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.
Sinus Anatomy And Function
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10. Evans KL. Diagnosis and management of sinusitis. BMJ. 1994 309:141522.
Antibiotics For Bacterial Sinus Infections
Many people with a bacterial sinus infection improve by using the same treatments as those used for viral sinus infections.
But if your symptoms continue to not improve or even worsen, your doctor may prescribe you antibiotics.
The antibiotic your doctor prescribes depends on if you have an allergy to penicillin and if it’s likely that you have a drug-resistant bacterial infection.
The standard antibiotic therapy for bacterial sinus infection in people who are not allergic to penicillin is amoxicillin or amoxicillin-clavulanate. High dose amoxicillin-clavulanate is recommended if bacterial resistance is likely, such as in:
- People who have recently received antibiotics
- Hospitalization in the last five days
- Healthcare providers
- People who live in areas where there is a high rate of community resistance
- People whose infection is severe or lasts longer than usual
- The elderly
- People with a severe coexisting condition, including diabetes, renal disease, liver disease, chronic cardiac issues, and health issues that cause a weakened immune system
People who are allergic to penicillin may be treated with:
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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.
What Is A Serious Sinus Infection Like
When sinus infections occur, theyre usually classified as either acute or subacute infections, meaning they go away in one to four weeks and are relatively minor.
The problem is chronic sinus infections, which often wont go away without intervention. If your sinus infection is persisting for longer than a month, and the symptoms are only getting worse, you may be suffering from chronic sinusitis. At that point, the infection is most likely bacterial, and your body will need the help of antibiotics to purge it.
Its very important to consult a healthcare professional before considering antibiotics, not only because youll require a prescription from a licensed doctor but because taking antibiotics more often than needed isnt good for your natural bacteria levels.
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Symptoms Of Upper Respiratory Infections In Cats
Runny nose, fatigue, fever, or some swelling may be signs of cat infections. Keep an eye out if your cat is pawing at their face in irritation. If they sneeze or reverse sneeze inhaling nasal discharge into their lungs that can also be a symptom. Note any decrease in appetite as well.
Veterinarians usually require a complete physical examination and a history of behavior changes and appetite before diagnosing infections.
Rhinitis is an inflammation of the nose lining. It has many causes, including infections, allergies, or pressure on other areas in the head. Cat rhinitis can also be caused by infections that affect both nasal passages and sinuses, known as dual infection rhinosinusitis .
DIRS occurs when bacteria get into a cats nasal passage through their mouth or nose and then travel down to infect their sinuses. People find it hard to diagnose because pets may show no outward signs but can still spread infections through sneezing or coughing. If your pet develops symptoms like sneezing, congestion, and discharge, treat infections to prevent secondary illness.
Can You Get Rid Of A Sinus Infection Without Antibiotics
Many sinus infections are caused by a virus like the common cold and do not require antibiotics for treatment. If you have mild symptoms, OTC medications may help relieve your symptoms until you feel better. However, consult your healthcare provider if symptoms worsen or do not improve after seven days, or if at any time you have intense/severe pain or pressure, or a high fever.
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What About A Ct Scan
A CT scan is a series of X-rays. It gives your doctor a picture of your sinuses. Some doctors recommend a CT scan when you have a sinus problem. But usually you do not need a CT scan. Generally, you only need a CT scan if you have sinus problems often, or if you are thinking about having sinus surgery.
This report is for you to use when talking with your healthcare provider. It is not a substitute for medical advice and treatment. Use of this report is at your own risk.
Alkalol Company Mucus Solvent And Cleaner
This all-natural product has been widely regarded as the best over the counter medicine for sinus infection, based on consumer reviews. Alkalol Natural Soothing Nasal Wash Mucus Solvent and Cleaner is a powerful however very gentle solution that works tough to remove mucus, but soothes the nasal tissues to reduce irritation and discomfort.
The mixture menthol, eucalyptol, spearmint, pine, and cinnamon packs a powerful minty punch that leaves the sinuses clear and free from congestion for hours on end. Whats more, the all natural solution causes zero side-effects, making it the best sinus medicine ever for little children.
All in all, Alkalol Natural Soothing Nasal Wash Mucus Solvent and Cleaner is a straightforward, safe, and effective product that gets the job done. So if you want a sinus infection remedy that can ease your discomfort at a reasonable price, this is the option for you.
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Treatments For Sinus Infections Other Than Antibiotics
#1: Saline Nasal Wash
Saline nasal wash can be a great way to thin out the mucous in the sinuses enough to clear out the blockage. I recommend starting this early on in the course of the illness to prevent the infection from worsening.
You can even make this at home using 2 cups of water and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt. I would add a 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of baking soda to prevent burning that can occur with use. There are also plenty of over the counter saline nasal sprays that you can purchase. You can use this 4-6 times per day.
Vaporizers are great because they can also thin out the mucous and make you feel a lot better. An easy home remedy, steam is probably the best way to use this treatment. Beware if you are an asthmatic as the steam could cause worsening of the asthma symptoms.
#3: Steroid Nasal Spray
Steroid nasal sprays such as Flonase have been my go to remedy recently and the great news is that they are now over the counter. The general recommendation is to use 1-2 sprays per nostril daily.
