On this page, I discuss interventions that helped me following a turbinate reduction. Each is something individuals are free to make decisions about.


I am not a doctor. Neither do these practices have the potential to harm you as much as a turbinate reduction.


Exercise: If you have ENS (Empty Nose Syndrome), it goes without saying that you don’t feel like it. It is important to get out there and walk—at the least. Do the most you can, and build up. If you can work out–great. Especially in the first year after surgery, you have an opportunity to re-grow some of the blood vessels and nerve supply that was cut out with your turbinates. This healing can reduce pain if you have raw nerve endings, and improve breathing, dryness and sense of smell.


Turbinate surgery turns many of us into mouth breathers. Walking is a good time to practice nose breathing. It may be possible to nose breathe only for a minute or two, initially. Build up the capacity. Deep breathe, using modified Yogic techniques (less pronounced movements, no counting), and attempt to hold the mouth closed. You cannot deep breathe continuously while walking. Do it intermittently. This exercise may also counteract the shrinking of lung capacity caused by loss of the nose/lung reflex.


Inversion: A matter of hanging your head upside down over the edge of your bed. You want to bring blood flow to the injured areas of your turbinates.


Stimulate the olfactory and mucosal glands: Some people lose their sense of smell through turbinate reduction surgery. In the early months following the surgery, I was aware of a partial loss. Additionally, I suffered intolerable dryness. The symptoms were due to a loss of glands and mucosal tissues. You want to get the glands that you have remaining working, again. Deep breathing the scents of fresh oranges and lemons may be helpful.


Yogic breathing: This is a methodic method of deep breathing. Numerous Yogic breathing exercises can be found in Richard Hittleman’s Yoga: 28 Day Exercise Plan. The book is available new and used at




7 Responses to “Breathing”

  1. The difficulty with ens seems to be an inabilty to catch one’s breath by a sniff so that the lips are compressed and by a sympathetic nervous system reflex the lung airways are widened. This can be confirmed by pressing on lips with a finger.
    Nasal inhales should therefore be accompanied by lip compression.
    This thinking is based on asiatic medicine such as marma-yoga and accupressure and western medicine is accordingly foxed by ens.

  2. The ENT at Univ of Pa wants me to use fluticasone nasal spray. Puzzled by this as I am dry and crusty severe pain teeth face throat. Hoarseness swollen face lips. Doesn’t this narrow blood vessels when we should be trying to increase blood flow? I was injured bu a gall bladder surgery I did not need thru intubation and or rough dental cleaning,

    • Susan, I am not familiar with this drug.I also have not researched much that relates specifically to your case. I am sorry I am not much help.

  3. There is always hope. I once felt like that too. While I am not completely better, I am much better than I was.

    • How long did it take before you felt better?

      • James, It took about three years for my breathing to feel more normal, but then I had terrible facial pain for a fourth years due to abscessed teeth caused by the Caldwell-Luc surgery. It took a year to solve it as several dentists failed to find the infections.

  4. The pressure of leaning my head down hurts too much. Am I hopeless?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: