Ways To Recognize Serious Signs Of Sinus Infections
The length of the infection is an important determinant of the seriousness of the infection.
I usually consider most infections less than 3 weeks to be viral or inflammation related to congestion. At this point, the best treatment is usually medications that decrease the congestion and inflammation. This in turn will alleviate the symptoms and ultimately cure the illness.
When the illness continues beyond 3 weeks, bacterial infection can begin to develop. Though antibiotics can be considered at this point, other treatments may still be the best answer if they have not yet been given a try.
#2: Mucous Color
I will dispel a myth right here and now. Yellowish/greenish mucous does not necessarily mean the infection is bacterial.
Viruses can cause the same color mucous. The reason for the mucous is generally not the actual bacteria or virus, but the bodys immune response to the intruder.
So dont worry just because you see a colored mucous when you blow your nose. This will also improve as the infection abates.
#3: Sinus Pain
Sinus pain can occur anytime throughout a sinus infection. This is normal and means there is inflammation in the sinuses, as we discussed previously.
However, severe pain, redness over the skin, hardened skin over the sinuses, or even a severe headache are not generally normal and can indicate a bacterial infection.
A fever can be caused by both viruses and bacteria. So how do you differentiate between the two?
Balloon Sinuplasty: A Sinusitis Treatments With Promising Benefits For Asthmatics
The effects of sinusitis on the body can be harsh, especially since they tend to make other conditions worse. Luckily, a new sinusitis treatment, known as balloon sinuplasty, has successfully helped many sinusitis patients from those struggling with chronic sinusitis and sleep apnea, to those seeking deviated septum relief, and to those who have both sinusitis and asthma.
As an in-office, minimally-invasive treatment that requires little to no recovery time, balloon sinuplasty provided thousands of patients with long-term relief after just 20 minutes. The inspiring balloon sinuplasty before and after testimonials point to a hopeful future for asthmatics with sinusitis.
Types Of Sinus Infections
There are three types of sinus infectionsacute, chronic and fungal. One significant difference between them is how long they last.
- Acute sinusitis. Also known as a short-term sinus infection, it often starts with seasonal allergies or common viral infections like the cold. Acute sinusitis lasts four weeks or less.
- Chronic sinusitis. Acute sinusitis becomes chronic sinusitis when it lasts longer than 12 weeks. Long-term sinusitis can be persistent, even after medical treatment.
- Fungal sinusitis. As its name suggests, fungal sinus infections are caused by fungus. Your provider may recommend nasal surgery, fungal ointments and other treatment options to ease your fungal sinus infection symptoms.
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What Causes A Sinus Infection
Before you can begin finding relief from the symptoms of a sinus infection, its important to understand whats causing it.
One of the most common causes of sinusitis is a virtual infection, such as the common cold or influenza. As a result, most people have experienced at least a mild sinus infection at some point.
Its not common for a viral infection to develop into a secondary bacterial infection but it does happen occasionally. And, in some cases, fungal infections may be the source of the sinusitis symptoms.
People who suffer from allergies , nasal polyps, a deviated septum, or dental infections are also more likely to experience a sinus infection. In many cases, these sufferers will develop chronic sinusitis, requiring treatment management strategies.
Apply Moisture And Heat
- Place a warm, moist washcloth over your face several times a day to soften mucus.
- Drink lots of fluids to keep your sinuses hydrated avoid alcohol and caffeine, which can have a drying effect.
- Inhale steam to moisten and soften mucus.
- Keep nasal passages moist with saline sprays that can also rinse out mucus.
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What Causes Sinus Pain
Sinuses become congested just like your nose does when reacting to allergens, irritants or respiratory infections. Tissues become swollen and produce extra mucus. If the cilia cant move the thick mucus out, it begins to accumulate. Trapped mucus provides a safe haven for germs or fungi to grow. Infection sets in, causing sinus pressure and pain.
Differences in air pressure can also cause sinus pain. When your sinuses are clogged, air cant pass in and out easily and any atmospheric changes in pressure whether from driving through the mountains or flying in a plane can create a painful pressure build-up.
Drinking Water Can Help Relieve Sinus Pain And Relieve Congestion
Del Signore says that staying hydrated keeps your sinuses moist and makes you feel better, while also reducing the thickness of sinus mucus, making it easier to drain.
Everyone feels guilty for not drinking enough water, he said, and advises people to drink 6 to 8 glasses of 8 ounces of water a day.
Avoid drinking too many caffeine or alcoholic beverages, which can lead to dehydration. thats the discussion about home medicine for sinus you can try.