But I have found great relief using 2 sprays in each nostril twice daily. At these higher doses it is important to remember that you should use this short term, no more than 5-7 days.
These medications can significantly reduce inflammation allowing the congestion blockage to clear and significantly alleviate symptoms.
Guaifenesin such as Mucinex can certainly break up the mucous, allowing the congestion to clear more quickly.
Sinus Infection Medication For Viral Causes
Viral sinus infections are usually a symptom of the common cold or other viruses. When these viruses take a toll on your body, they sometimes spread to your sinuses and cause inflammation over time.
While you may be able to fend off a full-blown sinus infection with over-the-counter solutions, once youre at a certain point of inflammation, you might require stronger meds that only a doctor can prescribe.
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Dont Rush To Antibiotics
The sinuses are small, hollow spaces inside the head. They drain into the nose. The sinuses often cause problems after a cold. They can also cause problems if they get blocked up from hay fever and other allergies. The medical name for sinus problems is sinusitis.
Sinus problems can be very uncomfortable. You may feel stuffed up. You may have yellow, green, or gray mucus. And you may feel pain or pressure around your eyes, cheeks, forehead, or teeth.
Each year, millions of people use antibiotic drugs to treat sinus problems. However, they usually do not need antibiotics. Heres why:
Your Sinus Infection Natural Treatment
Obviously, you shouldnt use ALL of these remedies TOGETHER. Just choose a few of them, the most available to you, and youre set.
A few combinations you can try are:
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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.
Sinus Infection Or Allergies
Sinusitis Symptoms , Allergies, and Common Cold are almost identical.
How can you tell which one is responsible for your misery?
Well, apparently a bacterial sinus infection lasts longer than the common cold. The mucus tends to thicken and discolor, and pressure and pain are involved in the horror story too.
Allergy Signs and Symptoms:
- Sneezing & stuffy or runny nostrils
- Clear or whitish nasal drip
- Itchy watery eyes
- Pain in the upper teeth
- Pressure or pain in upper cheeks, top of the nose, between eyes or forehead
- Stuffed nose, mucus is thick and yellow, greenish or grayish
- Symptoms last more than 10-14 days
But whatever it is, the following remedies can help either.
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When Does Antibiotic Resistance Occur
Antibiotic resistance occurs in a persons own body and within the community when certain drugs no longer work for a specific type of germ. This can occur when bacteria change in response to exposure to antibiotics so that the antibiotics no longer work efficiently against the bacteria.
Therefore, allergists and other specialists recommend limiting the use of antibiotics unless:
- Symptoms last over seven to 10 days
- Specific symptoms are present
- A fever is present
Related Resources For Sinus Infections
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This article is not medical advice. It is intended for general informational purposes and is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your physician or dial 911.
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Acute Sinusitis Home Remedies
Most cases of acute sinusitis can be managed at home.
Lifestyle and at-home remedies that can help to soothe your symptoms include:
- Rest: As with many infections, getting adequate rest will help your body to fight the infection and speed up recovery. Be sure to drink ample fluids, too.
- Over-the-counter pain relievers:Some OTC pain relievers, including acetaminophen or ibuprofen, may help if youre experiencing significant pain.
- Nasal sprays and decongestants: Some nasal sprays, including nasal steroids and decongestants, can help to relieve nasal congestion. Talk to your doctor about which products may help many are available over the counter.
- Vapor bath:Moistening your sinus cavities with a vapor bath may help to ease pain and help mucus drain your cavities. To do so, fill a bowl with hot water and place your head over the bowl while draping a cloth or towel over your head to keep the vapor directed toward your face. Taking a hot shower or bath may help, too.
- Nasal lavage:Rinsing your nasal passages with a neti pot or designated squeeze bottle can help to clear your sinuses and relieve your symptoms. Doctors recommend only using distilled or sterile water for these procedures.
While treating and managing your acute sinusitis at home, if you notice persistent or severe symptoms that dont resolve on their own, reach out to your provider or healthcare professional immediately.
Which Types Of Doctors Treat Sinusitis And Sinus Infections
- Many sinus infections can be treated by your primary care physician or an Internal Medicine doctor.
- However, it is not unusual to consult an ENT specialist,
- Infectious disease specialist,
- Allergist or Immunologist.
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Inhale Menthol And Camphor
Another inhaled odor that can help open up sinus passages is menthol, which is an ingredient in popular ointments that are used specifically to treat a stuffy nose. These ointments also contain eucalyptus oil and camphor, which combine with menthol to create a powerful scent that immediately relieves sinus pressure. This ointment can be rubbed on your chest and under your nose to deliver its soothing benefits. Unlike eucalyptus oil, this ointment should not be placed in the mouth.
How To Treat A Sinus Infection At Home
No matter if its an acute infection or a chronic infection, or even a recurrent one (sinus infection that keeps coming back even after treatment, the signs of a sinus infection are bothersome. It wont let you sleep well, eat well or work well.
So, how to treat a sinus infection? In this situation, lots of people turn towards the medication. But thats always not necessary or even beneficial. Even the best antibiotic for sinus infection can be useless in some cases as antibiotics wont help you against viruses or allergens.
There are lots of ways to treat the infection naturally. It will not harm you in any way. Besides, these are less expensive, or some are even free of cost. To know them to check out the list below-
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