What Can I Do To Prevent Sinusitis In My Child
There are things that can help your child prevent sinusitis. They include:
Have your child use saline sprays, washes, or both. Use these often to keep the nose as moist as possible.
Use a humidifier in dry indoor environments.
Keep your child away from cigarette and cigar smoke.
Keep your child away from things that cause allergy symptoms.
Dont force water into the sinuses. For example, your child should not jump into water.
Limit time in chlorinated pools. The chlorine can irritate the nose and sinuses.
Practice good hand hygiene.
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How Is Sinusitis Treated
Your treatment will depend on the cause of your sinusitis. Most of the time, treatment includes medicines and taking care of yourself at home. Medicines that are used most often include:
- , such as Sudafed, that are taken as pills or liquids. These can reduce swelling and improve sinus drainage.
- Over-the-counter pain medicine, such acetaminophen or ibuprofen .
- Antibiotics, which kill bacteria. Antibiotics will only work if your sinusitis is caused by bacteria. Most of the time, sinusitis is caused by a virus.
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When Do You Really Need Antibiotics For That Sinus Infection
- By Monique Tello, MD, MPH, Contributor
It was February, and clinic was teeming with respiratory infections of all kinds: mostly the common cold, but also bronchitis, pneumonia, and sinus infections. The patients were coming in usually thinking that they needed antibiotics for their sinus infection, or another respiratory infection.The first patient on my schedule was a healthcare provider with sinus infection written down as her main issue.* Shed had about two weeks of nasal and sinus congestion which she blamed on a viral upper respiratory infection . Her two young kids had been sick with colds all winter, so she wasnt surprised to have these symptoms, along with endless postnasal drip and a cough.
Her congestion had improved a bit at one point, and she thought that she was finally getting better. But then, the day before her appointment, she awoke with throbbing pain between her eyes, completely blocked nasal passages, and, more concerning to her, green pus oozing from her left tear duct. She had body aches, chills, and extreme fatigue. Do I maybe need antibiotics? she asked.
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Do You Really Need Antibiotics For A Sinus Infection
Fall is finally around the corner, but the cooler weather comes at a cost: annoying allergies. Youre likely familiar with congestion, coughing and sinus pain, sinus infections are uncomfortable affairs. Many of our patients ask, Do you need antibiotics for a sinus infection? As tempting as it may be to rush to your doctor for some antibiotics, doing so might not effectively treat the real cause of your sinusitis.
If your sinus infections last longer than 2-3 weeks, or if you have several sinus infections per year, antibiotics are not the most effective and long-lasting treatment. To understand if you need antibiotics for a sinus infection, its first helpful to know what happens when you have a sinus infection.
What Is Sinus Infection And How Does One Get Infected
Sinus cavities are empty spaces in which the air flows it is located within the bones that surround our nose. When our nasal cavities become swollen, an infection may immediately follow, particularly because the sinuses were filled with germs and fluid that block the passages, which is the main reason for infection.
Depending on the type of infection your sinus has acquired, it could last longer than you wish it would. Acute sinusitis may last for about a couple of week even when you are self-medicating. Bacterial sinusitis, those which doctors usually recommend antibiotics to cure, occur if the symptoms last for over 14 days. Nevertheless, you may be surprised at how long chronic sinusitis could last it can constantly give you trouble up to 12 weeks, especially those that are associated with certain allergies. Sinus infection can affect anyone from all the age brackets.
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When Do I Need Antibiotics For Sinus Infection
- Oyewale Oyelami
Do I need antibiotics for sinus infection? Using antibiotics to treat a sinus infection depends on what caused the infection- a virus or a bacterium. Doctors wont prescribe an antibiotic if your sinus infection starts because of a virus. So lets dive into this a bit more.
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When Do I Really Need Antibiotics For A Sinus Infection
When do I really need antibiotics for a sinus infection? is a question many patients have when suffering from bothersome sinus and allergy problems. While sinus infections can be quite painful, antibiotics often do not help in treating the condition.
Sinus infections affect approximately 37 million people in the U.S. each year and can be caused by:
- Nasal polyps or deviated septum causing nasal obstruction
The majority of sinus infections are viral in nature, and antibiotics do not cure viral infections. Taking antibiotics for viral infections also will not:
- Keep you from being contagious to others
- Relieve symptoms or make you feel better
In order to distinguish a bacterial sinus infection from an infection caused by a virus or other contributing factor, your doctor will observe your symptoms and possibly conduct other tests, such as a CT scan or cultures.
Antibiotics are only effective on bacterial infections, and even in cases involving bacteria, the body can often cure itself of mild or moderate infections within a few days.
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Risk Of Unnecessary Antibiotics For Sinus Infections
Taking antibiotics when a bacterium doesnt cause your sinus infection wont help you feel better, prevent the spread of the illness, or cure it. Its possible that if you take antibiotics too often, you wont find success with them when you do need them.
