How Is Sinus Infection Diagnosed
Diagnosis depends on symptoms and requires an examination of the throat, nose and sinuses. Your allergist will look for:
- Discolored nasal discharge
- Bad Breath
If your sinus infection lasts longer than eight weeks, or if standard antibiotic treatment is not working, a sinus CT scan may help your allergist diagnose the problem. Your allergist may examine your nose or sinus openings. The exam uses a long, thin, flexible tube with a tiny camera and a light at one end that is inserted through the nose. It is not painful. Your allergist may give you a light anesthetic nasal spray to make you more comfortable.
Mucus cultures: If your sinus infection is chronic or has not improved after several rounds of antibiotics, a mucus culture may help to determine what is causing the infection. Most mucus samples are taken from the nose. However, it is sometimes necessary to get mucus directly from the sinuses.
Knowing what kind of bacteria is causing the infection can lead to more effective antibiotic therapy. A fungus could also cause your sinus infection. Confirming the presence of fungus is important. Fungal sinus infection needs to be treated with antifungal agents, rather than antibiotics. In addition, some forms of fungal sinus infection allergic fungal sinus infection, for example do not respond to antifungal agents and often require the use of oral steroids.
S On How To Flush Your Dogs Sinuses
Step 1: Gently take your dogs muzzle and tilt their head back.
Step 2: Drip the saline into your dogs nostrils. Never forcibly squirt the solution up their nose.
Step 3: Allow your dog to swallow, demonstrating that the saline ran into the correct location.
Step 4: After a few swallows, switch to the other nostril.
Step 5: Reward your pooch for a job well done!
Need a visual aid? Check out this video that shows how to flush your dogs sinuses at home.
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Inhale Diffused Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus oil has a strong odor that often helps patients find instant relief from sinusitis. Research has found that cineole, the main ingredient in eucalyptus oil, helps people recover from sinus infections more quickly than those who dont use eucalyptus oil. You can inhale eucalyptus oil through a diffuser, or rub some on your temples and chest to open your breathing passages. You can even use food-grade eucalyptus oil and place a drop on the roof of your mouth.
Initial Stages Of A Sinus Infection
In most situations, a sinus infection is a secondary infection that occurs after another illness or health concern. For example, you might have a head cold that develops into a sinus infection because of the congestion. Or, chronic allergies can cause conditions that result in sinus infections.
When a sinus infection occurs, it means that there is swelling, inflammation, and infection in the sinus areas. Typically, sinuses are open cavities filled with air. When drainage is blocked, then an infection can occur.
In the earliest stages of a sinus infection, youll likely feel discomfort and pressure in the sinus areas. Its common to have congestion, which could lead to a blocked sinus making it hard to breathe through one side of your nose.
As the symptoms progress, the pain intensifies. An untreated sinus infection can disrupt every area of your life, making it hard to get through the day because of the pressure and pain.
Get Your Antibiotics Fast
No one likes being sick, and having a sinus infection can be very uncomfortable. Getting antibiotics as fast as possible is crucial to healing, and is made possible with PlushCare. Our online doctors can diagnose your sinus infection, write a prescription, and send it to your local pharmacy in 15 minutes. PlushCare can help you effectively, quickly, and easily treat your sinus infection.
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What Are The Different Types Of Sinus Infections
Sinusitis is categorized based on how long the condition lasts as well as its frequency:
- Acute sinusitis usually lasts a few weeks, but less than a month. There is a subcategory of acute sinusitis, called recurrent acute sinusitis, which occurs when someone gets four or more sinus infections in a year, with symptoms resolving after each one.
- Subacute sinusitis lasts one to three months.
- Chronic sinusitis lasts three months or more.
What To Do For Sinus Pressure And Pain At Home
Here are the top 10 at-hometreatments to help ease your sinus pain and inflammation to get rid of your sinus infection faster.
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What Are The Symptoms Of A Sinus Infection
So if you’ve ever had a sinus infection before, you know they feel pretty miserable: The more common symptoms are nasal congestion, discolored mucous from the nose, post nasal drainage, facial pain, facial pressure, decreased smell and taste, says Dr. Duyka. Some patients also experience ear pain, upper tooth pain, sore throat, bad breath, and/or cough.
