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Cleaning Out Sinuses with Garlic

Updated: Dec 22, 2021

Sticking garlic cloves in one’s nose to help treat congestion is one of TikTok’s latest trends. One TikTok of a woman with garlic in her nose has been viewed nearly 4.4 million times.

The experts agree that garlic cloves inserted into nostrils will not relieve stuffy noses and inflamed sinuses. But doctors do understand why people might think garlic works: After people remove the garlic, their noses run. But that doesn’t happen for the reasons they think.

“Anytime you block the opening of the nose, it’s going to fill with mucous,” Dr. Jay Youngerman, chief of otolaryngology at Northwell Health Plainview Hospital in New York, told TODAY. “That’s just the nose’s response to being blocked.”

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