Sinusitis, or a sinus infection, can be very irritating to deal with. Nasal congestion, fever, headache and cough are common symptoms of sinusitis. Sinusitis is what happens whenever the sinuses in the nasal passage get blocked, or when bacteria enter the nasal passage. The sinus becomes swollen and is unable to perform its usual functions, leading to the symptoms mentioned earlier.
There are four sinuses in the skull; the frontal sinus, which can be found behind the forehead, the maxillary sinus, located behind the cheekbones, the sphenoid sinus, found behind the eyes, and the ethmoid sinus, which is located between the eyes. The main functions of the sinuses are reducing the burden of the skull, providing insulation for the skull, and providing resonance for the human voice. Each of these sinuses can get infected, causing pain to the person. Let us focus on what happens when the ethmoid sinus gets inflamed, leading to an ethmoid sinusitus infection.
An ethmoid sinusitis infection is also called an ethmoditis. It is the infection of a particular sinus; specifically the ethmoid sinus. The ethmoid sinuses are located in the skull, above the nose and between the eye sockets. Ethmoid sinuses are connected by ten bubbles lined with mucus membranes and cilia, which help filter the nasal passage air. They have passageways in each bubble for draining the nasal cavity. But, if bacteria enters the lining of the sinuses, inflammation will occur, causing blockage. The mucus will not be able to drain due to inflammation. Nasal polyps can also block the air passageways and prevent mucus drainage. The mucus will build up, leading to an ethmoid sinusitis infection. An infection of the ethmoid sinus can also lead to an infection to the other sinuses, so it is important to cure the sinus infection as quickly as possible to stop it from spreading.
Nearly thirty-seven million Americans suffer from a period of sinusitis each year. Children are more prone to getting sinusitis due to exposure to bacteria, allergies, and other children who have colds. Adults, on the other hand, can get infected due to prolonged exposure to secondhand smoke. Some cases of sinusitis can even develop into an ethmoid sinusitis infection. Common symptoms include pain on the sides of the nose, headaches on the temple, nasal congestion, breathing problems, and postnasal drip. If the pain in your head is worse when you are lying down compared to when you are standing up, it is likely that you are experiencing sinusitis. The sufferer may also experience sore throat and bad breath.
The symptoms of acute sinusitis can last up to ten days. If it is subacute or chronic sinusitis, the symptoms may last up to eight weeks. Consult a doctor should you find yourself suffering from an ethmoid sinusitis infection. Nasal sprays and decongestants such as Afrin, Forte and Naphcon are usually helpful to clear up the airways. To relieve any headache pain, put a warm compress on the area of the ethmoid sinus. To prevent the sinusitis from occurring regularly, wash your hands often and avoid people with colds. A yearly influenza vaccination will also reduce the chances of you catching the infection. With a proper diet, the right amount of sleep and plenty of water, you can keep your body healthy and your immune system strong.
Bacteria are the usual cause of an ethmoid sinusitis infection. Sinusitis usually begins when a person has a cold. 85% of people suffering from a cold will most likely have an inflamed sinus. Since an inflamed sinus is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, a cold may lead to an ethmoid sinusitis infection. If you also find yourself suffering from asthma or allergies, you may also be suffering from a side effect of sinusitis.
Smoke, pet dander and pollen can also inflame the sinus during the change of seasons, so take care to avoid them. Fungal infection, upper respiratory infection and viral infection can also lead to sinusitis, as the nasal cavities are all connected to the sinuses. If you find yourself always surrounded by smokers or in frequent contact with children who suffer from colds, you risk exposing yourself to factors that may lead to sinusitis. Additionally, do not share personal belongings with other people to lower chances of infection.
Should you find yourself suffering from sinusitis incessantly, you may have chronic sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis can constantly tire you out and may get worse if you suffer from asthma. Consult a doctor if you feel that you are suffering from a chronic ethmoid sinusitis infection. If you are experiencing bouts of ethmoid sinusitis that last for a short period, consider consulting an otorhinolaryngologist. They are experts in treating diseases related to nasal congestion and may be able to provide a better cure for you. An ethmoid sinusitis infection may also lead to an ear infection, causing dizziness to the patient.
An ethmoid sinusitis infection should be taken seriously, as the infection of the sinuses can cause blood clots on the sides of the face. Such an event may even lead to permanent blindness if the sinusitis causes an eye socket infection. Other complications that can be linked to an ethmoid sinusitis infection are meningitis, orbital cellulitis and orbital abscess. Fortunately, complications only arise in extremely rare cases.
To diagnose sinusitis, you may have to undergo several tests such as mucus culture, nasal endoscopy, allergy testing, X-ray, and a CT scan. A nasal endoscopy will allow the doctor to see the passageways of the nasal cavity and observe the obstructions in it. Acute sinusitis can be cured with an intake of antibiotics for one to two weeks. Drinking plenty of fluids will also reduce the secretions of the mucus lining. Chronic sinusitis requires a different prescription. Occasionally chronic sinusitis requires for surgery if antibiotics and other regular treatments do not alleviate the usual symptoms or remove the obstructions in the sinus. Full recovery from surgery will only take four to six weeks. After that, you will be free from chronic sinusitis.