In addition to standard therapy for sinusitis, suggest that patients breathe in steam from water that contains eucalyptus leaves or oil. Eucalyptus leaves can be purchased at a florist shop, and eucalyptus oil is available over-the-counter at most pharmacies. Have the patient pour boiling water into a bowl, add a few leaves or 1⁄2 teaspoon of oil, create a tent over the head with a newspaper or towel, and breathe in the steam for at least 10 to 15 minutes. A “window” can be cut in the paper to permit TV viewing. The patient can repeat this treatment 3 or 4 times a day until symptoms disappear. Eucalyptus mist can also be used prophylactically for patients who are predisposed to recurrent sinusitis.
—— Ali Ahmadizadeh, MD