Causes of yellow snot

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

When we are sick with a viral condition, such as the flu or a cold, we complain about the discomfort caused by nasal congestion, sneezing, and excess mucus in our nostrils and airways. The truth is that contrary to what we usually think, snots are not our enemies; on the contrary, they are allies of our health. During any viral, allergic, or infectious process, our body increases mucus production to trap bacteria or dust that tries to penetrate our airways through the sinus cavity. Believe it or not, most mucus contains high amounts of white blood cells due to our immune system’s fight to stay healthy. Mucus is a sign that the body is ready to heal itself. Its color variations can indicate the severity of the condition that haunts it and the presence of viruses or bacteria. You will know the answer if you are part of the many people who have wondered why I have yellow snot in this FastlyHealarticle.

Yellow snot: causes

When we are sick, it is essential to observe the color of the mucus when we blow our nose or sneeze very hard; its tone can be an essential signal that indicates the severity of the condition we are suffering from. In general, yellow mucus is an imminent sign of an intense infection. It is the product of the fight that our immune system is exerting to fight the virus or bacteria that may be affecting the body.

Yellow mucus owes its color to its content in white blood cells, responsible for eliminating bacteria and microorganisms to fight infection. Likewise, this particular tone indicates that there is still a little time to heal completely but that you are not seriously ill. Indeed, after two weeks, your snot will return to being transparent and will decrease in quantity.

It is possible that if you have yellow mucus, you also expel phlegm when you cough; this substance is also a defense system of the body to remove bacteria and foreign particles through the cough that may be obstructing the lower respiratory tract. If your snot is yellow, likely, your phlegm is too.

Diseases that cause yellow snot


It is an infection caused by viruses, fungi, or bacteria that causes inflammation of the sinus tissue. In addition to yellow mucus, sinusitis can cause bad breath, fever, fatigue, headache, cough that worsens at night, pain behind the eyes, sore throat, and postnasal drip.

Flu and the common cold

The viruses that cause flu and colds are the ones that most frequently cause an infection that compromises the lower and upper respiratory tract; for this reason, it is expected that when we are infected with any of these diseases, we present yellow mucus and abundant phlegm when coughing.


The inflammation of the airways carries air to the lungs and narrows the airways. The main symptom of this condition is a cough with phlegm, which can be yellow. However, the virus that causes this disease often congests the upper respiratory tract, causing yellow mucus, sore throat, irritation of the pharynx, fever, and bodily discomfort. Bronchitis can be the result of a poorly cured cold or flu.

Allergic reaction

Yellow mucus can also be a sign of an allergic reaction in people who are allergic to dust mites, pollen, or mold. This condition can be accompanied by a cough with phlegm and only improves with the consumption of antiallergic drugs.

Home remedies for yellow snot

When we are very congested, it is essential to take measures that allow us to empty our nasal cavities to breathe better and improve the symptoms of the disease that affects us. At home, you can use some natural remedies for snot that will allow you to feel much better and speed up your recovery. Check out some below:

  • Using a humidifier at night will make the air you breathe much more humid, which will ease your nasal discomfort while clearing your nose.
  • Drinking hot infusions helps to drain the mucus accumulated in the sinuses. You can opt for a decongestant infusion of ginger and lemon, ideal for relieving a sore throat and getting rid of all the yellow snot.
  • Drinking water is essential during viral pictures to clear all the airways. Drink a glass of water every hour.
  • Chewing raw garlic on an empty stomach will offer you to decongest your nose instantly and help fight the bacteria that may be causing the infection. Remember that garlic is a powerful natural antibiotic.
  • Spicy foods cause a potent decongestant effect since they can break the mucus in the nose.
  • Rinsing the nasal cavities with saline solution will allow you to breathe easier and remove all the yellow mucus.

Other snot colors

  • Green mucus: They are much more solid and thick and indicate that your body fights a significant infection. They are green because they contain a higher concentration of white blood cells than yellow mucus.
  • Black snot: they usually indicate a fungus infection and are also common in smokers or drug users.
  • Brown snot – This mucus clears your nose of dust, nicotine, or tar. They signify that your body has cleared your airways of these substances.
  • Red or pink mucus: they owe their color to their blood content and often appear when you have blown your nose many times or you are very irritated, and a capillary has broken.
  • White mucus: this is a sign of a minor infection.
  • Transparent mucus: they are a sign of an allergic process that is not associated with any disease.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Why do I have yellow snot , we recommend that you enter our Ear, Nose and Throat category .

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