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FAQ37: What about "Sneezing"?
by David Blevins

Yes, I have ACTUALLY thought about the sneeze and have experimented with stopping them. Really! (Can you tell I am retired and have time on my hands?)

Anatomical - the reason why we sneeze is the same as before. . . there is some irritant in the nose triggering it. Outside agents like dust in the air, pollen, germs, etc., still find their way into the nose and nasal cavity. They produce the familiar "tickle" which triggers the sneeze response.

Because of our changed anatomy the sneeze is less effective than before becoming larys since lung air is no longer blasted through the nose to clear it.


Is it desirable to prevent sneezes? Sure, but only if you find another way to keep your nose clean (no pun intended). Mother Nature usually gets it right and the sneeze serves that purpose of cleaning foreign stuff out of da snoz.

(1) when you first feel a sneeze coming on quickly grasp your nose between your thumb and forefinger and squeeze and wiggle it. This will stop most sneezes which are caused by irritants in that area and may break the response sequence for tickles further up in your nasal cavity.

(2) figure out a way to blow your nose. Some larys have learned to generate enough pressure to gently blow one side and then the other. Some TEP users say they can move enough air through the prosthesis to blow their noses. I haven't learned that to this point. (Perhaps we could have an impromptu lab session in Atlanta?) Or you can just use Kleenex periodically to keep your nose clean. Some also use a nasal douche of salt water and report favorable results.

(3) keeping nose hairs trimmed reduces part of the triggering mechanism for sneezes

As to the theological and philosophical issues, I personally turn my nose up on them.

Keeping my nose to the grindstone and trying to keep my nose out of other peoples' business,

: )o

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