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Last Updated: Jun 08, 2020
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Sinusitis - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

About Types Symptoms Causes Diagnosis Treatment Side effects Cost Cure Prevention Home remedies Alternatives

What is Sinusitis?

Swelling or inflammation of the tissue lining the sinuses is known as sinusitis. When the sinuses are healthy, they are filled with air. But when get filled with fluid and get blocked, the buildup of germs inside the sinuses can cause infection.

Sinuses are empty spaces in the skull that are linked to your nasal passages. When certain allergens produce swelling in the mucous membranes, it can block and cut off the sinuses. As a result of this, the pressure starts building inside them, and the air and mucus cannot release on its own.

These can lead to pain and pressure. If left untreated these can result in chronic symptoms and can cause long term damages to the sinus cavities. The most common condition that can cause sinus blockage is common cold and allergy agents .

Most of the people treat allergy passively and do not consider it as a critical condition. More people get accustomed to it, and they do not realize that their immune system plays a significant role in keeping the conditions at bay and the greater your age, the more these complications can get serious.

What are the types of sinus infections?

  • Acute sinusitis- which can start suddenly and last anywhere in between 2-4 days
  • Chronic inflamed sinusitis- which can last for more than 12 weeks
  • Recurrent sinusitis- which can happen several times in a year

What are the Symptoms and signs of sinus?

Some of the most common conditions that cause blockage inside the sinus are:

  • Swelling of the lining in the nose owing to allergic rhinitis
  • Development of nasal polyps, which are small growths in the lining inside the nose
  • A deviated septum, bringing about a change in the alignment of the nasal cavity
  • Stuffy-up or running nose
  • Loss of smell
  • A feeling of fullness or congestion in the face
  • In rare cases, pus inside the nasal cavity
  • Bad breath, fatigue and fever

Over-the-counter decongestants and sprays also help to temporarily alleviate the symptoms of this disease. For easing nose and sinus pain, a warm compress can be recommended to the patients.

What are the causes of sinus?

Sinusitis is more likely to affect people who have swelling inside their nasal cavity, like the one that happens because of a common cold. Formation of nasal polyps blocked drainage duct inside the nose, and immune system deficiency or the medicines those that are prescribed to suppress our immune system are some of the other reasons that aggravate this disease.

For children, sinusitis can happen because of allergies, excessive use of pacifiers, drinking from the bottle while lying on the back or from smoke in the environment. For the diagnosis of this illness, the doctor may look at your symptoms and then perform a physical check. The doctor can feel and press the patient’s face to look for tenderness in the sinus area. The doctor can also tap your teeth with a clinical aid, to see if a sinus near your nose is creating the trouble.

How Sinusitis is Diagnosed?

Apart from this nasal endoscopy is also performed on the patient to see inside the patient’s nose and also to visualize the sinus drainage area. A nasal endoscope is a thin, tube-like instrument that has a tiny light and a digital camera attached, which is passed inside the nasal cavity after application of local anesthesia to the patients.

For the treatment of sinusitis, your doctor can prescribe a decongestant along with saline nasal wash. Sometimes to cure the nasal infection, doctors prescribe antibiotics to the patients. As a home remedy, using a vaporizer can be really helpful at times, since warm and moist air help if you have chronic sinusitis.

What Happens if Sinusitis Isn’t Treated?

If sinusitis is not treated at the correct time then a person starts having discomfort and pain until the nose is not cleared completely. It can also lead to meningitis, brain abscess, or bone infection.

How Sinus is treated?

As stated, most of the treatments for sinus allergies are OTC . These can be had in a tablet form or a spray form. The nasal sprays are the first line of defence in the treatment. These can be very beneficial in reducing the swelling in the nasal cavities. They are also the doctor’s choice as they can be used almost by anyone and can be used for milder to medium cases.

OTC medicines are the other source that can be tried for nasal allergies. Most of these medications concentrate on the cold rather than the allergy itself. These are once again used if the symptoms are mild. You can try them for a few days, and if the problems persist, it would be best to consult your physician.

An oral decongestant is another method that can bring you relief. However, make a note that you should not use them for more than three days at a time. It would be safe to consult your doctor before taking a decongestant.

Antihistamines- these medications work directly against the allergy symptoms are widely prescribed by the doctors. They help a lot in removing the cold symptoms like itching and coughing. If all the other medications do not work and if you are getting the reactions frequently, then your doctor might suggest going for sinus surgery to remove the blockages.

Who is eligible for the treatment?

Any individual who is having the nasal allergy and sinus symptoms can be entitled to the treatment. The medications and treatments are highly recommended the moment you notice the symptoms as delaying them can lead to other complications. Also more than the treatment you can consult with your doctor about the ways to avoid them in the first place.

Who is not eligible for the treatment?

If you are allergic to antibiotics, do let your doctor know, so that an alternate form of medicines can be suggested for you. Also if you are a pregnant woman or if you are past 65 years of age do consult with your doctor about the type of medicines you should take as not all the drugs may be suitable for you. Also, do not use the nasal decongestants for more than three days at a time as they can lead to further complications.

What are the side effects of Sinus treatment?

Since antibiotics are used and since the very nature of the medical condition is because of an allergy, there can be some side effects. Do consult with your doctor about your body type and your health status and if you are undergoing any other treatment. Accordingly, the side effects can be avoided by using a different medicine altogether.

What are the post-treatment guidelines?

Post the treatment you would still be susceptible to the allergic reactions, and hence always you have to be careful about the allergens. You have to know what you are allergic to and the foods that are unsafe for you and stay away from them. If you are a frequent candidate for nasal congestions, you might have to shift to a place where the climate is warmer and dust free.

