Sinus infections occur due to fluid building up in the air-filled pockets in the face. This allows germs to grow. While viruses cause some, they can also be due to bacteria.
While the cause of a sinus infection can be many reasons, there are also different types of sinus infections as well. Do you wonder which you have and how serious it is? Read on to explore this guide on the different types of sinus infections today.
What Is a Sinus Infection?
This is where you have inflammation of the air cavities within your nose. This is a common condition that can impact you at various points in your life. Certain environmental conditions can bring it on, it’s best to avoid irritants.
Colds are different from sinusitis since they’re only caused by viruses. They’re often gone in about 7-10 days, while sinusitis can last for months. You’re also more likely to experience additional symptoms due to a sinus infection.
If you’re experiencing acute sinusitis you might wonder, Is balloon sinuplasty for me? Acute sinusitis is when you experience colored or cloudy drainage from your nose that lasts more than a month.
You’ll experience chronic sinusitis when your symptoms last for more than 3 months. This can be due to a bacterial infection. It can occur along with structural nasal problems or ongoing allergies.
This infected sinusitis can last up to 3 months. It can be due to seasonal allergies or bacterial infections.
Infected vs Non-infected
Non-infected sinusitis is due to allergic conditions or irritants in the air. The timeline is similar to chronic, subacute, and acute sinusitis.
Infected sinusitis is due to a viral infection. Bacterial growth can cause fungal or other sinus infections. Chronic and subacute infections are from the incomplete treatment of an acute sinus infection.
The Symptoms of Sinusitis
Symptoms might include a sore throat, fever, headache, facial tenderness, nasal stuffiness, etc. You might also experience postnasal or cloudy drainage.
If your sinus infection is bacterial then you might experience pus-like nasal discharge and facial pain. Your symptoms might not respond to over-the-counter nasal medications.
You can use different home remedies in order to prevent sinus infections from occurring. Speak with your doctor about different medications that you can try.
Rinse your nose out with saltwater in order to keep it clean. Your doctor might tell you to use steroid nasal sprays or allergy medications.
Avoid what you’re allergic to. This can include smoke, dust, pollen, etc. Avoid sick people in order to reduce your chances of becoming sick with the flu or cold.
When the drainage of mucous from your sinuses becomes impaired, it can lead to a sinus infection. This is also due to dehydration. Not having enough humidity in the air can cause sinusitis.
Irritants such as smoking can negatively impact the small cilia in your body. These are the small hair-like fibers that your epithelial cells have. Smoke can stop them from assisting the mucus in draining out your sinuses.
Stagnant mucus can lead to an environment for viruses and bacteria to grow. The microbes can lead to a sinus blockage. Most often it’s the ethmoid and maxillary sinuses that are affected.
When To See Your Doctor
Most sinus infections can be taken care of on their own. If your symptoms persist including an infection, you might want to see a specialist or your doctor. A CT scan could also show if something is wrong.
Tests To Diagnose a Sinus Infection
Your doctor can perform an examination and take a look at your medical history in order to diagnose you. This is due to MRI and CT scans being much more expensive and not readily available for many doctors.
Your doctor will take a look for drainage from the nasal passages. They’ll also look for any swelling or redness of the area.
You might also have swelling around your cheeks and eyes. Tenderness over the forehead or cheeks is a common symptom as well.
Since many sinus infections can be treated right from your home, your doctor might have you drink fluids and take decongestants. They’ll have you take a nasal saline irrigation and medication. The medication can include allergy or other over-the-counter options.
For long-term treatment, you’ll need to use a saline rinse and intranasal steroid sprays. Leukotriene antagonists might be another option. Oral pills or topical antihistamine sprays are another option.
If your sinus infection symptoms are due to a virus, then antibiotic treatment won’t work. This can instead lead to various side effects from the antibiotics. When you overuse antibiotics, you can build up a resistance to them where they take longer to work or won’t work at all.
Certain therapies such as facial massages, acupuncture, and acupressure might help reduce your symptoms. These can include the alleviation of pain or pressure. They normally don’t cause side effects and they’ll help you relax.
Exploring the Different Types of Sinus Infections
After exploring this guide, you should have a better idea of the different types of sinus infections. Make sure to speak with your doctor if your sinus infection symptoms seem like they’re not improving. Also, find out whether you’re experiencing a viral or bacterial cause.
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