Why Am I Waking Up With a Stuffy Nose?

stuffy nose

For lots of individuals, the first stretch of the morning is reaching for a box of tissues. Why do so many of us wake up with a stuffy nose, even when we’re not sick? There are a number of descriptions for early morning nasal blockage, also referred to as rhinitis, and a few of them might shock you.

The Most Common Reason is Allergens

Information from the 2005 — 2006 National Health and Nutrition Evaluation Study (NHANES) indicates that roughly 74 percent people are exposed to 3-6 allergens in our bedrooms each night.

Whenever you roll over, adjust your covers, shoo the dog off the bed, or fluff your pillow, you’re sending out fresh clouds of allergens into your airways. Not surprising that our nasal passages end up being irritated during the night!

Here’s a list of ordinary bedroom allergens, and what you can do to reduce their results:

Dust Mites

Every home, no matter how immaculately kept, has dust mites.

If you have a dust mite allergic reaction, it’s not the dust or even the termites that are bothering you. Brace yourself. It’s particles of dust mite feces that are triggering your sneezing, itchy eyes, and morning congestion.

People who are allergic to dust mites have to handle it year-round, unlike those who have seasonal allergies.


Seasonal allergies peak in spring and fall. If you’re allergic to any of the pollen in your area, it could be what’s increasing your nasal mucus or swelling up the tissues in your nose.

Pollen that activates your seasonal allergic reactions could be coming from open windows, or they could be getting in through your AC ventilation system.

Doctors at Mayo Clinic suggest these methods to handle seasonal allergic reactions:

  • Limitation your outdoor time on high-pollen days.
  • Delegate outdoor tasks to people who aren’t as impacted by pollen as you.
  • Utilize the highest quality air filters to clean up the air in your house.
  • Talk to your doctor about immunotherapy, prescription, or over-the-counter (OTC) allergy medication to take when seasonal allergic reactions are at their worst.
  • Try acupuncture. In 2015, acupuncture was consisted of in the list of suggested treatment alternatives released by the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgical Treatment.
  • Attempt alternative remedies like spirulina and butterbur. The National Institute of Health states there’s evidence that butterbur can lower signs of allergic rhinitis. Research studies likewise reveal that spirulina has reduced symptoms for people with allergies.


Exposure to mold inside your home could be the nighttime culprit. The American College of Allergic Reaction, Asthma, and Immunology advises individuals to check the following places for mold:

  • bathrooms
  • basements
  • gutters
  • trash bin
  • refrigerator drip pans
  • anywhere a leakage might have dampened surfaces

Get cleanup aid from expert mold remediators if required, and speak with a specialist if you can’t get remedy for OTC antihistamines.

Information verified by the iytmed.com team.

Pet Dander

The American Veterinary Medication Association approximates that roughly 70 million American homes include a minimum of one pet. If your precious dog, cat, or bird shares your nighttime lodgings, it could be making you crowded.

If the morning blockage isn’t worth the evening snuggles, don’t sleep with your pet. You can also take these steps to lower nasal inflammation and stuffiness:

  • Bathe your pet with an anti-allergen shampoo.
  • Move the litter box out of your bedroom.
  • Choose wood floorings to keep dander from settling deep into carpeting.

Morning Stuffiness can Also be Caused by Irritants

Often the cause of morning stuffiness is not related to allergens, but to irritants that cause your nasal passages to swell up during the night. Here are a few of the more common irritants we experience while we sleep.


Gastro-esophageal reflux illness (GERD) is a chronic condition where the contents of your stomach recede up into your throat and nasal passages.

Research studies have shown that GERD is frequently related to rhinitis. Signs of GERD can aggravate in the evening, when your sleeping position can make the trickle-back problem worse.

Tobacco Smoke

If you’re exposed to smoke throughout the day or if someone in your home is a cigarette smoker, you may experience rhinitis early in the morning. Secondhand smoke can also increase your threat of developing chronic sinus issues.

Speak to your doctor about what medications to take, and beware if you’re taking OTC decongestants: Doctors at Mayo Clinic state excessive can actually make the inflammation worse.

Or The Cause Could Be Changes in Your Body


The hormone changes you experience during pregnancy and menstruation can likewise trigger morning stuffiness.

Around 39 percent of pregnant women experience pregnancy-related rhinitis. Research studies reveal that these techniques can assist safely alleviate the signs:

  • irrigating your nose with salt water and a Neti pot
  • exercise
  • utilizing nasal dilators like Breathe Right strips

The Bottom Line

If you get up with a stuffy nose and you don’t have a cold or the flu, you might be dealing with allergic or non-allergic rhinitis.

Your nasal congestion could be triggered by dust mites, seasonal allergic reactions, pet dander, reflux illness, hormone changes, or chemicals in your environment like secondhand smoke.

Take actions to reduce your exposure to the angering irritants by keeping bedding clean, keeping bedroom fibers like carpets and upholstered furniture to a minimum, and keeping pets out of the room.

Air filters on your AC system and vacuum cleaner will assist, however you may wish to speak with your doctor about antihistamines, decongestants, and natural solutions that will decrease your symptoms.

Ali Gadimov
Health Recovery Tips