave like tiny sea fans. They wave against the mucus to gradually push it up the airway, into the throat and sometimes the nose where you can cough and blow it out.

Many airway problems begin with the mucus getting too thick, which is why drugstore shelves are packed with “mucolytics,” medicines that thin mucus to make it easier for the cilia to move it out and for you to cough it out. It just so happens that dental researchers at the University of Iowa showed xylitol is a born mucolytic.

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A study shows xylitol nasal spray reduces the carriage rates of nasal staphylococcal. Many people carry staph as a member of their resident bacteria; yet, “staph carriers” increase the chances of skin infections in family members. This is why one of the first things doctors try to do in a family that has a lot of staph infections is to find out who is the carrier. A study showed that using xylitol nasal spray significantly reduced the number of staph germs in nasal cultures compared with saline spray.

A study evaluating the effects of nasal irrigation of xylitol in people with chronic rhino sinusitis showed that those on a 10-day course of daily xylitol compared with those on saline irrigation had improved symptoms.

upgrade to xylitol

My colleague, Lon Jones, the osteopath who discovered the uses of xylitol for nasal conditions, was prompted to action by necessity. As a doctor in an area of Texas where there was a lot farming and pollen he had to deal with a granddaughter who was having allergy problems, besides hoards of Jones’ patients. He developed a saline and xylitol formula that would wash the nose much as one does one’s hands.

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As a father of eight, I researched what is the safest and most effective substance to squirt into stuffy little noses and older noses, too. I like my patients and kids to use what I call my “hose nose.” Hypertonic saline (extra salt) solutions are effective by pulling liquid out of the nasal lining to thin the mucus. This is called an osmotic effect. But there is some concern that if the salt concentration is too high it may interfere with the antibiotic defenses of the nasal lining and slow the action of the cilia, those millions of lining hairs that wave back and forth to propel the mucus out. A “three percent hypertonic saline” is the concentration often in commercially available sprays. But let’s upgrade our thinking from a saltwater nasal spray to a xylitol nasal spray, since xylitol has been shown to have an osmotic effect of thinning the mucus and improving ciliary activity in addition to keeping offending bacteria from sticking to the lining of the nose. Cleaning your kids’ nose daily with a xylitol nasal spray could make dealing with allergies all that much easier.

ReferencesSarlus H, Höglund cO, Karshikoff B, Wang X, Lekander M, Schultzberg M, Oprica M. Allergy influences the inflammatory status of the brain and enhances tau-phosphorylation. J cell Mol Med. 2012 Oct;16(10):2401-12. doi: 10.1111/j.1582-4934.2012.01556.
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