Everything You Want to Know About Sinus Infection

Everything You Want to Know About Sinus Infection

Mar 01, 2022

One of the most common areas of infection for many people globally is the respiratory system. Many bacterial and viral diseases can affect your health. One of them is a sinus infection.

What Is a Sinus Infection?

It is the swelling of a tissue called sinuses, found in the nasal region, between the bones of the eyes. The medical term for a sinus infection is sinusitis. The function of the sinuses is to produce mucus, which keeps the nose moist from the inside. The role of a moist nose is to prevent irritants from getting through your respiratory system, including pollen, dust, and other allergens. Naturally, healthy sinuses should be filled with air. However, upon infection, the hollow space is filled with fluids that harbor germs and bacterial infections.

What Causes Sinus Infections?

In the USA alone, about 3.5 million people get sinus infections annually. It says a lot about informs how common the infection is. You need sinus infection treatment when your sinuses are blocked and inflamed. Various factors could lead to the inflammation and blockage of your sinuses, including:

  1. The common cold
  2. The flu (influenza)
  3. Nasal polyps – are small growths that grow in the inside lining of your nasal cavity.
  4. Allergic reactions – also called allergic rhinitis.
  5. A deviated septum – is a movement of the nose, usually due to nasal surgery or blunt trauma after an accident or injury.
  6. Using the pacifier – for infants and toddlers
  7. Drinking fluids from a bottle while lying down – common among children that do not breastfeed

Types of Sinus Infection

The kind of medical attention you receive in an ER for sinus infection will depend on the type of sinusitis you have. The types are:

  1. Acute sinusitis – usually starts suddenly and can last for about a month or two weeks. It starts with flu-like or cold symptoms like a stuffy or runny nose.
  2. Chronic sinusitis – the infection lasts for more than 12 weeks without getting better.
  3. Recurrent sinusitis – is a recurrent infection that goes and comes back several times a year.

Do You Have a Sinus Infection?

Even without seeking sinus infection emergency care, you can identify sinusitis through the following symptoms:

  1. Nasal blockage
  2. Facial pressure and pain
  3. Loss of smell
  4. Runny nose
  5. Congested chest
  6. Coughing
  7. Dental pain
  8. Fever and fatigue
  9. Discolored discharge or pus in the nasal cavity
  10. Headaches

Why Is It Important to Seek Treatment?

One of the reasons you need to rush to an ER near you when you have a sinus infection is that it may be mistaken for a different condition. In the COVID-19 pandemic era, our medical team at Express Emergency Room Harker Heights has encountered many patients with mixed-up self-diagnosis. The symptoms of sinus infections are closely similar to the flu, common cold, and other respiratory conditions. Other than that, you will need medical attention in an emergency room in Harker Heights for the following reasons:

  1. To alleviate pain and discomfort in your face
  2. To mitigate the spread of infection
  3. To promote breathability, especially at night when you sleep
  4. To restore your general health
  5. To prevent worsening of the condition

Managing and Treating Sinusitis

Depending on the level of severity, the following approaches can help manage and treat sinus infections:

  1. Hydrating – taking a lot of fluids will help thin out your mucus and improve your comfort. Besides, water is great for flushing out toxins from your system.
  2. Decongestant drops or sprays – will be helpful if you have a stuffy nose.
  3. Over-the-counter medication – to alleviate pain and rid your system of bacteria. Your doctor should prescribe antibiotics, which you will take for about two weeks until your symptoms disappear.
  4. Warm compresses – can help ease congestion and alleviate pain.
  5. Avoid allergens – including smoke, dust, pollen, to mention a few.
  6. Antihistamine – to manage allergic reactions.
  7. Hygiene – improving your hygiene standards can help you avoid several respiratory conditions. Wash your hands as often as possible, and avoid touching your face as much as possible.

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