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How Can You Prevent Sinusitis
There’s no sure-fire way of preventing sinusitis. But there are some things you can do to lower your risk:
- Use regular steroid sprays to prevent sinus inflammation. This is particularly important if you’ve had recurrent or chronic sinusitis.
- Avoid allergens and irritants, if you have allergies.
- Take your asthma medication as recommended. Keeping your asthma symptoms under control can reduce your risks of developing serious sinusitis.
Colloidal Silver For Sinus Infections
Colloidal silver is a safe and effective alternative medical treatment for sinus infections, with antiviral, anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. With nearly 32 million cases reported to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention annually, sinus infections can easily be considered one of the most common low-risk health conditions. However, just because the condition is low-risk in terms of associated health effects does not mean treatment isn’t warranted or necessary. Because of pressure, inflammation in the nasal cavity and congestion, a sinus infection can be extremely uncomfortable and even painful. Colloidal silver can help.
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When To See A Doctor About A Sinus Infection
On the other hand, a secondary acute bacterial infection may develop, so its advised that you see a doctor if your symptoms last more than 10 days or if your symptoms initially improve but then worsen again within the first 7 days.
See a doctor immediately if you experience:
- A persistent fever higher than 102 degrees F
- Changes in vision, including double vision
- Symptoms that are not relieved with over-the-counter medicines
- Multiple infections within the past year
- Sudden, severe pain in the face or head
- Swelling or redness around the eyes
- Stiff neck
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.
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How Compounded Sinus Therapy Can Help
Compounded solutions offer great benefit to patients. Unlike mass-formulated medications, your compounded prescriptions are tailored exactly to your needs. They can target your precise symptoms whether you need an antibiotic, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antihistamine, or all of these ingredients.
At The Compounding Center, we offer all of the most commonly prescribed medications for sinus infections, including tobramycin, budesonide and itraconazole. And, we can formulate the medication you require for the best administration method for you sinus irrigation or sinus nebulization. For your convenience, you can also purchase nebulizers directly from our pharmacy with your compounded medications. Saline is also provided with all compounded therapies. If you require customized sinus therapy, reach out to our sinus experts at The Compounding Center to get the relief you need.
Prevention Of Sinus Infection
A sinus infection is not exactly contagious. But depending on what caused a persons inflammation, other people may also develop the illness. For example, the common cold and flu are both contagious conditions that can lead to a sinus infection.
- Taking steps to reduce your risk of contracting viral infections can help to prevent sinus infections. These include: Practice good hygiene such as by washing your hands often and covering your mouth when you cough and sneeze
- Get the recommended vaccinations, such as the flu vaccine and pneumococcal vaccine
- Keep your distance from people who have upper respiratory infections
- Take steps to reduce your stress, which affects your immune system
- Keep your immune system healthy, such as by eating a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables .
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Sinus Irrigation Vs Sinus Nebulization: Whats The Difference
Sinus irrigation and sinus nebulization are each treatment methods your doctor may prescribe for sinusitis, or a sinus infection. Although they differ, the benefit of both methods is that medication is delivered directly to the sinuses, which means theres less potential for side effects from taking an oral antibiotic or steroid. This article will help you to understand the differences between these topical sinus treatments.
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.
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How Are Sinusitis And Asthma Treated
Treatment is important in preventing sinusitis from worsening. Again, since the conditions are linked, treating sinusitis may have the added benefit of improving your asthma symptoms.
If you have sinusitis and asthma, your health care provider might recommend that you use:
- Steroid nasal sprays to reduce the swelling easing the inflammation might allow the sinuses to drain normally.
- Decongestant or antihistamine medicines
Always ask your health care provider before using nasal spray . Overuse can lead to more congestion. You might try spraying warm salt water into the nose, or breathing in steam.
If a secondary bacterial infection has developed in your sinuses, you’ll need antibiotics. Your health care provider will probably prescribe them for about 10 to 14 days. Just remember that antibiotics will only work in cases of bacterial infection. They will not help with viruses. Also, you need to follow your health care provider’s instructions and take all your antibiotic medicine, even if you start feeling better after a few days.
For people with allergies, controlling exposure to allergens is key. Not only will it reduce your asthma symptoms, but it will also reduce your risk of sinus infections. Avoid any allergic triggers and irritants, like cigarette smoke. You can also ask your health care provider if allergy shots might be helpful.
