Q. What should I do to regain my sense of smell after sinusitis?

Answered by
Dr. Alok Rathi
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 20, 2021

Hello doctor,

I have had symptoms of chronic sinusitis. My symptoms were congestion, weak sense of smell, post nasal drip, and severe pain. I have been using Budesonide rinses twice daily and all my symptoms are gone except weak sense of smell.

Will my sense of smell come back?

Thank you.



Welcome to

The sense of smell is felt only when the olfactory nerve endings sitting at the top of the nose are accessible and receive aromatic vapors from the air we breathe. In Chronic rhinosinusitis, the anatomical changes in the nose can affect the air reaching the top, which is the reason for the loss of smell. The longer the duration of loss of smell, the longer it takes to get back the sense of smell.

Eventually, the sense of smell comes back, but it takes a longer time.

I hope I have been able to answer all your queries.


Hello doctor,

Thank you for the reply.

Is this because the olfactory neurons have been damaged and need to regenerate? I could feel some pressure behind the top of the nose. It is so weak and hard to sense sometimes.




Welcome back to

It is good to see you have reasonable disease control. However, olfactory nerves (responsible for smell) are situated above the ethmoid. If your ethmoidal issues are controlled, then the olfactory nerve endings are open and exposed to air. Once the air reaches there, you get the sense of smell. The longer the nerves have been devoid of their work (sensing smell), the longer the time it takes to get back to normal.

Take care.

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