How to Handle Sinus Infections This Winter

It’s that time of year again! The winter isn’t just the season of the flu; it is also the time of year when sinus infections thrive. Acute sinusitis develops when viruses, bacteria, or fungi cause inflammation that leads to pressure in the cheeks, forehead, and eyes. Though unpleasant, sinus infections are easy enough to treat. It’s chronic sinusitis, the persistent inflammation of the sinuses, that needs more serious medical attention.  

Recognizing and Treating Acute Sinusitis

Acute sinusitis is a relatively common condition that causes the cavities around your sinuses, which are your nasal passages, to become inflamed and swollen. Mucus cannot drain normally and ends up building up to cause difficulty breathing, throbbing facial pain, and headaches. You are most likely to suffer from a sinus infection after you catch a cold. It can often resolve itself after about a week, and you can use techniques like saline nasal spray, decongestants, and ibuprofen to relieve your pain. If a bacterial infection forms and makes your sinus infection too painful, it’s time to see your doctor to be prescribed antibiotics.

Dealing With Chronic Sinusitis

Chronic sinusitis is marked by inflammation in the nasal passage for at least eight weeks despite medical treatment. The symptoms are very noticeable and include thick, yellow or green discharge, constant nasal congestion and difficulty breathing, diminished ability to smell and taste, and swelling around the eyes, cheeks, nose, and/or forehead. Since chronic sinusitis impacts such a large region of the head, many people also experience ear pain, jaw and tooth aches, sore throat, and coughing.

There are a number of treatments for chronic sinusitis, but many of them focus only on treating the symptoms rather than solving the root problem. Balloon sinuplasty is a breakthrough surgery that is so different from all previous procedures because it does not require cutting or removing bone and tissue to alleviate sinus blockages. Instead, a small, flexible balloon catheter is used to open blocked sinus passageways. This allows mucus to properly drain, which in turn eliminates the future infection and inflammation.

If you are currently dealing with a sinus infection or wondering if your infection could be chronic, it’s important to get a doctor’s opinion. The Clinicians Urgent Care is open seven days a week in Tampa, Florida to address your most pressing health care concerns. Just call (813) 701-3260 for more information. Don’t worry about making an appointment, either; Clinicians Urgent Care offers quick and attentive care without the lines.