Sinus or Sinusitis is also known as Rhinosinusitis is a condition which develops due to inflammation of the mucous membrane lining to different sinuses. This causes to develop different types of symptoms some of them are acute some are chronic. However, with the treatment of sinus pain, one can get rid of this health issue completely.
Some of its common symptoms include facial pain, plugged nose, and thick nasal mucus. Different sinuses exist in the skull which are hollow cavities connected with each other. The sinusitis condition develops when mucus started to build up and sinuses get inflamed.
Most of sinuses inflammation occurs in the nose which spreads to other sinuses in the skull that is why it is called as Rhinitis. Common cold and flu infections or some viral infections are the most usual condition which tends to cause sinusitis.
Apart from infection, some other health issues can also cause to develop sinusitis by preventing the drainage of mucus in sinuses hollows in the nose. Due to swollen nose sinuses get blocked and creates pain and discomfort.
As per the severity and symptoms sinusitis are divided into different types such as Acute form (lasts up to 4 weeks), Subacute (lasts for 4 to 12 weeks), Chronic (lasts for 12weeks and more), and Recurrent (Creates several attacks within a year).
Chronic sinusitis is one of the most common health concerns which are also known as chronic rhinosinusitis. This condition affects the drainage function leading to mucus buildup. The affected person faces difficulty in breathing through the nose.
Also, the under eye area and face get swollen or facial pain occurs along with tenderness. This can last up to 12 weeks in spite of active treatments interventions. It can affect both young and middle-aged adults and in certain cases to children as well.
Sinusitis caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi, allergies and also as an autoimmune disease reaction. Mostly the symptoms automatically disappear without any necessity of medical treatment. However, if its symptoms exist more than 7 weeks along with fever or severe headache then consultation with doctors is a must.
What is Sinus Pain?
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Sinuses are hollow ducts behind the skull which remain interconnected with each other. Under the condition the lining of these ducts or tubes which connects sinuses back to the nose area gets inflamed then sinuses will not drain easily in a normal state.
This creates immense pressure within the blocked sinus leading to swelling and inflammation growth. As a result of it mucus build up and fluid secretion occurs. This sudden increase in fluid quantity along with the inability to drain normally puts pressure within the sinus cavities leading to sinus pain or headache develops.
The inflammation of sinus is known as sinusitis which can be acute or chronic. The inflammation mostly causes by viruses, fungi, allergies, bacteria or due to any special health condition.
Pain is the most common sign or symptom of sinusitis. When sinus infection develops it can hurt to any of the existing sinuses such as above and below eyes area or behind the nose.
It creates dull pain around the forehead, upper jaw line, teeth, any side of the nose, or between the eyes area. This further can create a headache and fever. The symptoms of sinusitis often persist even though the upper respiratory symptoms disappear.
Apart from fungal and bacterial infection other conditions that can create sinus pain includes tooth infections, nasal polyps, allergies etc.
Signs and Symptoms
Pain is the most common sign or symptoms of sinusitis and the pain location depends on which of the sinuses is inflamed. This pain issue gets severe with other activities of a body such as bending, laughing, sneezing, and coughing. Apart from pain sinusitis has the following symptoms:
- Sore throat
- Nasal congestion
- The nasal discharge which can be yellowish, greenish and bloodstained under the situation infection exists currently.
- Postnasal discharge
- Temporary loss of sense of smell
- Bad breathing
For both acute and chronic sinusitis the symptoms remain same however the basic difference between both conditions is the duration for which their symptoms persist.
Some basic common causes or reason for sinusitis condition are the following:
Respiratory Tract Infection
Any kind of infection in the respiratory tract can cause inflammation and thicken the sinus membranes. This further blocks the drainage. Cold infections the most common respiratory tract infection other than this fungal, viral and bacterial infections are also some other RT infections.
Deviated Nasal Septum
As a result of the crooked septum, which is a wall between the nostrils the sinus passages are blocked and restricted. This causes to develop sinusitis symptoms.
Nasal Polyps Growth
Nasal polyps are non-cancerous tissues which develop in nose or sinuses. It generally exists in the area where sinuses drain to the nasal cavity. Its growth can hamper and block the sinuses or nasal passages.
Inflammations accompanied with allergies can block the sinuses leading to sinusitis or sinus pain occurs. Hay fever is a prominent example of such kind of allergies.
Sinusitis caused by fungal infection is a rare condition. However when it develops the patient usually has some other medical issues that affect their immunity power to fight with funguses. Such medical conditions include HIV, Cystic fibrosis etc.
In the cases of fungal infection leading to sinusitis either the sinus is invaded by the fungi or they react to fungi existing in air.
More than the average number of cases of sinusitis is triggered by viruses infections.
One out of 10 cases of adult sinusitis is caused by bacterial infections. The bacteria already exist in the nose but these are well managed by the body’s defense system or immunity system. However in the cases of weak immunity power, sinus drainage, chili etc. it can lead to bacteria growth and infection.
Pollution existing in the environment consist of chemicals and irritants can trigger the mucus buildup that can obstruct the drainage of different sinuses and develops sinusitis symptoms.
Special Medical Conditions
Some special medical conditions including immune system related diseases can lead to developing nasal blockages. Health conditions that can trigger the sinusitis symptom include HIV, Gastroesophageal reflux, Fibrosis etc.
Nasal decongestants medications or sprays and pain medications are the common types of medications that doctors prescribe in the cases of sinusitis caused by viruses. Also, steam inhalation and cool mist humidifier help a lot to relieve the rebound congestion.
In the cases of special health conditions, these medications should not be taken as a self-treatment process as it can interfere with those health issues leading them worst.
Such health issues include heart diseases, thyroid disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, prostate issue, glaucoma, during pregnancy or in the condition of breastfeeding women.
