Your Sinusitis Wont Go Away Heres What You Need To Know
Sinusitis also known as a sinus infection is, for the most part, a bacterial infection caused by inflammation of the sinuses. Chronic and recurring long-lasting sinusitis can render you incapacitated and quickly eat up your sick days.
But when your sinusitis wont go away, what options do you have? This guide walks you through how to identify a sinus infection, what happens if you ignore it, how to treat your chronic sinusitis, and more.
What Can You Take For A Sinus Infection While Pregnant
Instead of turning to quick fixes, it is important to learn what medications are safe. If your infection is bacterial, talk to a doctor to find out which antibiotics are safe to take during pregnancy to prevent your infection from getting worse and causing complications. Otherwise, try some of these safe and natural methods:
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Common Colds And Sinus Infections
A viral infection associated with the common cold is the most common cause of sinus infections .
This virus may jump to other people, causing a cold that may also develop into viral sinusitis.
In only 0.5 to 2 percent of cases do people develop bacterial sinusitis , which is typically a complication of viral sinusitis. Bacterial sinusitis is not contagious.
In rare cases, fungi can cause a sinus infection, particularly if a person has a fungal allergy. But fungal sinusitis generally does not affect people with healthy immune systems.
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What Is A Common Cold
Its an illness caused by many different kinds of viruses, which are tiny infectious particles.
You cant miss the symptoms:
- Nasal congestion
You may also get a cough and a mild fever. The symptoms usually build, peak, and slowly disappear. Some medications can ease symptoms. For example, may decrease drainage and open the nasal passages. Pain relievers may help with fever and headache. Cough medicine may help, as well.
Colds typically last from a few days to about a week or longer.
Sometimes, a cold may cause swelling in the sinuses, hollow spaces in your skull that are connected to each other. The swelling can prevent the flow of mucus.
Managing Your Chronic Sinusitis Symptoms
If you have chronic sinusitis, your doctor may ask you to see an allergist, an ENT, or both.
They can help you get started with treatment, but there is a lot you can do to manage sinus problems on your own:
- Drink plenty of fluids to keep your mucus thin and flowing
- Use steam or hot compresses to loosen up thick mucus secretions
- Keep you environment moist by using a clean humidifier
- Use over-the-counter saline nasal sprays or irrigations to open nasal and sinus passages
- Avoid overuse of over-the-counter decongestant sprays that can cause rebound congestion
Remember that sinusitis symptoms could be due to a sinus infection, but they also might be the result of an allergy or fungus.
Your doctor can help you find out the true cause and get you to the right specialist for treatment.
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Tips For Treating Chronic Sinus Infections
No matter the season, having a cold is never convenient. Its even worse when your cold turns into a sinus infection. A sinus infection will stick around long after symptoms of an upper respiratory infection are gone. You might even know its a sinus infection because you get sinus infections frequently. Perhaps your doctor diagnosed your sinus infection after you just couldnt seem to get better. After all, since almost 30 million Americans suffer from sinusitis, your doctor likely treats them a lot.
The question is, when do you need to see a specialist? If your sinus infection just isnt going away, or if you seem to get recurrent sinus infections, it may be time to see an ear, nose, and throat specialist.
Do You Always Need Antibiotics For Sinus Infections
Not always, and with the rise of superbugs that are resistant to antibiotics, this is not necessarily the best option for treatment. In fact, 85 percent of sinus infections go away on their own after one-to-two weeks, according to information from Harvard Medical School.
However, if your infection falls into the remaining 15 percent that do not get better, antibiotics are needed.
According to information from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, antibiotics may also be needed if:
There is a thick, colorful discharge coming from the nose.
Youve experienced facial pain for more than 10 days.
Your condition improved but then got worse.
You have facial tenderness .
You have dental pain.
If you have been experiencing any of these symptoms for more than a week, we encourage you to schedule an appointment.
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Can I Treat A Sinus Infection At Home
If you have a true sinus infection, you will eventually need to visit a medical professional. But in the early stages you can help ease your symptoms with one or more of these treatments:
Remember that at-home treatments should be discontinued if symptoms arent improving. A timely visit to the urgent care can help speed recovery and get you feeling better quickly.
If you are in need of sinus infection treatment and your regular doctor is unavailable, make a visit to M.D. Express Urgent Care. With 6 convenient locations open 7 days a week, The Doctor is Always In!
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Treatment For Sinus Infection
How is sinusitis treated? There are several ways to treat sinus infections, depending on the severity of the case.
