A healthy mind has an easy breath. Sinus infection, Sinusitis, is the swelling and inflammation of the sinuses. Sinuses are air-charged tissues in the nasal cavity. Sinuses are found within the cheekbone, around the eyebrows, in the forehead and either side of the nasal bridge. Clear sinuses permit a seamless flow of mucus, thus clearing out dirt and pathogens. With Sinusitis, mucus is trapped, allowing viral and fungi infestation in the nasal canal.
Common Types of Sinus Infections
According to WebMD, approximately 35 million Americans suffer from Sinusitis. The prevalent types include:
• Acute Sinusitis- Lasts up to 4 weeks. Depicts flu-like symptoms.
• Subacute Sinusitis- lasts 4-12 weeks.
• Chronic Sinusitis – Symptoms last more than 12 weeks.
• Recurrent Sinusitis – recurs severally during treatment.
Tell-Tale Signs of Sinus Infection
The symptoms often spread between the chronic and acute types. They include:
i. Nose Discharge
A sinus infection triggers a frequent urge to blow your nose due to nasal discharge. The nasal discharge is yellow, cloudy or green. The ailing sinuses drain this discharge into the nasal canal.
The nasal discharge may also flow and drain at the back of the throat. When this happens, you are likely to experience some sore throat and tickling itch. This nasal drip may cause you to cough in the morning or at night before sleeping.
ii. Pain in The Sinuses
Pain is prevalent in Sinusitis. The various sinus tissues in your head can hurt and cause pain due to inflammation.
The swelling of the sinuses impacts some dull pressure on the affected region. You are likely to experience pain around your eyes, on your nose and in the forehead. The pain in your forehead and eyes often results in a headache.
iii. Nasal Blockage
You are likely to get nasal congestion due to a sinus infection. Sinusitis causes swelling of the sinus tissues, thus impeding airflow. This nasal congestion also affects the sense of taste.
iv. Tickling Throat
The draining discharge at the back of your throat causes soreness and irritation. Prolonged discharge flow leads to coughing.
viii. Ear pains
ix. Bad breath
x. Red and sunken eyes
What Causes Sinus Infection?
Common causes of Sinusitis include:
i. Deviated septum- a bent nasal cavity. The shift between the nasal walls restricts sinus flow.
ii. Nasal polyps- tissue growths in the nasal lining.
iii. Common cold
iv. Allergies- inflammation can block the sinuses.
v. Diabetes mellitus
vi. High altitude hiking
viii. Cystic fibrosis
ix. HIV, Concha bullosa
How to Make Sinus Infection Go Away?
You can get rid of a sinus infection painlessly by home or medical remedies.
A. Home Remedies
Some of the solutions to treat Sinusitis at home include:
• Diet Overhaul
Adopt meals with antibacterial properties. Foods such as cinnamon, garlic, ginger, cranberry juice, and onions are rich in antibacterial. The antibacterial in these foods helps to fight off the virus.
Make it a habit to feed on Vitamin C rich fruits, such as oranges, tangerines, pineapples, Pepino. These fruits are rich in antioxidants that help to flush out the virus from your system. Honey is also rich in antioxidants.
• Maintain Hydration
Keep your sinus tissues hydrated to alleviate the pressure. You could adopt a humidifier to moisturize your air. Moist air softens the dry mucus making it more fluid to flow, reducing the nasal congestion.
You could also use saline nasal sprays before sleeping to curb the blockage. Drinking plenty of water also maintains hydration. You could go the plain water way or herbal teas, or vegetable soups.
• Inhale Steam
Exposing your sinus to steam helps to maintain their hydration. According to cmaj, steam inhalation alleviates the inflammation. You can take consistent hot showers and inhale the hot air.
Another technique to inhale steam is to lean over a hot water bowl. Cover the head with a towel and lean over for 10 minutes and inhale deeply.
• Use Clearing Oils
Eucalyptus oil dilates the sinuses and curbs the dried mucus. Cineole, the active ingredient, contains antibacterial and antihistamine properties that relax the inflammation and itching.
Add the eucalyptus oil to boiling water and inhale the steam through a diffuser. You can also run it directly onto the affected regions.
• Facial Compresses
Apply some gentle compress on your face to relax the pressure on the clogged sinuses. Dip a cloth in warm water, wring it and place it on your face.
Take it easy on yourself. Get adequate rest and shun from strenuous activity.
B. Medical Remedies
Some of the medical treatments are:
Antibiotics fight off the bacterial infection causing the Sinusitis. Antibiotics are often administered for 3-28 days, depending on the magnitude of the condition.
Until the bacteria clear off completely, you are likely to experience diminishing pain. You can get some over the counter drugs to relieve the pain.
Antihistamines are medicines that curb the inflammation caused by an allergic reaction. Sinus infections at times occur due to allergies to specific allergens. These antihistamines help to fight off the allergies, thus relaxing the sinus tract. Consult your allergy doctor in Newburgh NY for the antihistamine prescription.
• Nasal Corticosteroids
These nasal sprays relax the inflammation of the sinuses and shrink the nasal polyps.
• Decongestant Sprays
These nasal sprays contract the swollen ducts, thus permitting free drainage from the sinus tissues. Caution is vital with these sprays as you can quickly get the rebound effect from prolonged usage.
• Nasal Washes
The saline nasal washes clear off the allergens and viruses present in the nasal cavity.
For drug-resistant cases, surgery is the option. The ear, nose, and throat specialist, otolaryngologist, performs endoscopic sinus surgery. The surgeon inserts a narrow flexible tube with a light into your nasal canal. He then shoves away any blockage in the sinus passage.
The surgeon could also dilate the narrow ducts to aid in efficient drainage.
The most remarkable wealth is health. Having a sinus infection is not the end of the world. Sinusitis is easy to treat, with both the home and medical remedies. Practice a healthy lifestyle and be consistent in your treatment.