The Twotypes Of Sinusitis
There are two types of sinus infection you need to beconcerned with acute and chronic. Acute sinusitis canlast for up to four weeks while chronic sinusitis can last for more than threemonths, and even persist for years. The most common triggers for a sinusinfection are the common cold, allergic rhinitis , nasal polyps and a deviatedseptum . Typicalsigns and symptoms of sinusitis include facial pressure and pain, nasaldischarge and/or stuffiness, cough, headache, and loss of taste and smell.
Youre Irritating Your Sinuses
Dry air isnt the only thing that can mess with your sinuses. Seasonal allergies, cologne, perfume, smoke, and other airborne particulates can mess with your sinuses, especially when suffering from a sinus infection. Unfortunately, other than staying in a hermetically sealed room, theres not much you can do about some of these. If you wear any scent or are a smoker, stop immediately. You should see an improvement in your symptoms shortly after you stop using perfumes, and especially if you are a smoker. The toxins in smoke can inflame your sinuses and make your sinusitis much worse than it is.
Natural Treatment For Sinus Infection #1 Probiotics
According to Chinese medicine, sinus infections andseasonal allergies are almost always related to gut and intestinal problems.This makes sense as 80% of your immune system is actually located in yourdigestive system. When you have an overgrowth of bad bacteria in the stomachand colon, your immune system cannot function properly or fight off any foreigninvaders. The bad bacteria also take over and thrive in unlikely places such asyour nasal passages, causing both acute and chronic sinus infections.
If youhave a sinus infection and/or any of the accompanying health problems we listedearlier, you will very likely have a toxic overload of bad bacteria in yourbody. So to kill off these nasty little creatures you need plenty of goodbacteria . The way it works is the friendly bacteria basically runthe bad guys out of town then take up residence themselves which is a goodthing of course!
In addition to this, certain probiotics produce hydrogen peroxide as a natural by-product. And hydrogen peroxide is a powerful bacterial killer and excellent remedy for sinus infections! .
Best Ways to Get Your Probiotics
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Causes Of Sinus Infection
A sinus infection can either be viral or bacterial.When a virus lodges in your nasal cavities, it can cause inflammation which leads to sinus infection. Viral sinus infections usually go away on their own within 10 to 14 days. Since its caused by a virus, antibiotics dont work.A bacterial sinus infection, on the other hand, is usually treated with antibiotics.Other factors that may contribute to sinus infection are:
- narrow sinus openings
- nasal bridge deformities
Visit Your Local Sinusitis Experts
Staying away from these common mistakes we all make when suffering from sinusitis can help your symptoms improve, but the best way to help yourself overcome sinusitis is to contact your local ENT specialists in Allen Park and Southfield. Our ENT specialists are always here to help you get through your sinus infection no matter how severe.
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Causes & Risk Factors
Any health situation that blocks off the vital drainage channels of your sinuses can cause a sinus infection including:
- Respiratory infections like the common cold
- Hay fever or exposure to allergens such as cigarette smoke, dry air and pollutants
- Obstructions in the nasal or sinus cavities including nasal polyps, deviated septum, or nasal bone spur
- Non-allergic rhinitis
- Changes in air pressure
- Infections resulting from dental problems
- Physical injury to the sinuses
- Bacteria, viruses, and fungi
The five most common bacteria that can cause sinus infections are: Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, Moraxella catarrhalis, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus pyogenes.
Risk factors for sinus infections include:
- Having asthma
- Being in the hospital, especially if the reason you are in the hospital is related to a head injury or you needed a tube inserted into your nose
How To Tell If You Have An Actual Sinus Infection
Even though we often say we have a sinus infection even if its just inflammation or an allergic response, there are symptoms of an actual infection that may be treatable with antibiotics. Nasal congestion and pain under the eyes or around the temples are, of course, main symptoms, but others include the loss of the sense of smell, green nasal discharge, mucus dripping down your throat, cough, fever, fatigue, sore throat, and even bad breath.
Sometimes, a sinus infection will clear up without intervention, but if you develop a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher, have your symptoms for 10 or more days, notice that your symptoms are getting worse and are not improved by OTC medications, or you have multiple infections in a years time, you should seek medical treatment as soon as possible.
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When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider About Sinusitis
Though many cases of acute sinusitis can improve with little to no treatment, you should call the doctor if you experience any painful symptoms. An antibiotic may be needed for a bacterial infection.
If you find that your sinuses do not feel better after 10 days, symptoms have gotten worse, or you have symptoms that initially improved and then worsen five to six days later , you should contact your healthcare provider. Symptoms that continue after about four weeks may mean you have subacute or chronic sinusitis. If you develop other types of symptoms, such as severe eye swelling, or you are just not sure what you should do next, call your provider.