But here’s some quick advice: That whole thing about the color of your snot telling you whether or not you have a bacterial or viral infection? That’s a myth, Donald Ford, MD, a family medicine physician at the Cleveland Clinic, tells Health. “The green-yellow color of mucus that can develop is a byproduct of our own white blood cells, which we use to fight any kind of infection, viral or bacterial, so we cant tell the cause from the color of the mucus,” she says. When mucus is thick and dark it usually suggests some mild dehydration, and you should increase fluid intake and use lots of saline spray to keep the mucus thin.
Can Sinus Infections Lead To Ear Infections
Yes. A sinus infection can cause fluid to be trapped in the ear behind the eardrum. Bacteria and viruses can grow and can cause an ear infection. Its especially important to get to the doctor if youre feeling pain or pressure in the ear.
When you have a sinus issue, its important to understand that the nose and sinuses are a unit. This means you could be dealing with rhinosinusitis, which is inflammation of the nasal and sinus cavities. Sinusitis refers to an infection of the sinuses only.
There are many reasons why the nose and sinuses become inflamed it can be an anatomical issue or an infectious one. A former injury or birth defect, as well as sensitivities to allergens can cause some of the physiological impairments that lead to sinus issues.
Next Steps & Resources:
- To make an appointment with Dr. Winarsky or another physicians, call or visit our website
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When Is Sinus Infection Chronic
The common cold typically lasts up to 7-10 days. When it exceeds that but does not reach 8 weeks, that is an acute sinus infection. However, if at least three of the symptoms above are present and they last for more than 3 months. Before it reaches that point, you should already seek medical advice from a licensed physician to get the necessary medical intervention and medication. We advise seeing an expert if your symptoms last for more than 10 days.
Do I Have A Sinus Infection Or Something Else
A sinus infection can feel a lot like the common cold or seasonal allergies. Your average cold is caused by a virus. You may be stuffy, have a red runny nose, irritated eyes, have a phlegmy cough or sneeze. There is no cure for the common cold. It will build up, peak, and gradually disappear on its own. Allergies are caused by dust, mold, pollen, and pet dander. Symptoms include itchy, watery eyes, runny nose, post-nasal drip, and sneezing. Allergies are seasonal and disproportionally affect people in the western United States. A cold or an allergy can trigger a sinus infection.
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Lingering Sinus Infection Or Chronic Runny Nose
A lingering sinus infection is different from a chronic runny nose. Chronic runny nose typically comes from allergies or other irritants in the air. However, this can turn into an infection over time.
When the sinuses become infected, the allergies, irritants, or viral cold have caused swelling in the nose thats blocked the drainage pathways. Consequently, fluid and mucous accumulate in the sinuses, where it has become infected with bacteria.
If youve been sick more than 10 days and begin to experience other symptoms like facial pressure, headache, and fever, youre dealing with more than a chronic runny nose.
Related Conditions And Causes Of Sinus Infections
Colds, allergies, and sinus infections can cause similar symptoms, including stuffiness and headache. What’s more, both colds and allergies can cause sinus inflammation. So how can you tell the difference between these illnesses?
The truth is, even doctors can sometimes have difficulty differentiating among colds, allergies, and sinus infections. But the illnesses do present differently.
A hallmark sign that you have a sinus infection is that the illness is, as you’d expect, severely affecting your sinuses. Both colds and allergies can cause congestion and runny nose, but sinus infections typically cause an aching sensation and pressure in the face, including in the ears and teeth.
Additionally, postnasal drop, reduced sense of smell, and halitosis are typically associated with sinus infections.
The mucus associated with a sinus infection is usually green or yellow, though color alone isn’t enough to determine the cause of your nasal distress, as there are many reasons your nasal discharge may not be clear.
Both allergies and colds can cause sneezing, a symptom not typically seen in sinus infections. Allergies never cause fever, which is seen in both colds and sinus infections.
And if your symptoms last more than 10 days, you most likely don’t have a cold.
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How Can I Prevent A Sinus Infection
One of the best ways to prevent chronic sinusitis is to avoid the initial infection. Follow these tips:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for a least 20 seconds, especially when coming into contact with commonly used surfaces. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer.
- Avoid anyone with a cold, flu or other respiratory illness.
- Stop smoking or avoid secondhand smoke.
If you have a sinus infection, stay home, if you can. Remember to practice the following safety measure so that you avoid making others sick:
Can I Get Rid Of A Bacterial Sinus Infection Without Antibiotics
Although this may give you the false feeling that antibiotics are necessary, most people are not so in need of antibiotics. The use of antibiotics for viruses is not recommended within the first week of developing a cold, and they have no effect on viruses. The vast majority of sinus infections can be treated with just about no antibiotics after only two weeks.