Causes And Risk Factors Of Sinus Infection
The terms sinus infection and sinusitis are often used interchangeably, but sinusitis simply refers to the inflammation of the sinuses, with or without an infection. The medical term for sinusitis is rhinosinusitis because the illness affects the mucous membranes in both the sinuses and nose. Sinus infections ultimately develop because of sinus and nasal blockages that result in sinus inflammation. There are several underlying causes of sinus blockage, including various environmental, anatomical, and genetic factors. But the most common cause of the blockage is inflammation or swelling of the nasal passages because of the common cold or allergies. when a blockage occurs, mucus fails to drain properly, increases in thickness, and fills the sinus spaces. The cilia also slow down their sweeping and cleaning, making it even harder for mucus to drain. When the mucus is unable to drain, it becomes the perfect medium for microbes to grow out of control and cause an infection.
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Home Medicine For Sinus
Anthony Del Signore, MD, Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology at Mount Sinai in New York City, said that in many cases, sinus home remediesincluding the things your mother told you to docan effectively improve inflamed sinuses.
He explained that these treatments can soothe irritated channels and increase the flow of mucus, so you wont feel too clogged.
What Are Sinus Irrigation And Sinus Nebulization
Sinus irrigation, also called nasal irrigation, has been performed for centuries, but it is just now becoming common in western nations. Many allergists and otolaryngologists now recommend various forms of sinus irrigation for sinus complaints. At its most basic, nasal irrigation involves using a saline or salt water rinse to clear the sinuses of mucus, debris, and airborne pollutants. This is often done using a device called a neti pot to pour the solution into one nostril, then the other. You can also use a sinus irrigation bottle to administer the solution. Your doctor may prescribe a compounded medication that is added to the saline for sinus irrigation. In this way, you are both flushing out the sinuses and administering the medication directly where it is needed.
Sinus nebulization is similar to the treatments given by nebulizer for asthma or respiratory infections. The compounded medication is placed in the nebulizer cup with saline and the nebulizer converts the solution into a vapor that is inhaled nasally. The NasoNeb is the only FDA approved nasal nebulizer in the US. The NasoNeb breaks up the medication particles so they can travel up into the sinus cavities where bacteria and fungi are often deeply buried. Sinus nebulization is an appealing treatment option to avoid the use of long-term oral antibiotics and steroids.
When you might need them
- Acute sinusitis
- Prevention of future sinus problems
- Chronic sinusitis
- Post-operative sinus therapy
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Don’t Nebulize While You’re Sleeping
Would you prefer to have the nebulizer on while you’re sleeping, so you’re not even aware you’re doing it? That’s not right! Nebulizing while asleep has almost no effect whatsoever: it will be hard for the drug to get to where it needs to go if your mouth is closed and your breathing has slowed right down.
Don’t Sterilize The Ampoule Using Heat
After your nebulization session, don’t sterilize the ampoules using heat, as they’re made with polycarbonate or plastic. They’re materials that are sensitive to heat and you could damage them if you immerse them in boiling water. They would certainly be immaculately clean, but you would have to replace them.
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Whats The Main Difference Between Sinus Infection And Covid
The main difference between COVID and a sinus infection is what causes them. A sinus infection is caused by inflammation of the sinuses and often follows a cold or allergy flare-up. COVID-19 is only caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
The information in this article is current as of the date listed, which means newer information may be available when you read this. For the most recent updates on COVID-19, visit our coronavirus news page.
Allergy Asthma & Immunology Specialists Located In Scottsdale Az & Gilbert Az
Almost 29 million American adults have chronic sinus infections , and many others have short-term sinusitis. If you have sinus symptoms that seem to go on forever, you could have sinusitis that requires specialized treatment from the experts at Allergy, Asthma & Immunology Associates, LTD. There are two locations in Scottsdale and another in Gilbert, Arizona, so schedule an appointment online or over the phone today.
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Who Should Not Use An Albuterol Nebulizer
Albuterol may not be suitable for some people. Before using albuterol with a nebulizer, a person should make their doctor aware of any underlying health conditions to ensure this medication does not interact with them.
It is especially important to notify a doctor about:
- antidepressants such as monoamine oxidase inhibitors and tricyclics
It is also important that a person tell their doctor if they have recently stopped taking MAOIs or tricyclics in the past 2 weeks.
Using albuterol at the same time as these drugs may cause serious drug interactions.
People should not use the nebulizer a doctor has prescribed to inhale any other type of drug.
If a person takes any supplements, such as vitamins or herbal remedies, they should also discuss these with their doctor before trying albuterol.
In some cases, albuterol can cause side effects. The most common side effects are:
- an irregular or fast heartbeat
- chest pain
If these side effects occur and do not get better, or they become disruptive, talk with a doctor as soon as possible about ways to manage or avoid them.
Occasionally, albuterol may cause breathing difficulties to get worse. If this occurs, call 911 or visit an emergency room immediately.
A person should also get emergency help if they experience the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction after using albuterol:
- chest pain