Sneezing is actually a reflex mechanism in the body which is generally generated with the movement of the respiratory muscle, with the nasal muscles and the nerve intervention which generally happens when something irritates our lazel mucosa. So, any changes in the physiology of the nose; any change means change in the temperature, any itching, any secretions, any irritant, any pungeant perfume, any smoke, any dust or pollution levels. So sneezing can be a good thing yes and can be a defence mechanism of the body and that how the body reacts to any external antigen or any external product which is not good for the body. Onlymyhealth editorial team talked to Dr. Sumit Mrig, Principal Consultant and Head ENT, Max Super Speciality Hospital, Saket about sneezing and why it can be good as well as bad for us.
Why do we sneeze?
As soon as the environment we come in contact with or maybe the change of season like when you suddenly move out of a very very hot room to a very cold room and the body senses, the noses are our sensors and it senses that the air which is getting inside our body is quite cold, so you start sneezing. Sneezing is mainly an antigen mediated reflex mechanism where the nasal mucosa and the nose get irritated because of these external factors. Sneezing is generally mediated by a mechanism where cysteamine is released in the body due to antigens. Then, the body behaves in a way that if there is any change in the physiology in the nasal mucosa. If there is any change in the physiology which is not good for the body, the body reacts in a way that the nose starts to sneeze. So, sneezing means that the body has come in contact with some antigens, some allergins, which the body is not liking.
Why is sneezing good?
Sneezing up till a certain extent can help us to clear the secretion of nose because when we sneeze we try and force out something from the nose, so if there is some mucus which is stuck. If there is some secretion that is stuck in the nose, it helps in clearing the nose. Like sometimes people voluntarily blow the nose out so sneezing is the mechanism where when the mucosa gets irritated it can reflex. Sneezing happens so it helps in clearing teh secretions from the nose.
Sneezing is beneficial in a way that if somebody starts to sneeze in a way then you may notice that this environment is not suiting you so maybe for you it acts as a signal that you can withdraw from the environment. If you go out or if you change the environmental exposure then you can actually avoid sneezing. So, sneezing maybe an initial tinkle to you that the environment around you is making your body allergic.
Also read: 10 Best home remedies for Cold and Cough
Why is sneezing bad?
If you keep on sneezing the whole day then you will start having nasal discharges, post nasal drips and you will start the casket of inflammatory mediators in the body. It is where allergic reactions, infections, asthma and bronchitis take place. They are all the advanced stages of infection, when allergy seeps into your body. You have to visit the doctor in such cases. It can cause a lot of respiratory and ENT problems too.
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