Chronic sinusitis is a swelling of the lining of the sinuses. Sinuses are actually four paired spaces in the head which are interconnected by channels which are narrow. The sinuses’ function is to make mucus that is thin which helps in the drainage of the nose’s channel and keeps it clean and free of bacteria. But sometimes, the sinuses face blockage and are filled with fluid which can lead to the growth of bacteria and cause infection also called bacterial sinusitis or the nasal tissue also gets swollen with the sinus tissue also called rhinosinusitis.
What are the symptoms of Chronic Sinusitis?
The symptoms of this condition include:
- Inflammation of the nasal cavity
- Persistent discharge from the nose
- Excessive congestion and stuffy nose that leads to breathing issues
- Slight inflammation around the eyes, necks and forehead
- Distorted sense of taste and smell
The other symptoms include:
- The pain of the ear
- Pain in the head
- Pain in the teeth
- Pain in the throat
- Bad breath
- Excessive exhaustion
The signs and symptoms of chronic sinusitis stay for at least 12 weeks and acute sinusitis can occur in multiple types before it. You should book doctor appointment if you are experiencing any of these symptoms.
What are the causes of Chronic Sinusitis?
The causes of Chronic Sinusitis are:
- Polyps of the nasal, are the tissue growths that create a blockage in the passage of the nasal or sinuses
- In some cases, the wall between the passages of the nostrils may block the passages of the sinus also called deviated nasal septum.
- There are other medical conditions like HIV, cystic fibrosis or other autoimmune diseases that can lead to the blockage of the nasal.
- Infections of the respiratory tract most common being cold can cause thickening and swelling of the membranes of the sinus and stall the drainage of mucus. It can be caused by either bacteria or viruses.
- Several allergies can also lead to the inflammation of the nasal passage causing blockage to the sinuses.
How is Chronic Sinusitis Treated?
The treatment depends on the severity of the infection. A simple infection may be treated through the use of:
- Medicines for decongestion
- Allergy and cold medications
- Saline irrigation of the nasal
- Keep yourself hydrated as it is a viral infection and fluids will be of great help
If the symptoms do not improve within a week or 10 days, then the specialist may prescribe:
- A course of antibiotics
- Decongestants which is oral or topical
- The doctors may also prescribe intranasal steroid sprays but the same should not be used for more than five days as it only adds to the congestion.
If the sinusitis is aggressive and long term, then the treatment also has to focus on the underlying condition. It is usually treated with:
- Steroidal sprays that are intranasal
- Oral pills or antihistamine topical sprays
- To reduce inflammation and allergy even Leukotriene antagonists are used
- The nose can be rinsed with saline solutions or solutions containing certain other medications.
If all the treatments stated above do not work then a CT scan will be used to further understand the issue. If the results suggest a sinus that cannot be resolved by medications, then surgery will be the way to correct the problem of your sinuses. This mostly happens in the case of nasal polyps or infections caused by fungus.
Depending on the results, surgery may be needed to correct structural problems in your sinuses. This is most likely to happen if you have polyps and/or fungal infections.
How is Chronic Sinusitis Diagnosed?
To diagnose sinus you should consult an ent specialist, you can find one by just googling, for example, ent specialist in Dibrugarh will give you details of all doctors and their clinics in Dibrugarh.
The specialist may ask you questions about your symptoms to draw a detailed medical history and understand the causes. They will then proceed with a physical examination during which they will check the ears, nose and throat for any inflammation, deposits or blockage. An endoscope can also be used to look clearly inside the nose and in rare cases, a CT examination may also be ordered.
How can Chronic Sinusitis be Prevented?
There are certain home remedies that can be used to deal with infections of the sinus or certain symptoms that may be caused because of sinusitis. This will include rinsing the nose with saline water and using nose drops and medications as suggested by the specialist.
You should understand what triggers your infection like dust, pollen or smoke and avoid contact with sick people. Ensure that you wash your hand before touching your nose also to keep cold and flu away.