I underwent my first endonasal balloon therapy session yesterday.
You might ask “what on earth is endonasal balloon therapy?”
Obviously it involves a “balloon” of some sort, right? Well, not quite. The process involves finger cots (or in my case nitrile glove fingers) and a bulb from a blood pressure cuff (though I think my chiropractor has a bulb specifically designed for this purpose). The finger cot (or glove finger) is then placed into the sinus cavities and inflated, expanding the nasal and cranial membranes and joints.
I scoffed when my chiropractor first suggested doing this for my awful allergies and constant congestion. It was a little more than scoffing really, I thought she was insane.
Well, after about 5 years of terrible allergy symptoms (though I tested negative for the common allergens locally) and wicked congestion, I reached a point of desperation. I have spent 5 years sneezing, running like a faucet or being so congested I can’t get any air through either nostril. Anyone who has sat near me at work, lived with me or spent any time with me in general has witnessed the entire box of Kleenex a week habit and uncontrollable sneezing or nasally voice.
Last week I asked LaRelle if she was able to get any sort of non-latex finger cots or devise a way to make it work.
Well, this week we made it work.
It was the weirdest experience I’ve had in a while (well, probably ever really. I can’t think of a lot of things that feel like having balloons inflated in your head!), but once we got going the difference was almost immediate.
LaRelle is used to the tactile sensation using the finger cots, which inflate and stretch more readily than nitrile does, so it was a bit of trial and error finding the point of inflation but once we found it, the opening was amazing. I can’t explain it any other way than my face felt “open”. Sure the nasal discharge increased temporarily, but I felt an openness I haven’t felt in years.
Aside from the aforementioned nasal discharge, my sinuses are still amazingly open 24 hours later. I had to blow my nose a few times this morning before work (might I add I woke up with neither side of my nose so congested I couldn’t breathe) but I made it through an entire day without a Kleenex at work.
I am going to chronicle my experience with endonasal adjustments with reports each day of how I’m feeling and how the treatment is going. Right now I’m scheduled for 4 weekly treatments (on Mondays). After that, I will switch to monthly treatment for 12 months. After a year, it will be a yearly treatment.
For the time being, I am going to avoid all of the other things I had been doing for my allergies, such as using my neti pot, SinuOrega spray or benadryl. I want to be sure the changes are coming from the adjustment, not anything else.