How Can I Try Acupuncture
If youve decided to give acupuncture a try, its essential to choose a qualified acupuncturist. The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine offers licensing programs and examinations, but specific licensing requirements vary by state.
When looking for an acupuncturist, keep in mind that a licensed acupuncturist is not the same as a certified acupuncturist. Doctors, dentists, and other medical professionals may have certification in acupuncture and a few hundred hours of training, but they may have less experience working with patients.
Licensed acupuncturists, on the other hand, typically have a few thousand hours of training and must treat a certain number of people before being licensed.
You can also ask your primary care physician for a referral or search the NCCAOM acupuncturist registry. Once youve found a provider, you can call your state licensing board to make sure theyre licensed to practice in your state.
Things you might ask before making an appointment include:
- how long the acupuncturist has been working with clients
- whether theyve treated sinus issues with acupuncture before
- how long treatment will take
- whether they accept insurance or offer a sliding-scale payment system
If youre worried about pain or discomfort, let them know. They may be able to address your concerns and help you feel more comfortable before your first session.
Nose And Sinus Disorders
Chronic sinusitis affects 31 million people in the U.S. and accounts for more than 16 million outpatient visits a year and countless time lost. In the past, sinus surgery was invasive, often performed through external incisions, and associated with significant pain. Today, at the Michigan Sinus Center, within the Division of Laryngology, Rhinology and General Otolaryngology at the University of Michigan Health System, our endoscopic approaches to nasal and sinus disorders are less invasive, less painful and yield great results. And our patients know we care about them.
We treat the full scope of nasal and sinus disorders, including:
- Allergic rhinitis an inflammation of the membranes lining the nose
- Cerebral spinal fluid leaks
- Chronic sinusitis with polyps an inflammation of the sinuses that lasts more than 12 weeks and is associated with nasal polyps
- Chronic sinusitis without polyps
- Difficult infections
- Deviated septums
- Fungal sinusitis includes allergic fungal sinusitis and fungal ball plus acute or chronic invasive fungal sinusitis
- Inverting papilloma benign tumors that form inside the nose
- Meningoencephalocele when the lining of brain and/or brain tissue protrude through an opening in the skull
- Nasal fractures
- Nosebleeds: Watch our video about what to do during a nosebleed
- Triad asthma a clinical syndrome defined by three conditions that exist together: asthma, aspirin sensitivity and nasal polyps
Proven Techniques To Relieve Sinus Pressure In The Ear
Sinus infections or clogged sinuses can affect the ears. You can sometimes feel a mild pain in the ear canal, or you may just feel like your ears are constantly blocked. The sound may be muffled, and it can feel a little disruptive. It is all to do with the pressure within your sinuses and the way you ear, nose, and throat are all connected.
It is time to take some steps to relieve the pressure. The good news is you do not necessarily need medication. Unless this is a symptom of another medical issue, you can avoid pharmaceutical drugs often. There are plenty of proven, herbal and natural remedies available.
Heres a look at seven that you will want to try right away to get rid of your sinus pressure within the ear.
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Other Causes Of Sinus Pain
If you have intense sinus pain and pressure that gets worse when you are diving, flying in an airplane, driving up a steep mountain, or participating in other activities that involve steep altitude changes, it could be a condition called sinus barotrauma.
Although the pain will usually subside when these activities are discontinued, sinus barotrauma is a sign of an underlying sinus problem that needs to be evaluated by an otolaryngologist, a healthcare provider that specializes in conditions of the ear, nose, and throat.
In rare cases, sinus pain that doesn’t respond to treatment could be a sign of a serious condition such as nasal cavity or paranasal sinus cancer.
Prescription Treatments For Allergic Rhinitis
If over-the-counter medicines arenât giving you relief, you might need prescription drugs. Prescription treatments for allergic rhinitis include:
Steroid nasal sprays. You already know about the OTC nasal sprays. There are also some versions that need a prescription. âThe great thing about steroid sprays is that with just one medication, you can treat the congestion, the itchiness, and the sneezing,â says Corinna Bowser, MD, an allergist in Pennsylvania. Examples include beclomethasone dipropionate , budesonide , fluticasone propionate , mometasone , and triamcinolone . Budenoside, fluticasone propionate, and triamcinolone are available without a prescription.
If you are concerned about taking a steroid, experts stress that these are very safe drugs. One key advantage of nasal sprays is that they focus the medication on the affected area — in your nose — and deliver with minimal risk instead of circulating it throughout your body.
Prescription antihistamines and decongestants. Your doctor may also recommend a prescription antihistamine pill like desloratadine or levocetirizine . Some prescription antihistamines also contain a decongestant. Azelastine is a nasal spray antihistamine thatâs often used alongside steroid sprays. Antihistamines also come as prescription eye drops.