If you do take antibiotics, follow your instructions to the letter. Even after you start feeling better, finish your antibiotic course. Youll want to ensure the medicine eliminates all the bacteria and you dont get sick again.
Precautions Of Amoxicillin For Sinusitis
It is a general precautionary measure that no medicine should be taken without proper consultation with the doctor.
A person can buy Amoxicillin 500 mg Tablet with only a valid prescription at the pharmacist or medical center.
Some of the things you should disclose to the doctor before taking this medicine are-
- Whether you are allergic to drugs such as clarithromycin, erythromycin, and telithromycin
- Whether you have any issues in the kidneys, muscles, liver or heart
- If you have a low level of potassium or magnesium
- Whether you suffer from nausea, diarrhea or excessive sweating after taking the medicine
- Whether you are pregnant or lactating
Some precautions for special conditions before taking Amoxicillin 500 mg Tablet-
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Pathogenesis Of Acute Sinusitis
Acute sinusitis usually follows an acute upper respiratory tract infection . As the viral infection spreads in the nasal mucosa, swelling and oedema of the mucosa results. As the mucosal surfaces of the ostiomeatal unit are in close proximity to one another , obstruction of the sinus ostia results. In addition, the viral infection may reduce normal cilial motility. This prevents normal muco-ciliary clearance resulting in an accumulation of mucus in the sinuses and the development of the symptoms of sinusitis. If this mucus becomes secondarily infected by bacteria, acute bacterial sinusitis develops.
How To Treat Sinus Infections Without Antibiotics
While sinus infections caused by viruses, allergies, or other non-bacterial factors may not require antibiotics, they still cause the same symptoms which make you feel sick.
Symptoms of a sinus infection include:
- Nasal congestion
- Pain or tenderness around the eyes, cheeks, or forehead
- Thick nasal or post-nasal drainage
Taking steps to alleviate your sinusitis symptoms is often the best treatment to lessen your discomfort.
Sinus infection treatment options include:
- Drink plenty of fluids
- Rest, especially the first few days, to help your body fight the infection
- Moisturize the air with a cool-mist vaporizer
- Elevate your head while sleeping to decrease post-nasal drip
- Take warm showers or baths, as steam can soothe your sore throat and loosen mucus
- Gargle with warm salt water for a sore throat
- Use saline nasal spray or nasal irrigation kit to alleviate congestion
- Use over-the-counter treatments, such as nasal drops and sprays or pseudoephedrine pills, as your doctor recommends them
What Not to Do for a Sinus Infection
You should always follow your doctors instructions when you are diagnosed with a sinus infection.
- Ask for antibiotics if your doctor feels they are unnecessary
- Take antibiotics that are prescribed for someone else
- Skip doses of your antibiotics or stop taking your antibiotics early when your doctor prescribes them
- Save antibiotics for the next time you get sick
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How Is Sinusitis Diagnosed In A Child
The healthcare provider will ask about your childs symptoms and health history. He or she will give your child a physical exam. Your child may also have tests, such as:
Sinus X-rays. An X-ray exam of the sinuses may help with the diagnosis.
CT scan of the sinuses. A CT scan shows detailed images of any part of the body. They are more detailed than X-rays.
Cultures from the sinuses. A swab of discharge from the nose may be taken. The sample is checked for bacteria or other germs.
What Tests Diagnose The Cause Of Sinus Infections And Sinusitis
Sinus infection is most often diagnosed based on the history and examination of a doctor. Because plain X-ray studies of the sinuses may be misleading and procedures such as CT and MRI scans, which are much more sensitive in their ability to diagnose a sinus infection, are so expensive and not available in most doctors’ offices, most sinus infections are initially diagnosed and treated based on clinical findings on examination. These physical findings may include
- redness and swelling of the nasal passages,
- purulent drainage from the nasal passages ,
- tenderness to percussion over the cheeks or forehead region of the sinuses, and
- swelling about the eyes and cheeks.
Occasionally, nasal secretions are examined for secreted cells that may help differentiate between infectious and allergic sinusitis. Infectious sinusitis may show specialized cells of infection while allergic sinusitis may show specialized white blood cells of allergy . Physicians prescribe antibiotics if a bacterial infection is suspected. Antibiotics are not effective against viral infections many physicians then treat the symptoms.
In addition, both rigid and flexible endoscopy has been used to obtain diagnostic material from sinuses. These procedures are usually done by an otolaryngologist under topical and local anesthesia. Occasionally, there may be a need to sedate the patient. Some investigators suggest that endoscopy specimens are comparable to those obtained by needle puncture.
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What Is Sinusitis In Children
Sinusitis is an infection of the sinuses. These infections often happen after a cold or with allergies. There are 3 types of sinusitis:
Short-term . Symptoms of this type of infection last less than 12 weeks and get better with the correct treatment.
Long-term . These symptoms last longer than 12 weeks.