If you have facial pain, and you have healthy teeth, you can try things like nasal rinses and warm, wet washcloths on your face to see if you find some relief. If so, and if your symptoms go away in about 10 days, you probably have had acute sinusitis and it has gotten better on its own. If not, and you continue to feel ill after three or four weeks, call your provider.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 06/04/2020.
What Can I Do To Feel Better
If your doctor has prescribed antibiotics or any other medicines, be sure to follow the directions. Otherwise, sinusitis can last a long time or happen again. Even if you feel better, keep taking the antibiotics until you have finished them as prescribed. This helps to kill all the bacteria causing the infection.
Also be sure to get plenty of rest and drink lots of fluids so that your immune system can work along with the antibiotics to fight and cure the infection.
If you have sinusitis, chances are the type you have is not severe. But it’s important to see a doctor, especially if your symptoms last or get worse. If you have a bacterial infection, quick treatment can help prevent it from getting worse or spreading. It also will help you get and feel better faster.
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Runny Nose And Postnasal Drip
When you have a sinus infection, you may need to blow your nose often because of nasal discharge, which can be cloudy, green, or yellow. This discharge comes from your infected sinuses and drains into your nasal passages.
The discharge may also bypass your nose and drain down the back of your throat. You may feel a tickle, an itch, or even a sore throat.
Natural Treatment For Sinus Infection #2 Apple Cidervinegar
Apple cider vinegar is another outstanding remedyfor a sinus infection. It contains some powerful antimicrobial properties, whichmeans it helps to kill off any bad bacteria and destructive microbes that maybe lurking in your gut and nasal passages. At the same time, it also boosts andreplenishes the supply of much needed good bacteria in these areas as well. Thevinegar in ACV also helps to break up congested mucous and provides excellent relieffrom a blocked stuffy nose, while the rich potassium content helps to dry up arunny nose. So you actually get the best of both worlds!
How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Sinusitis
Now, when you go out and purchase your apple cidervinegar, make sure you only ever purchase the raw, unfiltered ACV that stillcontains the mother apple. This is extremely important as all other applecider vinegars are processed rubbish and will not benefit you at all. Mix up 1-2tablespoons of ACV with 1 teaspoon of Manuka honey in around 8 ounces of warm,filtered water. Drink this concoction 3 times daily 10-20 minutes before food. Youcan also mix 2 teaspoons of ACV in 6 ounces of warm water and using a neti potor eye dropper, pour directly into the nasal passages. This may sting a bit fora few seconds, but its guaranteed to drain and clear your sinuses!
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Probiotics Vs Nasal Sprays
In essence, nasal sprays mainly mask the symptoms of sinus infections. It does not cure the infection nor does it help in chronic cases. Plus, there is always the possibility of addiction. So, if youre just looking for temporary relief from your symptoms, nasal sprays are handy.Probiotics, on the other hand, address the problem at the roots. So it not only relieves symptoms, but it also reduces the risk for future infections. Since its already present in your body, there is also no risk of any major side effects.What probiotics are effective in treating sinus infections?Each probiotic supplement contains specific strains that perform different functions. Taking probiotics specifically targeted for gut health may not work on respiratory infections. Thus, you need to look for a supplement that has strains specifically for sinusitis.One strain thats clinically proven to relieve inflammatory response is Bifidobacterium Lactis Bl-04. Its also proven to be very good for fighting off rhinovirus.Probiotic supplements like Bionaze, which is formulated with both Bl-04 and BLIS K12 strains, are specially targeted for ear, nose, throat and mouth infections. As such, its very effective in alleviating nasal allergies and inflammations.
Did you find this post about Probiotics vs. nasal spray for sinus infection helpful? Check more helpful articles on our blog.
How To Wean Yourself Off Nasal Spray
Afrin, Oxymetazoline, Neo-Synephrine, Phenylephrine, and other over-the-counter decongestant sprays are common short-term remedies against nasal blockages, colds, sinusitis, and allergies. Afrin and other related decongestant nasal sprays These are popular over-the-counter nasal sprays that treat nasal congestion and nasal blockages caused by sinusitis, upper respiratory tract infections, or allergies. Sources: 3, 7
Nasal spray types Nasal spray is a type of drug that is inhaled through the nose. Nasal sprays containing phenylephrine, neo-synephrine, oxymetazoline, or xylometazoline are considered decongestant nasal sprays. These sprays contain an effective vasoconstricting agent that essentially reduces blood flow to a persons nose when the spray is used, resulting in a reduction in edema of the nasal mucosa. Sources: 7, 8
Nasal sprays contain corticosteroids to reduce swelling in the nasal passages. Saline sprays act like mucus to flush out irritating substances before they cause inflammation. If the nose is irritated by dry winter air, salt sprays can add healing moisture. Sources: 8
Some patients succeed by replacing the nasal spray with an oral decongestant, and they can wean themselves off the spray in a few days or weeks. Others try weaning by reducing the strength of the spray or diluting it with a saline solution. Prescription steroid pills or sprays may be helpful in some situations but should be used under the supervision of a doctor. Sources: 9
Best Defense Is Nasal Irrigation
To reduce symptoms blow your nose prior to using a saline solution. Spray two times in each nostril with your head leaning backwards to reduce swelling and maintain moisture.
