Sinus Infection- What It Is and How It Is Cured
Do you have a cold for more than a week already? Does your face feel tender and does your head hurt? If you answered yes to both questions then there is a great possibility that what you are experiencing now is no longer a common cold but a sinus infection already. Its symptoms are the same with a cold but a sinus infection lasts longer, usually more than three months.
Usually, sinusitis antibiotics are given to patients suffering from this infection in order to cure it. But there are people to whom antibiotics do not work. Also, some people say that they experience some unwanted side effects while using such medications. There are also some people who are not allowed to take medications such as pregnant women. Because of all of these, the better option is to use some natural ways on how to cure a sinus infection. Read the rest of this article to know these natural ways and to gain some knowledge about your condition.
Sinus Infection- What Is It?
This is a condition wherein your paranasal sinuses become swollen and inflamed. Your paranasal sinuses are air-filled spaces surrounding your nasal cavity (maxillary sinuses), behind your ethmoids (sphenoid sinuses), between your eyes (ethmoid sinuses) and above your eyes (frontal sinuses).
These sinuses are normally filled with air. If these become filled with liquid, it will then be blocked. The liquid inside your sinuses will promote bacteria growth and cause an infection.
Annually, up to 12 million people in the U.S. go to a doctor because of a sinus infection but the total number of people affected by it every year is approximately 30 million.
Sinus infection can be classified as chronic or acute. Most people suffer from a chronic sinus infection. This lasts for more than three months and can be due to various diseases which symptom is the persistent inflammation of the sinuses. On the other hand, acute sinus infection usually follows an upper respiratory tract infection. This lasts less than two months.
Sinus Infection- What Causes It?
Anything that will interfere with the drainage of the mucus out of your nose and with the flow of air into your sinuses can cause a sinus infection. Some of the causes of a sinus infection are discussed below.
- A sinus infection is most commonly caused by a virus. Sometimes, it can also be due to bacteria like Moraxella catarrhalis, Haemophilus influenzae and Streptococcus pneumoniae. Fungi may also cause a sinus infection.
- Cigarette smoking is another cause of it. Smoking thickens your nasal tissues and makes the flow of mucus slower.
- Anatomical problems like enlarged turbinates or a deviated septum may also cause it. Other causes of it are pollutants, allergens, chemical irritants and pregnancy.
What Complications May Arise If It Is Left Untreated?
Because the sinuses are close to the brain, it is most possible that the brain will get infected if you do not treat a sinus infection. Complications like meningitis and brain abscess can occur.
Other complications like maxillary osteomyelitis, sinobronchitis and frontal bone osteomyelitis may also happen.
What Are The Common Symptoms?
Your doctor may ask you if you have the following symptoms in order to know if you have a sinus infection:
- Vibrating sensations in your head
- Heavy head
- Facial pain
- Thick and foul-smelling nasal discharge
- Post-nasal drip causing sore throat
- Nasal obstruction
- Fever (this may or may not occur)
How Can You Cure Your Sinus Infection?
You can cure your sinus infection without using any medications and you can do so by following these natural remedies on how to cure a sinus infection.
- Chewing 4 fresh cloves of garlic every day is one of the most effective ways on how to cure a sinus infection. Garlic is very good in fighting off infections. It will lessen the duration and severity of your sinus infection. If you dislike the taste of garlic then just add garlic to your dishes.
- The use of bitter orange essential oil is another way on how to cure a sinus infection. Just put two drops of it on a cotton swab then use it to coat the inside of your nasal passages. This will quickly get rid of the nasal discomfort that you are experiencing.
- Next way on how to cure a sinus infection is to use a nasal saline solution. You can make your own solution by simply adding half teaspoon baking soda and half teaspoon salt to one cup of warm water. Mix this thoroughly then instill 4 drops of it to each of your nostrils by using a dropper or a squeeze bottle. If there is any excess fluid, expel it gently.
- You can also use eucalyptus oil to cure your sinus infection. Just get a clean washcloth and wet it using warm water. Then, add at least two drops of diluted eucalyptus oil to it. Apply the washcloth to your upper cheekbones and hold it in place for up to 5 minutes.
- Drinking ginger tea is also a natural way on how to cure a sinus infection. If you don’t like it then you can just grate some ginger and get its juice. Mix this with honey then consume it. Do this every day.
- Last of the ways on how to cure a sinus infection is to eat foods rich in antioxidants like colorful fruits and dark green leafy vegetables. Some of these are broccoli, red grapes, berries, spinach and tomatoes. These foods will help enhance your immune system so that your body may be able to fight off the infection.
Those are just some of the things that will help you understand your condition. The ways on how to cure a sinus infection discussed above are safe and effective but while doing any of these, make sure that you decrease your intake of dairy products. These foods can further increase mucus production and worsen your condition. Bear these natural remedies in mind and you won’t have to use any medicines whenever you have a sinus infection.