Roughly 35 million Americans experience sinusitis, which can be acute or chronic (referred to as chronic sinusitis). Sinusitis involves the sinuses - hollow cavities in the front of your skull which comprise tissue that makes mucus. This mucus provides moisture to the nasal cavity and also helps to filter the air we breathe by removing dust and other microbes; protecting from potentially harmful allergens and pollutants.
Sinusitis, commonly known as a sinus infection, occurs when the sinus cavities become filled with fluid. This produces inflammation and swelling, creating the symptoms of a sinus infection.
The ear, nose, and throat specialists at Otolaryngology Associates offer individualized care plans that help manage the symptoms of sinusitis. Call our practice today to schedule your appointment.
What causes sinusitis?
Other causes of sinusitis include blocked drainage ducts and immunity issues. Meanwhile, sinusitis in children is more likely to be triggered by:
- Using pacifiers
- Drinking from a bottle while lying down
- Living in a smoky environment
- Colds and viruses
What are the symptoms of sinusitis?
- Bad Breath
- Jaw ache and/or toothache
- Loss of smell
- Pain or pressure around the forehead, nose, and cheeks
- Running nose
- Sore throat
People are exposed to these types of allergens through the air, meaning they are inhaled. The most common types of airborne allergies include:
- Pollen: the most pervasive type of allergy, also known as hay fever. Pollen is a substance that is released by trees to fertilize other plants. This occurs seasonally, producing seasonal allergies (spring being the season with the highest pollen count).
- Molds: mold is a type of fungi that grows in indoor and outdoor spaces that retain more moisture (bathrooms, basements, trash piles etc.).
- Animal Dander: the skin and hair that pets shed as well as their saliva can also be the source of allergens.
- Dust: dust mites are microscopic insects that are part of the dust that accumulates in homes or apartments.
Types of Sinusitis
Though sinusitis can be experienced by all people, there are a few factors that can increase the risk of developing a sinus infection. These include:
- Allergies: more than 50 million people navigate allergies every year. Exposure to allergens can lead to sinus infections or worsen symptoms of sinusitis.
- Immune system disorders
- The common cold or other viral infections
Our team is trained to diagnose and treat the different types of sinusitis to create the most effective care plan for you.
What is the treatment for sinusitis?
Sinusitis treatment depends on the severity of your illness. For a simple sinus infection (acute), the best treatment option could be over-the-counter medications. This includes decongestants and saline nasal washes which alleviate symptoms. Additionally, at-home solutions like inhaling steam or applying warm compresses can also be helpful. Your healthcare provider may also prescribe a course of antibiotics that you should complete.
In the case of chronic sinusitis, your doctor may recommend surgical treatment options. This includes endoscopic surgery, like balloon sinuplasty.
Sinusitis is an uncomfortable, painful condition that affects your quality of life. Partner with Otolaryngology Associates and begin treatment today. Call our team today to schedule an appointment.