Ah-choo! The Science of Sneezing

The act of sneezing is something that every person has in common.  Some people do it a little but some people suffer a lot.  Some have quiet baby sneezes while others have wall-rattling full body type sneezes.  So why do we sneeze?  What influences the velocity of a sneeze?  Is there anything to help control the sneeze?
Sneezing is a response to irritation of the lining in the nose.  This triggers a nerve which begins the cycle of a “pre-sneeze” inhale and ends with a forceful release of air that is designed to clear the irritants out of the nasal passages.    This is a protective measure for our bodies since the nose helps to filter the air that we breathe.  There is also another reason this can happen.  Have you ever heard that looking at the sun or a bright light can make you sneeze?  This is very true as well because the nerve that is responsible for sneezing is very close to the nerve of the eye.
Every person is made differently.  This is why everybody’s sneeze is unique.  Personal control does play a small role in it but in general a person’s anatomy is a large influencer of how loud and how forceful a person sneezes.  It is said by some that one sneeze can expel up to 100,000 droplets into the air and the speed of a sneeze can reach in upwards of 100 mph!
Fun Fact:  There is a theory that the origin of “god bless you” originated during the days of the plague as a well wish to protect people because one of the main symptoms of the deadly disease was sneezing.   
If you sneeze a lot it may be related to a variety of things.  Allergies is a very common reason for sneezing and you may need some help to keep these in check.  Illnesses like the common flu or an upper respiratory infection can cause this as well.  There are medications and treatments available to help no matter the cause.

If you are suffering from these fits please contact the experts at West River Ear, Nose & Throat today and let us help you appease your sneeze.

West River ENT is Proud to Support Doctors Without Borders

As the holiday season ends, we’re reminded of all the things we’re thankful for. Not only are we grateful to support our patients with their hearing concerns, but we appreciate the opportunity to help others in need. It’s not just the immediate people around us that can benefit from generosity; you can make a difference in the world no matter where you are.

At West River ENT, we are a proud supporter of a variety of charities and noteworthy causes. This winter, we’ve extended our reach to support Doctors Without Borders. We’re committed to the welfare of others and are grateful that we can encourage this fantastic organization and the important work they’re doing.

Our staff thanks you for the gift you give us daily – being able to help you with your hearing needs. It’s what makes our job truly special.

Season’s greetings!