Sinuses are small air spaces located throughout the body where mucous membranes protect the lungs. If you suffer from chronic sinus infections, then you may be suffering from sinusitis. This condition causes inflammation of the nasal passages and results in symptoms such as headaches, pain, pressure, fever, cough, runny nose and sore throat.
There are several ways to treat sinusitis. Some medications work well while others cause side effects. For instance, antibiotics can clear up bacterial infection, but they can also lead to antibiotic resistance. Antihistamines relieve allergy symptoms, but they can cause drowsiness. Nasal irrigation helps cleanse the nasal passage, but it can irritate the eyes. Over-the-counter medicines include decongestants, antihistamines, expectorant and saline solution.
If you’re experiencing sinus problems, try taking a natural remedy instead of medication. Our buyers guide explains how to identify the signs of sinusitis and provides information on effective remedies.
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Sinusitis occurs when your nasal passages get clogged with mucous. As a result, bacteria multiply inside your sinuses. These bacteria produce toxins that irritate your sinuses and make them swell. When this happens, your sinuses feel like they're stuffed full of cotton balls.
A number of things can trigger sinus infections. One of the most common triggers is colds and flu viruses. Other factors include allergies, asthma, smoking, poor air quality, and even dental problems.
Symptoms of sinusitis vary depending on what part of your body gets infected. Symptoms often begin gradually, but they can worsen quickly. Common signs of sinusitis include:
If you suspect that you have sinusitis, call your doctor right away. Your doctor will likely prescribe antibiotics to kill off the bacteria causing your sinus problem. If you don't take antibiotics, the bacteria could continue to grow and spread throughout your body. This can lead to more serious health issues.
You can visit the American Academy of Otolaryngology Foundation's website at There you'll find information about sinusitis, including how to recognize the early warning signs of sinusitis. Also, you can read about the latest research being conducted regarding sinusitis.
No. Sinusitis is caused by bacterial infections. Therefore, antibiotics are necessary to cure sinusitis. Even though antibiotics are effective, they won't always completely clear up your sinus problem. Sometimes, sinusitis returns after taking antibiotics.
Unfortunately, no. Although you can reduce your risk of developing sinusitis by avoiding certain allergens, keeping your immune system strong, and maintaining good oral hygiene, you cannot prevent sinusitis. Once you develop a sinus infection, however, you can control its severity by following your doctor's instructions.
Your doctor will recommend medications, physical therapy, and surgery to relieve pain and improve your ability to breathe. Medications include antihistamines, decongestants, and corticosteroids. Physical therapies include heat packs, saline sprays, and steam inhalations. Surgery involves removing parts of your skull to allow your sinuses to drain better.
Side effects of sinusitis treatments depend on the type of medication prescribed. Antihistamines, for instance, can cause drowsiness, dryness of the mouth, constipation, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, and headaches. Decongestants can cause heartburn, upset stomach, and insomnia.
Yes. Most cases of sinusitis resolve within two to three months. However, if you experience frequent episodes of sinusitis, your doctor may suggest additional treatment options. These include allergy shots, immunotherapy, and prescription drugs. They can also refer you to a specialist.