A clogged and stuffy nose is one of the leading signs of a sinus infection or sinusitis. In addition to a clogged nose, you may experience headaches, cough, fever, and fatigue. While sinus infections usually go away in a few days, it’s best to address them in the early stages.
What Is A Sinus Infection?
A sinus infection occurs when fluid collects in your sinuses — the air-filled cavities in the face. Sinusitis can cause mucus to build up and drainage to slow down. The common cold is the typical cause of sinusitis. However, it can also be the result of allergies, fungal infections, and bacterial infections.
Some people are more prone to developing sinusitis than others. Here are situations when you are at risk of developing sinus infection:
- Having had a recent bout of the common cold
- Seasonal allergies
- Smoking and secondhand smoke exposure
- Structural abnormalities within the sinuses
- Weak immune system
Symptoms Of A Sinus Infection
If you experience a combination of the following symptoms, it might mean you are suffering from sinusitis:
- Bad breath
- Ear pressure
- Nasal congestion or blockage
- Impaired sense of smell
- Pain, pressure, swelling, and tenderness around the eyes, cheeks, forehead, or nose
Treatment For Sinusitis
If you feel the symptoms of sinusitis setting in, here are easy tips you can try to ease sinus pain and pressure:
- Inhale steam from a hot shower or a bowl of hot water
- Place a warm compress on top of the forehead and nose
- Use a saline nasal spray or decongestant
- Take over-the-counter medicines
Before taking medications, make sure to speak to a medical professional for sinus infection treatment. In general, kids younger than six months old can only take acetaminophen. Do not give aspirin to kids of any age unless prescribed by a doctor.
Most sinus infections clear up on their own with no intervention. However, symptoms that do not improve after ten days may warrant a visit to the doctor. If you or your child experience these symptoms, get checked by your healthcare provider right away:
- Fever that does not go away after three to four days
- Multiple sinus infections within the past year
- Severe symptoms like intense facial pain or headache
- Worse symptoms after initial improvement
Prevention Of Sinus Infections
As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. You can take steps to prevent sinus infections. In general, it will help if you make positive lifestyle decisions to boost your immune system and avoid catching diseases from others.
While bacterial sinusitis is not contagious, many viruses can cause it to spread from one person to another. These tips will reduce the likelihood of contracting sinus infections:
- Avoid smoking
- Take medication and precautions for your allergies
- Stay away from people with colds
- Wash your hands frequently
- Use a humidifier indoors if the air is dry
- Get the flu vaccine, pneumococcal vaccine, and other recommended vaccines
- Rinse out your nose frequently
Sinus Infection Relief In Northeastern Illinois
While home remedies can resolve mild cases of sinus infections, they may not be sufficient in severe cases. This is where medical professionals may need to step in to prescribe medication and non-invasive treatments.
At Oak Brook Allergists, our board-certified allergists can diagnose and treat allergies of all kinds. Say goodbye to sinusitis with the help of our excellent specialists.
Call us at (630) 574-0460to to request an appointment. For your convenience, you can also contact us online. We have offices in DuPage, Elmhurst, Naperville, and Plainfield to serve you. Let us help you breathe better!