Reasons For a Stuffy Nose That Comes and Goes

January 31, 2024

Do you suffer from a stuffy nose that seems to have defied all kinds of treatment or medications? A stuffy nose or nasal congestion is a common sign of communicable viral or bacterial  infection that should be diagnosed and treated properly. This article provided tips on how to handle a stuffy nose that comes and goes.

For a same-day diagnosis and treatment plan, visit the walk-in clinic at AFC Urgent Care Cedar Grove. Our urgent care center provides immediate care with no appointment necessary. Just walk-in any day of the week to start recovering in the right hands.

Understanding Nasal Congestion

Stuffy nose or nasal congestion occurs when you experience a stuffed-up feeling in your nose due to clogged mucus. It makes breathing difficult and causes pressure on the lungs. Often called “rhinitis” by healthcare providers, a stuffy nose is a result of an inflamed nasal cavity lining. This inflammation leads to swollen nasal canals, making it difficult to breathe through your nose or remove mucus properly. This stuffy feeling is sometimes accompanied by cough, headache, and fatigue.

What Causes a Stuffy Nose?

Many people's stuffy nose is caused by excessive mucus that has nowhere else to go. This is quite untrue as the stuffy feeling you experience is due to the inflamed tissues lining your nasal canal. This inflammation occurs when the blood vessels surrounding the nose become dilated to alert the immune response cells in the body toward the nose. However, there are other causes of stuffy nose and they include;


When your body incubates viruses such as influenza virus, you are bound to have a cold. Viruses get into the body via open routes like the nose and begin to multiply inside the tissue linings of the nasal passages. The presence of these viruses triggers an immune response that inflames the nasal linings.


If you are allergic to dander, dust, and pollen, you may likely suffer from constant nasal congestion. Like viruses, the presence of allergies triggers similar responses to the immune system, causing nasal congestion.

Other causes of nasal congestion include pre-existing health conditions like acute and chronic sinusitis, Churg-Strauss syndrome, Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and Granulomatosis with polyangiitis. Certain kinds of foods can also cause a stuffy nose as well as medications and alcohol. Pregnant women are also prone to having stuffy noses due to their reduced immune system and poor lifestyle choices like smoking and the overuse of decongestant nasal spray can contribute to your blocked nose.

How Long Should a Typical Stuffy Nose Last?

In the average person, a stuffy nose should last between three days to one week. This may take longer than the described timeframe if the cause of your stuffy nose requires more time to heal or manage. However, some people have stuffy noses without being triggered, this condition is known as nonallergic rhinitis or vasomotor rhinitis. If your stuffy nose tends to recur, worsens over time, or does not get better despite at-home treatment, it’s important to seek medical attention. Visiting an urgent care facility is a great resource for those who need quick symptom relief. If your nasal congestion is a result of an underlying disease, urgent care will help you manage or treat it. A healthcare provider will proffer nasal decongestant sprays, medications, surgery, or a combination of multiple treatments to treat your stuffy nose.

Get Same-Day Care at AFC Urgent Care Cedar Grove

If you or someone you know is dealing with persistent nasal congestion that won’t go away, don’t wait to receive treatment! AFC Urgent Care Cedar Grove is open seven days a week with convenient hours to best work with your schedule. We provide the highest quality of care to all patients in the area and surrounding communities. Most Major Health Insurances are accepted. If you have any additional questions about nasal congestion, or other illnesses we treat, please contact us directly at (973) 239-2300.

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