Breathe clear with Otrivin

Posted May 1st, 2024

The respiratory system works so that you breathe in and out comfortably at rest where the least effort is required to move air – and you’re probably not conscious of your breathing. When you exercise, you need to move more air. To do this you can take bigger breaths or breathe more quickly – usually both.1

What function does the nose have in breathing?

Your nose helps filter the air you inhale before it reaches the lungs.
Air may contain pollutants such as:

  • Allergens:2,3



Dust Mites

Pet Dander

  • Air pollutants:

Particulate matter such as dust4

Gaseous pollutants such as ozone (O3), nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2)4

Volatile organic compounds released from common household products such as detergents, paints and fuels5

How does a blocked nose affect breathing?

If the mucous membrane in your nose becomes irritated, causing inflammation, you can end up with a stuffy, or blocked nose.  This makes breathing through your nose difficult, making it hard to sleep and making you feel tired.6

Using a nasal decongestant can help you relieve congestion and breathe more easily, day and night. The main active ingredient in Otrivin Adult Nasal Spray is xylometazoline, which starts to relieve nasal congestion in 5 minutes and continues to work for up to 10 hours.6

Always read the label and follow the directions for use.



1.     A.Vogel. Constant blocked nose. Available at: (last accessed April 2020)

2.    Eccles, R. 2009. The nose and control of nasal airflow. In: Adkinson N, Bochner B, Burks A, Busse W, Holgate S, Lemanske R, O'Hehir R, eds. Middleton’s Allergy, Principles and Practice, 8thedn - Vol. 1. Philadelphia: Mosby, 640 – 51

3.    World Allergy Organization. White Book on Allergy: Update 2013. Available from: (last accessed March 2020)

4.    World Health Organisation. Ambient (outdoor) air quality and health. Available from: (last accessed March 2020)

5.    United States Environmental Protection Agency. Volatile organic compounds' impact on indoor air quality. Available at: (last accessed March 2020)

6.    Eccles R, Martenssen K, Chen S. Effects of intranasal xylometazoline, alone or in combination with ipratropium, in patients with common cold. Curr Med Res Opin. 2010;26:889–899

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