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What Are Warning Signs Of A Dangerous Sinus Infection
If acute sinus infection is caused by viral infection, it is usually easy to treat or even will relieve on its own . Typically, it lasts a few days, 7-10 days, and then will get better. But if it is caused by bacterial infection, it is relatively more difficult to cope and usually will take one or some of the following paths:
When A Sinus Infection Goes Untreated
A sinus infection can drag on for weeks or months if you dont talk to a doctor. Sometimes, the infection will clear up on its own. But if the symptoms linger, then you could be facing rare complications from the ongoing infection:
- Eyes: The infection can spread to other parts of the face and affect the eyes. You might notice swelling, redness, and vision disruptions. Severe cases could result in blindness.
- Brain: Its rare, but there are times when the infection spreads to the brain. This problem can cause meningitis or a brain abscess, which can both be life-threatening conditions.
- Treatments: Early sinus infection treatment might include a prescription or minimally-invasive services. If the infection spreads, then it might be necessary for you to have a CT scan and receive IV antibiotics.
- Recurring: Some people notice that the symptoms get better, then quickly return with a vengeance. Chronic sinus issues can result in a need for surgery if not improving with medication.
Most sinus infections dont result in serious complications. But the possibility of an eye or brain infection should be enough to motivate someone to talk to a doctor about the infection.
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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.
How To Get Rid Of Sinus Infections
Skye likes writing about mental health, nutrition, and wellness. She is passionate about sharing information that will educate, and positively affect peopleâs lives.
Po-Chang Hsu, M.D.
Po-Chang Hsu, M.D.
Dr. Hsu received his medical degree from Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts, and holds a Masters of Science degree from both Harvard University and Tufts University. Outside of the medical profession, Dr. Hsu loves to write, learn new languages, and travel.
There are several methods to get rid of sinus infections. Which works best for you will depend on the cause and severity of your sinus infection.
Here are some of the most relied upon ways to get rid of a sinus infection:
- Antibiotics, if the sinus infection is bacterial
- Nasal flushing
- Waiting 1 to 2 weeks, if the infection is viral
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Surgical Treatment For Chronic Sinusitis
Although medical therapy and lifestyle tweaks are the first-line treatment for chronic rhinosinusitis, some people may fail to respond to optimal therapy. In such cases, Ear, Nose Throat and Allergy Specialist performs a surgery to widen up the blocked sinuses and remove any trapped mucus or polyps.
Other situations in which surgery could be considered include:
- When chronic sinusitis symptoms do not respond to the medical treatments listed above, and CT scan of your sinuses reveals complete blockage of one or more sinuses.
- When nasal polyps fail to shrink enough with steroids.
- When a severe deviation of the septum completely blocks your nose or hinders sinus drainage.
- When theres a suspicion of allergic fungal sinusitis. The sinuses in allergic fungal sinusitis get clogged with thick, dense mucus that is hard to remove in any way other than surgery.
Schedule An Exam With A Local Ent
Are you tired of chronic, recurring sinus infections? Then its time to talk to a specialist about your treatment options. Our team provides the individualized care that you deserve, including one-on-one treatment with an ENT. We get to the root of the problem with an accurate diagnosis, then custom-design a treatment plan based on the unique needs of each patient.
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Omicron Cases Often Start With A Sore Throat Headache And Congestion
Dr. Jorge Moreno said hes seen an influx of COVID-19 cases lately at his outpatient clinic in Connecticut. Most of those patients were vaccinated, he said, so their symptoms tended to be milder and relatively short-lived.
Many patients started out with a dry, scratchy throat that caused sharp pain when they swallowed.
Its a very prominent symptom, said Moreno, an assistant professor of medicine at Yale School of Medicine. Its not like a little tickle in the throat. If theyre reporting it, theyre saying that their throat feels raw.
Sore throats were often coupled with sinus congestion and headache, he added, followed by a cough a day or so later. At a , Ryan Noach, the CEO of Discovery Health, South Africas largest private health insurer, said Omicron patients commonly reported a scratchy throat first, followed by nasal congestion, dry cough, and body aches.
Cough is still part of the symptoms, Moreno said. He added, Its not as bad as it was. Vaccinated people, he continued, dont have those respiratory symptoms as much.
Loss of smell was also relatively rare among Omicron patients.
Ive seen a lot more people reporting fatigue as one of their main symptoms, he said. Theyre young people that typically can push through things. They need rest. They need to sleep. Theyre napping more.