What is sinusitis?

woman sitting on a grey couch using nasal spray for her runny noseThe sinuses may be little hollow spaces in your head, but they can really cause a lot of trouble. The tissue in the sinuses can become swollen or inflamed, also known as a sinus infection or sinusitis. Read on for more information about this often painful condition.

What causes sinusitis?

Healthy sinuses make mucus to keep the nose moist and to protect you from allergens and pollutants. If you have a cold, allergies, a deviated septum, or nasal polyps (growths in the lining of the nose), sinuses may become filled with fluid. Germs can collect in the fluid and cause an infection.

It can be difficult to tell if the problem is sinusitis or something else. You may have sinusitis if you have a stuffy or runny nose, a cough, or facial pain or pressure. You may even have a fever, loss of smell, bad breath, fatigue, and tooth pain. Thick yellow or green nasal discharge may be another sign of sinusitis.

Acute sinusitis lasts for 4 weeks or less and may be caused by a virus or bacteria. Some patients have recurrent acute sinusitis – sinusitis that comes back 4 times a year or more. Chronic sinusitis lasts for 12 weeks or more.

What is the treatment for sinusitis?

Home treatments to relieve the pain and pressure include warm compresses, drinking plenty of fluids to help thin out mucus, and over-the-counter nose drops or nasal sprays. Often, prescription medication can treat sinusitis and get you back to feeling better. Your doctor may recommend antibiotics, antihistamines, or a steroid spray. A nasal saline wash or spray or a nasal decongestant spray might also help.

If you have chronic sinusitis and medication doesn’t help, surgical treatment may be the last resort. Balloon sinuplasty, a Propel sinus implant, or functional endoscopic sinus surgery can help.

If you are constantly feeling stuffiness in your sinuses, you may have sinusitis – but you don’t have to live with it! Lakeside Allergy ENT in Rockwall, Forney, or Wylie can determine exactly what is causing the problem and then help you to find relief. Call (972) 771-5443 for an appointment today!

Thanks! Your request has been received. We will get back to you as soon as possible.