How long does it take to recover from sinusitis?

There is no standard recovery period, and it depends on how much you are affected by the allergic reactions. Sometimes if the condition is severe, you might be under medications for a longer period. It is always better to undergo these treatments at an earlier stage. In case you are undergoing sinus surgery, then the recovery period can take from a week to ten days.

How much does it cost for Sinus treatment in India?

In India, the treatments are mostly are of over the counter varieties and can include nasal decongestants, antibiotics, and medications. If you are undergoing the nasal surgery, then the cost depends on the type of clinic you are undergoing. Mostly they can start from INR 35,000 and can go up depending on the post-treatment procedures and medications.

How to cure sinus permanently?

There are numerous reasons why you could get sinus allergy, and unless you stay away from the harmful carcinogens, there are chances that you might get the infection again. A permanent solution is possible only when you realize your allergy factors and work towards eliminating them from your day to day lives.

What are the preventive measures to be taken for sinus?

These are the preventive measures that can be taken for sinus:

  • Irrigating the nose: If you suffer from sinus then you must keep your nose moist by using saline spray or washes.
  • Keeping a distance: One should keep a distance from the people who are sick and should wash hands frequently
  • Proper ventilation: The house must be properly ventilated on the days when there is less pollen content in the air. Stale air increases the problem of sinus.
  • Be hydrated: If you suffer from sinus then you must stay hydrated and drink at least 8-10 glasses of water per day. Fruit juice can also be tried as the liquid helps in thinning of the mucus. Alcohol and caffeine must be avoided as they dehydrate the body.
  • Energy conservation: Give your body proper rest and take at least 8 hours of sleep as sleeping makes the body recover fast.
  • No harsh fumes: Stay away from cigarettes and cigars as they produce the strong smell and be away from strong chemical odors as they can cause irritation and inflammation of the nasal passage.
  • Take care of allergies: If you are prone to allergies then stay away from the things that can trigger it. Take precautions and try to manage your allergy.

Home remedies for sinusitis:

These are the home remedies for sinus:

  • Saline nasal spray: The use of saline nasal spray helps in removing the congestion. A saline solution can also be made at home. Sniff nasal spray from one nostril at a time and it helps to clear a blocked nose.
  • Neti pot: It used to rinse the nose and it helps in making the mucous membrane moist and also helps in releasing the pressure. In this water run out from one nostril to another thus flushes out bacteria, pollens, and all the dirt from the nose.
  • Steam inhalation: This is one of the easiest processes that you can do at the time of sinus and helps in opening blocked nose and also gives relief from sinus pressure.
  • Hydration: Keeping the body hydrated is one of the most important things that should be done at the time of any disease. Being hydrated at the time of sinus helps to make the mucous membrane moist.
  • Essential oils: Oils from plants such as eucalyptus, cineole helps at the time of sinus. Menthol can also be used for opening the nasal passage. You can pour a few drops of warm oil or water into the nostrils to open the passage.
  • Rest and relax: One must give proper rest to the body during sinus.
  • Chicken soup: It helps in opening up of the nostrils and is used as a remedy since ages. Chicken soup also reduces inflammation at the time of sinus.

What are the alternatives to sinus treatment?

As an alternative treatment, you can opt for herbal remedies and home remedies to be in your comfort zone. You can take steam inhalation regularly, and you can try for deep breathing exercises. Also, ensure that you change your dietary patterns and stay away from foods that can cause you cold and allergic reactions.

Popular Questions & Answers

Hello doctor I am 30 year old n 5 month pregnant. I am suffering from sinus. Now my nose is totally blocked. I am using otrivin twice a day. Without otrivin I am not able to breathe through nose. When my nose blocks my head also starts aching. Steam is also not working. Don't know what to do. please help.

MBBS, Diploma in Otorhinolaryngology (DLO), DNB (ENT), DOHNS (A), MNAMS (Membership of the National Academy) - ENT
ENT Specialist, Delhi
You are having rhinitis medicamentosa. It is due to indiscriminate use of otrivin drops. Read about it. Schedule an online consult for an optimum solution. Otherwise the problem can worsen and cause more discomfort.

I have nasal polyps. Doing jal neeti and steam inhalation. Can I start with lemna 30 and anything with that. Also I put few drops of neck oil before coming to sleep. This polyps has come again after 12 years when I had removed it through surgery.

ENT Specialist, Ujjain
Allergic nasal polyps are notorious for recurrence. They can be treated medically and surgically. U need to have a recent ct pns and your medical history before any comments can be made.

For my allergic bronchitis, well under control, I am taking seroflo 125 and asthalin 200inhalers daily. Can I safely take covid vaccines? My lungs could be slightly weak .hence seeking your advice.

MD - Pulmonary Medicine, MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery
Pulmonologist, Bangalore
Yes, you should indeed take the vaccines. U neeed to be protected. Absolutely no issues in taking the vaccine.

Hii sir suffering from alternative nose blocked and stubborn dry cough which doesn't comes out from last one month in between it went away but when I took some cold items then again it sticks in my chest. Tell me some syrup and medicine for that. I took azithromycin and corex syrup last week and got tested also esr is 19.

MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, Diploma in Otorhinolaryngology (DLO), MRCS- Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, DLO RCS England, FRCS
ENT Specialist, Bangalore
You need to be properly assessed to offer the correct treatment. It would be best you talk to a good ent surgeon who can ask the relevant questions to make a correct diagnosis and give you the correct treatment. From what symptoms you mention, it ...

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