You can make your own saline solution by mixing one half teaspoon of non iodized salt with a half teaspoon of baking soda and two cups of water. If you prefer, buy OTC saline solutions and sprays to irrigate your nasal passages and sinuses.
Other methods to help prevent sinus infections or to aid with symptoms:
- Purchase a Neti-Pot from any pharmacy to irrigate the sinuses and nose.
- Regularly inhale steam either with long hot showers or filling a bowl with hot water and inhaling the steam with a towel over the head.
- Use a humidifier. It helps in winter with dry forced air heating and in summer with air conditioning.
- Avoid dry environments.
Sinus Infection: Signs & Symptoms + 10 Natural Remedies
About 35 million Americans suffer from a sinus infection or sinusitis every year. Sinusitis is an inflammation, or swelling, of the tissue lining the sinuses that leads to an infection. It can result in mucus build-up and pain. If youve ever experienced a sinus infection, then you know just how unpleasant it can be much worse than a stuffy nose. While in most cases, a sinus infection will simply leave you running to find a decongestant, in the worst cases, it can lead to surgery to remove an abscess that has developed or the obstruction of the sinuses.
In the United States, sinusitis is the fifth most common medical diagnosis for which antibiotics are prescribed these days. The management of acute and chronic sinusitis is also costing this country over $11 billion every year. That doesnt even include the economic impact of lost work time due to illness.
While antibioticsfor sinus infection are a very common conventional treatment, the majority of sinus infections are actually the result of colds or viruses. They will get better as your nasal congestion improves.
Thankfully, there are a lot of natural ways to treat a sinus infection, including the foods you eat , saline nasal sprays, essential oils and supplements scientifically proven to be an effective sinus infection home remedy.
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Sinus Infection And Disorder Surgical Treatments
Coblation of the inferior turbinates
Coblation is an in-office procedure that reduces the size of the turbinate the structures that swell up from either side of the nose that can block the airway and impair breathing.
Numbing the nose takes about 15 minutes, and the procedure itself takes 10 minutes. After coblation, you will need to wait for 10 to 15 minutes to ensure that no bleeding occurs. Most people return to work or routine activities right away.
Endoscopic sinus surgery
An outpatient sinus operation, endoscopic sinus surgery corrects structural defects of the nose and sinuses. Your surgeon in the UPMC Sino-Nasal and Allergy Center uses an endoscope, a slender device with a video camera attached, to guide the surgical tools during the sinus operation.
ESS can relieve chronic sinusitis Isinus infection) if sinus remedies have been unsuccessful.
Doctors can also remove nasal polyps in the office using ESS. After applying an anesthetic to the nasal membranes, your doctor will remove the polyps with a microdebrider, a hollow rotating suction that cuts and removes the tissue. Most people can return to normal activities right away. Other outpatient ESS procedures require a longer recovery time.
Rhinoplasty changes the outward structure of the nose.
Some people need this operation to allow the inside of the nose to work properly. For example, a person with a badly fractured nose may need rhinoplasty to unblock the airway.
Sore Throat And Hoarse Voice
Postnasal drip can leave you with a raw and aching throat. Although it may start as an annoying tickle, it can get worse.
If your infection lasts for a few weeks or more, mucus can irritate and inflame your throat as it drips, resulting in a painful sore throat and hoarse voice. Frequent coughing and throat clearing can make a hoarse voice worse.
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First Line Of Defense Against Sinusitis: Nasal Irrigation
One of the simplest, cheapest, and most effective ways to prevent and treat sinus problems is nasal irrigation. Using a homemade solution, you can often relieve sinusitis symptoms, reduce reliance on nasal sprays and antibiotics, and improve your quality of life. At least once a day, follow these steps:
How Can You Tell If You Have An Acute Sinus Infection
Its tempting to label every nasal issue as a sinus infection, but thats not always the case. Common symptoms of acute sinusitis include:
- Headaches and sometimes, toothaches
Many people believe that green snot means you have a bacterial sinus infection, curable only with antibiotics. Not true. Sage-colored mucus is common with viral infections and allergies and can happen when snot sits in your face for a while before being expelled.
A trip to your doctor may be necessary if you have a bacterial infection, but it can often be difficult to distinguish between that and a viral infection. If your symptoms last longer than 10 days or improve before worsening again, call your HCP.
If you suddenly experience any of these symptoms, its a sign to seek medical attention immediately, even if theyve been present for fewer than seven days:
- Abrupt vision changes
- Continual high fever
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