Best In Class Treatment For Sinus Infections
If youre experiencing the symptoms of a sinus infection, the experienced ENT specialists at Chicago ENT can correctly diagnose your symptoms and help you breathe better.
Our team will work together to customize the ideal treatment plan for your needs. Schedule an appointment at Chicago ENT in Chicago, IL, and get the relief from chronic sinus infections you need!
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Loss Of Your Senses Of Smell And Taste
The nasal stuffiness and buildup of mucus that comes with sinusitis sometimes cause you to lose your senses of smell and taste. This can be either full or partial, and in most cases, it will disappear when your sinuses clear up. However, the symptoms shouldn’t last for longer than two weeks, and you should consider specialized treatment if you have trouble regaining either one of these senses.
What Is The Fastest Way To Get Rid Of Sinusitis
In many cases, the fastest way to get rid of sinusitis symptoms involves a combination of:
- Drinking plenty of fluids
- Applying hot towel on your face for 5-10 minutes at a time 4-5 times a day
- Inhaling steam by taking a hot shower or bath or filling a sink with hot water
- Using saline nasal drops, which can help loosen trapped mucus
- Taking over-the-counter medications such as nasal decongestants to help relieve pain and pressure in your head and face
With the above home remedies, you should start to feel better within 14 days. However, if your sinusitis is due to a bacterial or fungal infection, it may take longer to resolve without antibiotics or antifungal medications.
If you have persistent sinus issues, your doctor may recommend surgery to open blocked sinuses or create a wider sinus opening.
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Forehead Pain And Swelling
An infection of one or both frontal sinuses that spreads to the overlying bone can cause a lump-like swelling of the forehead and possibly the front of the scalp. The swelling is usually limited to one side. This uncommon complication of sinusitis, known as frontal bone osteomyelitis, is rare but serious. Usual accompanying symptoms include fever, pain and tenderness of the involved bone, and frontal headaches. Frontal bone osteomyelitis was previously known as Pott puffy tumor, a misnomer because the condition is caused by infection of the frontal bone rather than a tumor. This complication of infectious sinusitis can develop at any age but is more common in adolescents and young adults than it is in older adults.
- An infection of one or both frontal sinuses that spreads to the overlying bone can cause a lump-like swelling of the forehead and possibly the front of the scalp.
What Can I Expect If I Have Halitosis
Most people can get rid of chronic halitosis by treating the underlying condition. That could be as simple as improving your oral hygiene routine.
If chronic bad breath is due to an underlying health condition, then there may be some trial and error to figure out what works for you. Your healthcare provider may need to try different medications or change your dosages. Or they may ask to run more tests to determine the exact cause.
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Complications Of Chronic Sinusitis
Some people are troubled by frequent sinus infections, or continuous infection. Chronic sinusitis can linger for weeks or even months at a time. This can sometimes lead to serious complications, including infections in the bones and tissue near to the sinuses. Very rarely this infection can spread to the brain and the fluid around the brain. The person will be very ill and have swelling around the eyes.People with chronic sinusitis may have other problems which affect the nose, throat and ears at the same time, including:
- Middle ear infection and temporary deafness
- Post-nasal drip , which can lead to constant coughing, a sore throat and bad breath.
Treatment Solutions For Sinus Issues
Your personalized treatment plan will vary depending on the severity and length of your symptoms. The ideal situation is to identify a specific diagnosis first. Then we can put together a treatment plan to address your unique needs.
With a minor sinus infection, nasal saline washes and using a decongestant can be sufficient to relieve symptoms and clear the infection. But its not recommended to use over-the-counter decongestants for more than 3 days.
Sometimes, doctors prescribe antibiotics. But its important first to determine that the sinus infection is bacterial because antibiotics dont work for viral infections. If you are using antibiotics, its essential to finish the prescribed medication to the end of the prescription, even if your symptoms have improved.
Also, it can help to identify any triggers that might be affecting your sinus symptoms. For example, reducing exposure to allergy compounds or second-hand smoke can be effective in minimizing the symptoms that are occurring in your sinuses.
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Is There A Right Way To Blow Your Nose
If you have a stuffy nose, trying to force yourself to blow your nose could make it worse. The best thing to do is to blow one side of your nose at a time gently into a tissue. You might want to first use some type of nasal rinse to loosen any material in your nose before blowing. Make sure you dispose of the tissue and then clean your hands with soap and water or an antimicrobial sanitizer.
What Are The Signs Of A Sinus Infection
Everyones experience might be a bit different, but these are typically the symptoms accompanying sinus infections. Again, some individuals might encounter these symptoms for prolonged periods of time, while others experience them for a few weeks. The signs of a sinus infection vary, so dont use this to self-diagnose.