Also Check: Does Prednisone Help With Sinus Infection
What Exactly Is Sinusitis
Congestion from colds or allergies provides a breeding ground for viruses and bacteria, which can lead to sinusitis. The dead giveaway that youre dealing with sinusitis, however, is a heavy feeling of pressure in your face. You can also blame sinusitis for a pounding headache that gets worse when you lean over, a toothache, and green or gray nasal drainage and postnasal drip. Many of our remedies mimic those we recommend for allergies and colds, since youre trying to attack many of the same issues, especially thick mucus and inflammation. Heres how to treat a sinus infection.
These seven ways to treat allergies could be just what the doctor ordered.
Check If You Have Sinusitis
Symptoms of sinusitis include:
- pain, swelling and tenderness around your cheeks, eyes or forehead
- a blocked nose
- a reduced sense of smell
- green or yellow mucus from your nose
- a sinus headache
- bad breath
Signs of sinusitis in young children may also include irritability, difficulty feeding, and breathing through their mouth.
The sinuses are small, empty spaces behind your cheekbones and forehead that connect to the inside of the nose.
Sinusitis causes the lining of the sinuses to swell up.
This stops mucus draining into your nose and throat properly, making you feel blocked up.
Read Also: Can You Have A Fever With A Sinus Infection
Tips For The Prevention Of Sinusitis
- Minimize the risk of upper respiratory infections, which can be done by limiting close contact with people who have colds and washing your hands frequently with soap and water.
- Quit smoking. Tobacco smoke can cause irritation and inflammation of the lining of the sinuses and nose. Inflammation can result in blocked nasal passages.
- Avoid polluted air. Contaminants in the air can irritate and inflame your lungs and nasal passages.
- Use of humidifiers
When To See A Doctor
Usually, ear problems related to a sinus issue arenât severe and donât last long. Most of the time, they go away on their own. See your doctor if:
- You have a fever.
- You have head, face, or ear pain, or swelling that doesnât get better with non-prescription medication.
- Your symptoms last for more than a week or keep coming back.
American Academy of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery: âSinusitis â âDizziness and Motion Sickness â and âSinus Pain: Can Over-the-Counter Medications Help?â
Divers Alert Network: âEars and Sinuses Instructions for Equalizing Ears and Sinuses.â
Harvard Medical School, Womenâs Health Watch: âWhat to Do About Sinusitis.â
Tampa Ear, Nose, and Throat Associates: âSinusitis.â
Lindsey, H. ENT Today, July 2009.
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How Can I Tell If I Have A Sinus Infection Cold Or Nasal Allergy
It can be difficult to tell the difference between a cold, allergies, and a sinus infection. The common cold typically builds, peaks, and slowly disappears. It lasts a few days to a week. A cold can transform into a sinus infection. Nasal allergy is inflammation of the nose due to irritating particles . Symptoms of a nasal allergy can include sneezing, itchy nose and eyes, congestion, runny nose, and post nasal drip . Sinusitis and allergy symptoms can happen at the same time as a common cold.
If you are fighting off a cold and develop symptoms of a sinus infection or nasal allergy, see your healthcare provider. You will be asked to describe your symptoms and medical history.
Ways To Relieve Sinus Pain
A cold makes it hard to breathe. When your sinuses get blocked, you might hurt too, especially around your forehead, eyes, cheeks, and nose. The pain might get worse when you touch your face or hold your head down.
You don’t need a doctor to deal with sinus pain caused by colds. It tends to get better along with your other cold symptoms. Sometimes, though, bacteria in blocked sinuses can lead to an infection known as bacterial sinusitis. Sinusitis from a bacterial infection might cause pain longer than the week of a typical cold. Your doctor may give you antibiotics and other medications to help you feel better.
Whether your sinus pain is caused by a cold or a bacterial infection, here’s how you can relieve it:
WebMD Medical Reference
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Preventing A Sinus Infection
Treat your allergies: If youre prone to sinus infections, have your doctor check you for allergies, and reduce your exposure to allergens.
Eat sinus-friendly foods: Eat more spicy foods, which promote mucus drainage, and limit sugar and alcohol, which interferes with the immune response. Alcohol also swells nasal and sinus membranes. Eliminate foods that leave you congested. For many people, this includes ice cream or milk, possibly signifying an allergy to dairy.
Consume more antioxidants: Studies suggest that people who are prone to sinus infections have low blood levels of antioxidants. So eat more fruits and vegetables, and consider these supplements: 250 milligrams vitamin C, 100 to 200 IU vitamin E, 5,000 IU beta-carotene, 200 micrograms selenium, and 25 milligrams zinc.