For mild sinusitis, you can get rid of the symptoms with:
- Medications to reduce swelling and allergy symptoms
- Saline solutions
However, your doctor will have to order a CT scan to check on your sinuses when the sinus infection does not go away even after the treatments mentioned.
It is possible to have surgery if the doctor finds structural problems in your sinuses. People with polyps and fungal infections are most likely to undergo surgery.
and book a free medical consultation if you develop sinus infection symptoms.
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What Is Sinus Infection Symptoms Causes Diagnosis Treatment And Prevention
Lying behind your eyebrows, behind your cheekbones, and between your eyes are your sinuses air-filled cavities lined with a mucous membrane that filters and humidifies the air you inhale.
This membrane produces and circulates mucus into your sinus and nasal passages to help remove dust, particles, and microbes from the air that you breathe. Tiny hair-like cells called cilia sweep the mucus to the openings that lead to the back of your throat, allowing it to slide down into your stomach.
A sinus infection occurs when the sinuses become inflamed and swell up because of a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection. The infection can be acute or chronic .
Nasal Discharge: Cause Treatments And Prevention
What is nasal discharge?
Mucus isnt just a slimy material in your nose it actually has a useful purpose. It traps bacteria, other germs, and debris, and prevents them from entering your lungs.
In some cases, such as when you have a cold or allergies, mucus may flow out of your nose or down your throat. When mucus comes out of your nose, its called nasal discharge. It can also be called post-nasal drip or rhinorrhea.
Although its annoying, nasal discharge is common and usually goes away on its own. But in some cases, its a sign of an underlying health problem that might require medical attention.
There are many potential causes of nasal discharge. Some of the most common include infections and allergies.
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Urgent Care Clinic In Rochester And Le Roy Ny
At Cornerstone Urgent Care Center, our friendly and professional healthcare providers will get to the root cause of your sinus infection through a review of your medical history, a physical exam, as well as diagnostic testing. Our goal is to give you immediate relief from symptoms and coordinate your care with your primary care physician.
You dont have to go to the emergency room to treat your sinus infection. We treat sinus infections and a wide range of non-life-threatening conditions that seem to occur during non-business hours or on weekends.
Visit Cornerstone Urgent Care Center at 2968 Chili Avenue without making an appointment. We are open Mondays to Fridays from 8 am to 8 pm and Saturday and Sunday from 9 am to 7 pm. You may check in online to let us know you are coming. We look forward to providing you with prompt medical care!
How Is A Sinus Infection Diagnosed And Treated
Your doctor may prescribe medication. They may recommend antibiotics if your symptoms go on for more than 10 days. , antihistamines, and other drugs help lessen the swelling in your sinuses and nasal passages.
Steam and hot showers can help you loosen mucus. Your doctor may also suggest nasal saline to wash mucus from your nose.
In rare cases, when a sinus infection doesnât go away, long-term antibiotics or surgery may be needed.
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Causes And Symptoms Of A Sinus Infection
Sinus inflammation, also known as sinusitis, is a condition where the nasal passageway becomes inflamed due to an infection or allergies. There are two different types of sinus infections: acute sinus infection and a chronic sinus infection. Acute sinus inflammation can be caused by another condition or infection, such as the common cold or allergies. A chronic sinus infection has a much more complicated diagnosis and almost always requires medical assistance to keep under control.
The two leading causes of an acute infection are either a bacterial infection or a viral infection. While they are similar, bacterial infections have a different treatment procedure than a viral infection, which is why it is essential to get the diagnosis right. Bacterial infections that cause sinusitis are far less frequent than a viral infection.
Depending on the severity of the sinus infection, as well as the cause and type of sinus infection, the symptoms differ. Nevertheless, several more common symptoms apply to almost every case of sinus infections, these include:
- Nasal congestion
The very first symptoms that you may experience with a sinus infection are nasal congestion and runny nose. You may need more advanced treatment that can only be prescribed by a medical professional.
How Do Doctors Diagnose A Sinus Infection
If you have sinusitis symptoms, the best action to take is to go to your doctor for a check-up.
Upon consultation, your doctor will probe your symptoms and conduct a series of tests, including a physical examination. The specialist will thoroughly examine your ears, nose, and throat and check if there is any draining or blockages.
Moreover, your health provider may use an endoscope, an optical instrument, to look inside your nose if needed. A computed tomography scan can also be conducted depending on the diagnosis. For further assessment, your doctor can refer you to an ear, nose, and throat specialist.
