Ask The Expert
February 17, 2012
There are many causes for a runny nose. From your question, Iím assuming that this is a persistent problem and that both sides of your nose are runny. Iím also assuming that you do not feel sick.
The most common causes for a runny nose are allergic rhinitis and non-allergic (perrenial) rhinitis. The major difference is that with allergic rhinitis, specific triggers (allergens) can be identified. So treatment involves removing the allergens or the sensitivity to them.
Non-allergic rhinitis is a chronic problem. Treatment involves lessening the making of mucous in the nose. You can do this with antihistamines (oral and topical), decongestants, steroid nasal sprays, leukotrine inhibitors or some combination of all of these. The best treatment varies from person to person. And you usually find it by trial and error.
To start, visit a doctor who treats runny noses. He or she can get your thorough history and examine you to figure out what you have, and how to treat it.
Unfortunately, there are some people who do not respond to medicines or experience intolerable side effects. Other possible treatments include steroid injections in the nose and/or ďburningĒ the lining inside the nose so it wonít drip as much. But before going through any procedure, talk with your doctor about the risks and benefits.
Even with all of the options available you might choose to keep tissues handy. This option clearly has the least risks and side effects.