Irrigate To Relieve Sinus Pressure
“Salt water irrigation is the best way to cleanse the nose and sinuses this can help prevent or relieve sinus pain. You can use an over-the-counter saline nasal spray, but I recommend using a sinus rinse bottle, neti pot, or bulb syringe irrigation kit that you can get at the drugstore,” advises Das.
Try this commonly-used, easy-to-make nasal irrigation solution with your own sinus irrigation kit: Fill a clean 8-ounce glass with distilled or sterilized lukewarm water. Do not use tap water unless it has been boiled for at least 1 minute . Add 1/2 teaspoon of non-iodized salt and a pinch of baking soda. And be sure to clean all equipment and make a fresh batch of solution each time you use your kit.
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Over The Counter Medications
For help alleviating sinus pressure and pain, try ibuprofen and a decongestant. Some medications include a combination of pain reliever and decongestant.
Mild antihistamines like Claritin and Allegra are helpful in moderation. Strong antihistamines like Benadryl are often way too drying. Be careful not to take antihistamines too often.
Even though you want your nose to stop running, too many antihistamines can make it more likely that youll get sinus infections in the future.
Drugs like Mucinex and Flonase can also be helpful in thinning the mucus in your nose and sinuses.
If you use Afrin, make sure you stop after three days. Though it can seem like a miracle drug, using it more than three days in a row can lead to something called rebound congestion. In other words, when you stop using the Afrin after continuous use, your nose becomes more congested than it was in the first place!
How To Cure Chronic Sinusitis And Sinus Headaches Permanently
Chronic sinusitis and sinus headaches can have a significant impact on your health and wellbeing. It can be difficult to get on with your usual routine when youre in pain or suffering from serious congestion. You can also feel very upset and hopeless when it seems that the problem keeps coming back. What can you do to cure sinus problems permanently?
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How Coughing And Sinus Infections Are Related To Each Other
When you experience excess mucus draining into your throat, this is actually known as post nasal drip, and it is just one of the many cold symptoms also associated with chronic sinus infections. Post nasal drip doesnt just cause coughing, though. It can also bring about a sore throat, a hoarse voice, nausea, and even bad breath.
But why exactly does post nasal drip during a sinus infection lead to coughing? Well, imagine mucus running down your throat. Is your throat irritated? Probably. Do you feel a tickling sensation? Most likely. All of these sensations can trigger a reaction that reaction is coughing.
Unfortunately, all the nose blowing and coughing that youll continue to do as a result of the mucus drainage will only lead to more mucus and more irritation. This is why its important to understand the best way to stop a sinus infection and relieve post nasal drip.
Use A Cold Pack On The Area
You can apply cold to the affected area for instant relief from the pressure. This can be a little tricky with the ears, but it will depend on where the pain originates from. Just because you feel the pressure in your ears, doesnt mean this is the first place it will be. You could find treating the sinus blockage or pressure around the nose area helps to relieve the pain in your ears.
Use a cold pack around your sinuses or your head. Sit with it on your skin for around 20 minutes. Dont put ice directly on your skin! Make sure it is covered with something to avoid freezer burns and discomfort.
If you do not have a cold pack or you do not like using ice, you can also use a cold washcloth. Have a bowl of cold water and dip the washcloth inside. Wring out the excess water and then apply it directly to wherever the pressure is.
Heat does not work as well as cold. The heat will draw out the moisture and make the symptoms worse. Only breathing in steam helps, as this helps to add moisture to the area.
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Middle And External Ear Infections
A middle ear infection can cause ear congestion, as well as dizziness, ear pain, and occasionally fluid drainage. Theyre usually caused by colds or other respiratory problems that travel to the middle ear through the Eustachian tube.
External ear infections, also known as swimmers ear, are usually caused by water that remains in your ear after swimming or bathing, providing an ideal breeding ground for bacteria. You may experience pain, itching, redness, and clear fluid drainage or a discharge of pus.
Ear infections often resolve without treatment. Over-the-counter ear drops and pain medication can help relieve your symptoms. If your symptoms are severe or last more than two days, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics.
Hum Your Way To Sinus Pain Relief
“Some people report that humming for one hour improves sinus pain,” says Das. Researchers in Sweden have found that humming can keep your sinuses clear. How could that be possible? Humming may increase both airflow through your sinuses and the level of nitric oxide in your sinuses. The combination of nitric oxide and airflow may reduce your risk of sinusitis. So if you have a common cold or allergies, want to prevent a sinus infection, and know a happy tune that you don’t mind hearing for an hour, you may want to try a little humming.
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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