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What Conditions Lead To The Surgery Of The Sinuses
The body produces mucus which generally functions as a lube or a cleanser. Millions of minute hair-like cells in the sinus canals transport this mucus through the mucosal surface towards the entrance of each sinus. Inflammation causes this surface to sore and swell, preventing the mucus passage and leading to several infectious diseases. Allergies, irritants, fungus, and virus infections can promote the inflammatory reaction, which can obstruct the nasal passages. As a result, mucus gets accumulated in the sinuses, which become infected with germs and micro-organisms. Infections can persist and reoccur if pharmacological treatments fail to clear these sinuses, and in such a situation, sinus surgery is usually suggested.
Favorite Resources For Finding A Specialist
Through research, education, and advocacy, the American Rhinologic Society is devoted to serving patients with nose, sinus, and skull base disorders. Their website provides a valuable search tool to find a doctor, as well as links to other medical societies and resources that are useful for patients.
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Research And Statistics: Who Gets Sinus Infections
Each year, acute sinusitis affects about 31 million Americans, who spend a whopping $1 billion on over-the-counter medications and $150 million on prescription medications to treat the illness, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology.
Epidemiologic studies suggest 5 to 12 percent of people have chronic sinus infections. However, research published in December 2018 in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology suggests this may be an overestimation due to misdiagnosis. According to the study, which relied on imaging tests for diagnosis , about 3.0 to 6.4 percent of people may have chronic sinus infections. 32786-6/fulltext” rel=”nofollow”> 5)
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, or an allergist or immunologist.
- With some complex sinus infections, a surgeon who specializes in sinus surgery may be necessary to consult.
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How Do You Know If Your Sinus Infection Is Getting Better
Lets say you do have a fever and thick, yellowish mucus. Odds are its a sinus infection. But how do you know whether or not its a bacterial sinus infection?If youre on day 3 or 4 of an infection, it will be difficult to ascertain what kind of infection you have on your own.
However, if youre somewhere between day 7 and day 11, this is what you should be on the lookout for:
- Fever is completely gone or noticeably improving
- Your congestion and discharge is obviously lessening
- You dont feel as fatigued as you did a few days ago
The theme here is obvious improvement. If your situation is improving, then you probably have a viral sinus infection and do not need antibiotics. If your situation is not improving , schedule an appointment with your doctor.
Signs Of A Sinus Infection
- ENT Institute
Sinus infections: Theyre painful, annoying, and sometimes debilitating. Powering through work amid an infection is like attempting to stroll through molasses youd just have better luck giving up. The signs of a sinus infection are distinct, setting themselves apart from other nasal and sinus dilemmas.
But occasionally a sinus infection is mistaken for allergies or a viral infection. Without the proper information, its reasonable to assume that a simple sinus inflammation could be confused for a common cold or the more ominous COVID-19.
Having said that though, things like colds and allergies factor into sinus infections. If youve had one, more than likely, youve previously had a virus or an allergic reaction to something. Even after the symptoms of said cold and allergic reaction dissipate, a sinus infection still develops.
Before we start on the signs of a sinus infection, here are two types of sinus infections you should be mindful of. First, acute sinus infections are more common and less debilitating. Second, chronic sinusitis lasts much longer and occurs more frequently. If you experience the latter, its time to visit a specialist, like the ones at the Ear, Nose and Throat Institute.
Anyway, heres why you opened the blog in the first place.
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What Causes Sinus Infections And Sinusitis
Causes of Acute Sinus Infections
- Acute sinusitis usually follows a viral infection in the upper respiratory tract, but allergy-causing substances or pollutants may also trigger acute sinusitis. A Viral infection damages the cells of the sinus lining, leading to inflammation. The lining thickens, obstructing the nasal passage. This passage connects to the sinuses. The obstruction disrupts the process that removes bacteria normally present in the nasal passages, and the bacteria begin to multiply and invade the lining of the sinus. This causes the symptoms of sinus infection. Allergens and pollutants produce a similar effect.
- Bacteria that normally cause acute sinusitis are Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, and Moraxella catarrhalis. These microorganisms, along with Staphylococcus aureus and some anaerobes , are involved in chronic sinusitis.
Causes of Chronic Sinus Infections
- Chronic sinus infections are caused by viruses, bacteria, allergens, pollutants, and fungal infections, especially people with diseases that weaken the immune system, for example, HIV/AIDS, leukemia and other cancers, and diabetes.
- Medications that are designed to modify the immune system may increase the risk of developing sinus infections.