It is essential to seek medical attention when developing warning signs to prevent the sinus infection from worsening, which may affect your daily routine.
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Some Steps You Can Take
Whether your sinus infection turns out to be viral or bacterial, you can help to ease your symptoms early on with supportive sinus care:
If your symptoms arent improving after one week, its important to see your doctor. If a bacterial infection is suspected, youll probably need to take an antibiotic to clear up the infection and prevent further complications.
If your infections occur more frequently, and your doctor really wants to establish if they are bacterial or viral, your Otolaryngologist or ear, nose and throat doctor can sample the snot from your nose when youre infected and send it to a laboratory to know for sure.
Note: Antibiotics wont help a viral infection, and taking an antibiotic unnecessarily can do more harm than good. You risk possible side effects and increase your chances of developing antibiotic resistance, which can make future infections harder to treat, says Dr. Sindwani. So its important to wait and see how long your symptoms last.
Most Sinus Infections Dont Require Antibiotics
Ah, . The New England Journal of Medicine published a clinical practice review of acute sinus infections in adults, that is, sinus infections of up to four weeks. The need for an updated review was likely spurred by the disconcerting fact that while the vast majority of acute sinus infections will improve or even clear on their own without antibiotics within one to two weeks, most end up being treated with antibiotics.
It is this discrepancy that has clinical researchers and public health folks jumping up and down in alarm, because more unnecessary prescriptions for antibiotics mean more side effects and higher bacterial resistance rates. But on the other hand, while 85% of sinus infections improve or clear on their own, theres the 15% that do not. Potential complications are rare, but serious, and include brain infections, even abscesses.
Can Sinusitis Be Prevented
Simple changes in your lifestyle or home environment can help lower the risk of sinusitis. For example, during the winter, use a humidifier to keep home humidity at 45%50%. This will stop dry air from irritating the sinuses and make them less of a target for infection. Clean your humidifier often to prevent mold growth.
Types Of Sinus Infections
Acute and chronic sinusitis have a variety of symptoms. Patients with acute infection often experience nasal mucosal edema and purulent secretions, as well as pain in the surrounding sinuses. The location of the pain varies depending on the affected area. For instance, a patient may feel pain on palpation of the forehead over the frontal sinuses. This type of pain can be associated with tension headaches. Infections of the maxillary and ethmoid bones can cause a persons tooth sensitivity.
There are several diagnostic techniques used by medical professionals to determine the severity and duration of sinusitis. The primary factor in making the diagnosis is the presence of purulent secretions. During the first phase of the diagnosis, medical professionals may perform physical exams of the face or obtain a patients history. However, acute symptoms may persist for months or years despite treatment. Therefore, it is important to seek medical attention if symptoms are persistent or recurrent.
Acute bacterial sinusitis is typically less than four weeks. Acute symptoms typically begin with a cold and resolve within a week or ten days. In acute sinusitis, however, bacterial infections can develop and can persist. When this happens, the nasal discharge can be green or yellow and make breathing difficult. In addition, the patient may also notice facial pain or swelling, and pain in the ear or face may be referred to the jaw or ear. In some cases, fever and nausea may occur.
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What Your Doctor Needs To Know
To find out if youâve got more than a bad cold, you need to learn the cause of your symptoms. Your doctor can help you figure out whether you have sinusitis or something else.
Tell your doctor how long youâve had sinus symptoms, and whether theyâve gotten worse or stayed the same. If youâve had them for less than 10 days and theyâre not getting worse, you probably have a viral infection. It will likely go away on its own.
Over-the-counter treatments like saline sprays, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen may help ease symptoms along the way. might reduce the swelling and inflammation temporarily. If you use them, read the directions carefully and only use as directed. Using nasal decongestant sprays for more than a few days could make the congestion worse.
Home Remedies For Sinus Infection:
Uncomplicated acute sinus infection can be treated at home. Or home remedies can also be used along with conventional medical therapy.
Rest Take adequate rest as your body is already working enough to fight infection. Another reason to get good rest is so that you dont spread the infection at your workplace, school or institution.
Water Drink plenty to water to not just stay hydrated but water also helps to flush out toxins from the body making recovery easier.
Steam Inhaling steam decongests your air passages allowing the sinuses to drain easily.
Essential Oil Menthol is a well-known essential oil for blocked sinuses. It can be used along with steam to inhale.
Kitchen Herbs Our kitchen itself can provide the best of natural remedies to fight infections. You can use natural anti-infective and anti-inflammatory herbs like turmeric, ginger, and garlic.
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