Recurrent. This means the infection comes back again and again. It means 3 or more episodes of acute sinusitis in a year.
The sinuses are air-filled spaces near the nose. They are lined with mucous membranes. There are 4 different sinuses:
Ethmoid sinus. Located around the bridge of the nose. This sinus is present at birth, and continues to grow.
Maxillary sinus. Located around the cheeks. This sinus is also present at birth, and continues to grow.
Frontal sinus. Located in the area of the forehead. This sinus does not develop until around age 7.
Sphenoid sinus. Located deep behind the nose. This sinus does not develop until the teen years.
What Are Complications Of A Sinus Infection Or Sinusitis
While serious complications do not occur frequently, it is possible for a sinus infection to cause a direct extension of infection into the brain through a sinus wall, creating a life-threatening emergency .
In addition, other adjacent structures can become infected and develop problems, such as osteomyelitis of bones in the skull and infection around the eye . Rarely, these infections may cause death. The most susceptible individuals to complications are patients with suppressed immune systems, diabetes, and relatively rarely from multiple trauma injuries that may occur in natural disasters.
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Omicron Appears To Live More In The Upper Airway And Less In The Lungs Than Delta And Other Earlier Variants
Unlike delta, omicron is more likely to populate the upper respiratory system. This is a shift from earlier variants that replicated in the lower respiratory tract, in the lungs, Dr. Galiatsatos says.
This may be due to omicrons many mutations, he suggests. This variant has approximately 50 mutations, around 30 of which have been identified on the spike protein the part that attaches to human cells.
Omicrons prevalence in the upper airways may explain why it is more likely than earlier variants to cause a scratchy or sore throat. There were some upper respiratory symptoms in delta and the other earlier variants, but not like were seeing with omicron, Galiatsatos says.
The new location is part of what makes omicron so contagious, he adds. If the virus is hanging out in the upper respiratory system, its probably easier for infected people to breathe it out, and easier to spread from person to person, Galiatsatos says.
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Feel Better Sooner Without Antibiotics
Instead of taking antibiotics for sinusitis, Consumer Reports chief medical adviser, Marvin M. Lipman, M.D., recommends that you get plenty of rest, rinse your nose with a saltwater sinus rinse or spray, drink warm fluids, and inhale steam from a hot bath, shower, or kettle. For pain, he says, try an over-the-counter pain reliever such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen .
If needed, your doctor can prescribe a prescription corticosteroid spray, such as fluticasone or triamcinolone. A systematic review published in JAMA in 2015 found that after saline irrigation, the second-best treatment for chronic sinusitis was a topical corticosteroid spray for a few days.
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Just try it, once. I am sure you will use it again! The list of what they can help with is long, and its a fraction of the cost of a doctors visit or even retail care. Plus, they even do a follow-up to see how you are feeling.
Helping busy super-moms like Nicole is one of the reasons I love providing care online. Any chance I can get to help a mom who spends so much of her time caring for others is always rewarding.
Why You Dont Need Antibiotics For Sinus Infections
If youve been knocked out by a sinus infectionstuffiness, face pain or pressure, and nasal dischargeits likely your doctor will recommend you wait it out for a week or so before resorting to an antibiotic. Thats because U.S. health experts recently called for doctors to think twice before prescribing antibiotics for sinus infections and other respiratory infections.
Sinus infections, or sinusitis, usually stem from a viral infection, not a bacterial oneand antibiotics dont work against viruses. Even when bacteria does cause your sinusitis, it usually clears up on its own without drugs. In a study of 166 adults with acute sinusitis published in the Feb. 15, 2012 issue of JAMA, the journal of the American Medical Association,amoxicillin proved no better than a placebo at reducing symptoms after three days.
Not only will taking antibiotics not help you feel better, but also they come with some unpleasant side effects that might leave you feeling worse. Studies suggest that nearly 25 percent of people who take antibiotics experience side effects, such as a rash or, more commonly, diarrhea and stomach problems. The drugs also contribute to the spread of resistant superbugs, which sicken at least 2 million people in the U.S. every year.
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Antibiotics For Sinus Infection
If youve ever had a sinus infection, you know how uncomfortableand persistentthey can be.
Add in possible nasal discharge, headache, cough, fatigue, and fever, and no wonder you just want it to go away.
Although these infections dont require treatment, if youre uncomfortable, over-the-counter remedies such as decongestants and nasal saline irrigation, as well as lifestyle changes like increased fluid intake, may provide some symptom relief.
On the other hand, in most cases, antibiotics dont help treat a sinus infection and may cause more harm.
However, antibiotics can be appropriate for some sinus infections. It all comes down to whether a virus or bacteria is causing the infection.
To help clear up the confusion about antibiotics for sinus infections, in this article, Ill explain the differences between viral and bacterial sinus infections.
I will also discuss when to use antibiotics to treat a sinus infection and what types of sinus infections antibiotics treat.