If these medications don’t work effectively and symptoms exist more than 7 to 10 days and get severe with time then further consultation with doctors is must. Under such conditions, antibiotics are prescribed by the doctors to relieve the viral infection.
These antibiotics should be taken at least 10 to 14 days for complete relief from the sinusitis symptoms. In the cases of chronic infections which lasts more than 3 months, the antibiotics should be taken at least for three weeks.
Even though the symptoms disappear the affected person should continue taking those prescribed antibiotics to complete its course otherwise the chances of further bacteria invading lie a lot. If that happens it can cause the recurrent type of sinusitis.
Over the Counter Medications
The usage of nasal decongestant sprays only give temporary relief from the sinus infections. However, its excessive usage can lead to a negative effect by making your symptoms conditions worst.
Make sure that you don’t use these nasal sprays for more than three days. More than three days usage of these sprays can develop rebound effect in the nasal congestion. In the cases of steroid nasal spray usage such as Triamcinolone, Fluticasone, Mometasone etc. there is no risk of rebound symptoms growth even with the longer duration use.
Under the condition of sinus infection accompanied by allergies over the counter medications which contains decongestants and antihistamines helps to relieve from the symptoms. Some of these over the counter medications include Claritin, Sudafed, Allegra.
In the cases of special medical conditions, such medications should not be taken by ownself without consulting with the doctor.
Nasal irrigations can help to relieve the symptoms of all types of sinusitis including acute sinusitis, chronic sinusitis, seasonal allergies, and allergic rhinitis. For preparing the nasal solutions at home you need to first prepare distilled water.
For this boil the water that you use for general purposes and let it cool. Also, you can include distilled water or can use over the counter premixed solutions to make water distilled. Now mix this prepared light warm water with ½ tbsp. of baking soda and ½ tablespoon of salt.
Spray, this solution through your nasal spray or it can be poured in nose directly with the Neti pot or the sinus rinsing appliance. This effective mixture application will help you to relieve from sinuses discharge and from other issues like flush allergens and dryness.
Antibiotics are only prescribed for the acute forms of sinuses which cannot be cured through other methods of sinusitis treatment like sinus medications, nasal irrigations, and steroid sprays. This works very effectively to relieve the symptoms of this type of sinus but its usage is not safe especially if it requires to be used for a long period.
Excess doses of antibiotics can lead to developing many side effects such as stomach issues, diarrhea, rashes etc. Moreover, prolonged use of antibiotics can cause the growth of harmful bacteria such as superbugs which can cause a major type of infection whose treatment is very complicated.
Herbal medications in countries like Europe has shown a dramatic result in relieving the different symptoms of sinusitis for both acute and chronic forms. In the herbal treatments, oral capsules are prepared with natural ingredients such as Sinupret and essential oils.
Oral herbal mixtures are prepared with sorrel, gentian root, elderflower, verbena, and cowslip. These herbal medicines are very safe as well as effective. However, it is recommended do not try to prepare these medicines at home as its excess or lesser doses of ingredients can cause to develop chronic side effects such as diarrhea and allergic reactions.
If non-surgical sinusitis treatment methods fail to relieve different symptoms of sinusitis and gets chronic and recurrent with time then it requires surgical intervention to relieve the condition. The surgical treatment ensures that the airflow and drainage process between the nasal cavity and sinuses get smoother or hurdle free.
For assuring this some structural changes are done to correct the existing abnormalities such as removal of polyps by removing diseased tissues, deviated septum correction etc. By removing these structural obstructions the airflow and drainage process gets easier.
Endoscopic surgery process is the most common form of surgery process used to relieve sinuses issues. In this method, either general anesthetic or the local anesthetic are used for sedation. In this technique, a surgeon can easily see the internal part of the nasal cavity to the sinus openings.
It is a non-invasive procedure and there is minimal risk of healthy tissues involved in it. Apart from Endoscopic surgery, open surgery is another used surgery for sinusitis concern which is a conventional form of surgery.
The open surgery is only used in the cases of highly damaged sinuses or in the cases of sinusitis where endoscope cannot reach the concerned area to give treatment.
In the surgical treatment of sinusitis, there is only minimal pain involved in the post-operative time which is easily relieved through general medications such as Paracetamol. For preventing post-operative infection risk and for flushing out the debris antibiotics and nasal sprays are prescribed by the doctors in the healing duration.
Before discharge from the hospital, all necessary suggestions and guidelines are given to the patient by the doctors for promoting the healing process. For safety, rigorous activities and unsuitable body postures are recommended to avoid in this period such as exercising, bending, blowing through nose etc.
For preventing the sinusitis or sinus pain and its associated symptoms in the body following precautions can help a lot.
- Avoid smoking completely especially second-hand smoking is one of the primary reasons for allergens growth. So by avoiding it, one can reduce the risk of sinus headache and sinusitis growth.
- Avoid pollutant dense areas to reduce the risk of sinus growth due to the environmental chemicals and pollution.
- Avoid the contact of people who have already developed sinusitis as its viruses can spread easily from affected person to a healthy body.
- Avoid excessive use of water such as too much hand washing or cleaning that involves frequent or continuous water contact as it can develop cold and respiratory infections, leading to sinus inflammation.
- Flying is not suitable for people who have allergy with a cold or respiratory infection or sinus infection.
- Usage of breathing humidified air at home, as well as workplaces, can reduce the sinusitis growth risk.
- Adequate hydration should be maintained every time.
Though the treatment of sinus pain manages relives from it by restoring the normal airflow and drainage then also it is recommended for everyone to use preventive measures as because once someone gets a victim of sinusitis this health issues can last for a lifetime unless surgical treatment is not applied.
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