- Ongoing bad breath unrelated to dental problems
People who have facial pain, headaches, and fever may indicate a sinus infection.
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When A Sinus Infection May Be Dangerous
A sinus infection occurs when the tissue lining in your sinus cavity becomes swollen or inflamed. When your sinuses are blocked, they become a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses that can lead to an infection. Thats why its best to visit your doctor at the first signs of a sinus infection. Otherwise, it could lead to a chronic condition. Heres how to know if your sinus infection has developed into something more dangerous:
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When To Worry About Your Lingering Sinus Infection
Philip Scolaro, MD
Sinus infections have a way of making time stand still in a bad way. When youre constantly congested, battling headaches, and feeling sinus pressure, even a short duration of sickness can feel like its never going to end.
What if it doesnt? If your lingering sinus infection becomes chronic, it may be time for more aggressive treatment.
Heres what you need to know about sinus infections and when its time to take the next step in treatment.
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Runny Nose Along With Post
Individuals having sinus infections often need to blow their noses frequently due to their runny nose. Their nasal discharge or the mucus which is blown out may sometimes be yellowish or greenish. This nasal discharge comes out from the infected sinuses that drain down through the nasal passages. This process is known as post-nasal drainage or post-nasal drip. It causes a sense of pressure in the throat as well as in the mouth, thereby leading to a feeling of congestion. Sometimes, the mucus dripping down the nose walls may also go back to the throat, which leads to irritation and an itchy feeling in the throat.
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Whats The Best Technique For Flossing My Teeth
Cleaning between your teeth is just as important as brushing. Floss can clean places that your toothbrush cant reach. To floss properly:
- Break off about 18 inches of floss and wrap it around your middle fingers.
- Use your thumbs and forefingers to hold the floss tightly so theres an inch or two of it between your fingers.
- Guide that middle section between your teeth, wrap the floss around one tooth , and rub up and down the length of that tooth seven to 10 times.
- Now, wrap the floss around the neighboring tooth and repeat these steps.
If you havent been flossing, there might be some bleeding and discomfort for the first few days, but that should go away.
Surgical Treatment For Bacterial Sinusitis
Surgery is not usually needed for acute bacterial sinusitis. It is only necessary in some cases of chronic sinusitis that do not respond to other forms of treatment. Endoscopic treatment, where a small camera-equipped probe is used to guide and perform the procedure, is one option. In this surgery, the endoscope is used to widen the natural drainage pathways in the sinuses and nose, which improves mucus drainage and cuts down on congestion and the chance of infection.
Rarely, acute bacterial sinusitis may cause an abscess to form near the eye or the brain. In these cases, surgical treatment will be needed to drain the abscess.
Good to know: Complications from bacterial sinusitis are rare, affecting only about one in every ten thousand people with the disorder. However, they are more common among children than adults, so caregivers of children with suspected bacterial sinusitis should exercise caution and be alert for worsening symptoms, swelling or redness of any area of the childs face.
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What Is Sinus Infection
Sinuses are the empty chambers in the vertebrae that encircle the nose and link to it by minute, tiny pathways. Often known as sinusitis or rhinosinusitis, the symptoms damage both the nose and the sinuses. The sinus also affects around one in every eight persons every year. It is an infection or enlargement of the nasal membrane or the nasal wall. The inflammation caused by this infection begins when viruses or pathogens enter and grow in an individual’s sinuses, typically during a cold. As a part of the body’s natural response to inflammation, the nasal membrane or the sinus wall swells or enlarges, thereby obstructing the passages that discharge the sinuses. As a result, mucus and phlegm accumulate in the nasal and the sinus openings. For others, however, the symptoms and the inflammation may occur as a consequence of the nose and sinuses responding to various things in the environment and hence may not even be considered an infection.
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.
In healthy people, mucosal secretions are always moving and draining into the nasal cavity. But
when 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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What To Do When Initial Sinus Treatments Arent Working
In many situations, first-line sinus treatments will be sufficient in reducing your pain and minimizing symptoms. But if you dont experience results, your doctor might recommend other treatment options.
For example, you might need to use an antifungal medication if a fungus is the root cause of your infection. Or, prescription steroids can be helpful when used for a short time to reduce inflammation in the sinus area.
How Can I Prevent Sinusitis
Some of the home remedies used to treat sinus infections symptoms may help prevent sinusitis. These include rinsing your nose out with salt water and using medications that your provider might suggest, such as allergy medications or steroid nasal sprays.
You should avoid things you are allergic to, like dust, pollen or smoke, and try to avoid sick people. Wash your hands to reduce your chance of getting a cold or flu.
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