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How to Clear a Stuffy Nose in 1 Min (Easy Breathing Exercise)

Avatar of Dr Artour Rakhimov, Buteyko Breathing Practitioner and Master TrainerBy Dr. Artour Rakhimov, Alternative Health Educator and Author
- Medically Reviewed by Naziliya Rakhimova, MD
- Last updated on September 20, 2018

Effects of stuffy nose remedy and overbreathing on brain O2This simple breathing exercise (how to clear a stuffy nose or get rid of nasal congestion) was developed by Russian doctors practicing the Buteyko breathing method. Around 200 physicians taught this home remedy to their patients with blocked noses.

Over 85% of the people who tried this natural treatment could make their stuffy nose clear in less than 1 minute, if they followed the instructions correctly. This remedy has been tested on more than 50,000 people.

Why stuffy nose problem is so common?

Hyperventilation History Graph

Numerous medical studies have shown that modern people or "normal subjects" breathe about two times more air than what is considered the norm. Hence, overbreathing and a lack of CO2 further constrict blood vessels and airways. In addition, hypocapnia (CO2 deficiency) creates tissue hypoxia (low body-oxygen content), and this suppresses the immune system. As a result, your sinuses become the breeding ground for bacteria, viruses, fungi and other pathogens. It has been shown in Buteyko's research that the reason that one's nose gets blocked or stuffy is due to a CO2 deficiency that in turn is caused by breathing too much.

Instructions: how to unclog and stop a stuffy nose

Woman with stuffy or blocked nose Sit down and after your usual exhalation, pinch your nose to hold your breath, while nodding your head up and down. Hold your breath as long as possible but remember to breathe only through your nose when you later release your nose to make an inhalation. When you get a strong desire to breathe, release the nose and take a small gentle inhalation (not as much as you want). Then, for the exhalation just relax your body muscles.

For your next breath in, take a small inhale and relax for the exhale. Your goal is to breathe less air than before this breathing exercise, but with total relaxation of all body muscles. Hence, you are going to have an air hunger or the desire to breathe more for about 1-2 minutes.

How to sleep with a stuffy nose

You can fall asleep faster while by applying the same breathing remedy. Yes, the same exercise helps to get to sleep fast.

Reduced breathing to clear a stuffy or blocked nose

In less than 1 or, maximum, 2 minutes you will notice that your stuffy nose gets clear. Your next goal is to continue this reduced breathing, to keep the nose clear all the time.

Most likely, the nose will get blocked later (e.g., at night during sleep). If it does happen, you will need to learn the technique that is called "mouth taping". Search this website for the manual that is called "How to maintain nasal breathing 24/7" or see Resources below.

This extremely popular YouTube video "How to Get Rid of a Stuffy Nose" (clear your nose in 40 seconds) explains this breathing exercise.

How does it help to get rid of a stuffy nose

How does it work? When you hold your breath and do some physical movements (nodding your head or walking, but with the nose pinched), your airways, lungs, blood-and-body cells, including the stuffy nose, accumulate more carbon dioxide. CO2 is the most powerful known vasodilator and dilator of all tubular layers of smooth muscles, including those in the sinuses, bronchi and bronchioles. As a result, airways dilate and this leads to quick relief of nasal congestion. Additional effects are due to dilation of arteries and arterioles when arterial CO2 is increased. CO2-induced vasodilation improves blood-and-oxygen supply to your stuffy nose (see CO2-related links for clinical studies).

Both of these mechanisms, vasodilation and dilation of airways, have physiological similarities since the expansion mechanism is based on relaxation of all smooth muscles of the human body due to the higher CO2 content in the arterial blood.

Permanent solution to have a blocked nose clear 24/7

The solution to all these airway-constriction problems is to increase your body CO2-and-oxygen content 24/7 by reducing your breathing. There is a simple body-oxygen test that provides the criterion (a number for you to achieve) for a clear nose, more energy, better sleep, etc... It is provided right here below.

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YouTube video:
Stuffy Nose Natural Remedy - The same breathing exercise is explained on YouTube
Web pages:
How to Unblock a Nose in 2-3 Minutes Using Breathing Exercise - Steps Exercise - walking with breath holding, or another version of breath holding exercise
Mouth vs. Nose Breathing: Medical review of main physiological effects
How to Tape Mouth at Night or mouth-taping technique to prevent mouth breathing during sleep
Best Sleeping Position Medical Research Summary.


  1. This amazing medical study actually claims that people with sinusitis overbreathe: Bartley James, Nasal congestion and hyperventilation syndrome, American Journal of Rhinology, 2005 Nov-Dec; vol 19(6): p. 607-11.
  2. Nasal congestion (From Wikipedia)
  3. How to Treat Nasal Congestion and Sinus Pressure (From WebMD)
  4. Nasal congestion (From MAYO CLINIC)
Or go back to Symptoms

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