What is Sinusitis? Medically known as rhinosinusitis, a sinus infection in which the lining of the sinuses became inflamed and infected. The symptom can be acute or chronic, usually caused by allergies, nasal polyps, auto-immune reactions, or rarely a fungus. Although uncomfortable, it often goes away without medical intervention, however, if it lasts more than a week, you should consult your ENT doctor.
Chronic vs Acute
Acute Sinusitis – it’s the most common type of Sinusitis that starts suddenly with cold-like symptoms such as runny, stuffy nose, and facial pain. With this condition, you may experience difficulty in breathing through your nose and throbbing facial pain and headache. It usually lasts up to 4 weeks, but if it lasts longer despite your medication, it will be considered as chronic sinusitis.
Chronic Sinusitis – considered one of the most common chronic diseases and unlike acute sinusitis, it is not caused by bacteria and can’t be treated with medication, usually lasts longer than 12 weeks and can affect both adults and children. This affects the way mucus normally drains, which makes your nose stuffy and may feel swollen around your eyes. ENT doctors confirmed that this condition is an inflammatory disorder similar to asthma and allergies, treatment options include nasal corticosteroids, surgery, and nasal irrigation.
Pain in you Sinuses
Pain is a typical sinusitis symptom, you may feel pain in your forehead, on either side of your nose, in your upper jaws and teeth, or between your eyes that causes headache. In rare cases, if left untreated sinusitis may lead to meningitis, a brain abscess, or an infection of the bone.
You may need to blow your nose frequently when you have sinus infection due to yellowish-greenish nasal discharge which may have an odor. This discharge comes from your infected sinuses and drains into your nasal passages. Usually treated with antibiotics to treat the most common bacteria known to cause a sinus infection.
A feeling of nasal stuffiness caused by inflamed sinuses that may affect how well you can breathe through your nose. The infection causes swelling in both the sinus and the nasal passages, which implies that you will not be able to smell or taste properly.
Throat Irritation and Cough
As you’re going through your nasal discharge you may experience a persistent cough response to post nasal drip and body’s attempt to clear out throat tissue irritants. This may cause irritation, especially over a long period of time which may occur during the middle of the night while your sleep, making sleeping difficult.
Sore Throat and Hoarse Voice
Postnasal drip can leave you with a raw and aching throat due to the mucus overproduction from sinusitis that flows to your throat. This may start as an irritating tickle, but if the infection lasts for a few weeks or longer, it can irritate and inflame your throat as it drips, resulting in a sore throat and a hoarse voice.
When to see your ENT doctor for a sinus infection?
Many sinus infections can by your primary care physician or an Internal Medicine doctor. But if you a fever, nasal discharge, congestion, or facial pain that lasts longer than ten days or keeps coming back make sure to consult the best ENT specialist.