Are you one of the 40 million people that suffer from sinusitis each year? Are recurrent infections causing you to miss time with your family, friends or work? Are you tired of chronic headaches, nasal congestion and postnasal drip? If you are, then keep reading to learn the steps to start feeling better!
The sinuses are hollow air spaces in the skull. Four types of sinuses exist:
- Maxillary (within the cheekbones)
- Ethmoid (between the eyes)
- Frontal (along the forehead), and
- Sphenoid (behind the eyes).
The sinuses are lined with a tissue called mucosa that produces a thin layer of mucus within the sinuses. Sinuses typically drain mucus into the nose through small channels. Sometimes, these channels get blocked and can cause sinusitis.
Sinusitis is an inflammation of the tissue lining the inside of the sinuses. This type of inflammation is typically caused by viral or bacterial infections. Seasonal allergies and anatomical obstructions such as a deviated septum or nasal polyps can also contribute to developing sinusitis.
Symptoms of Sinusitis
Symptoms of sinusitis can include:
- Post nasal drip
- Nasal congestion
- Discolored nasal secretions
- Facial pain/pressure
- Teeth pain or headaches
Sinusitis can be labeled as acute, lasting less than four weeks, or chronic which can last several weeks to months.
The “Sinusitis & Quality of Life Survey” showed that one-third of sinusitis sufferers are spending $250 – $1,000 a year for sinus treatments including over-the-counter medications, physician’s visits and prescription medications. In addition, sinusitis has caused one-third of sufferers to experience a significantly negative impact on work performance and has also caused work absences.
Sinusitis Treatment Options
Various treatment options are available to alleviate acute and chronic sinusitis. Some of these options include:
- Oral steroids
- Nasal steroid sprays, and
Your doctor may order a CT scan of the sinuses to further evaluate your symptoms. Depending on your response to medication as well as the CT scan findings, some patients benefit from outpatient endoscopic sinus surgery to alleviate the obstructions in your nose and sinuses which are causing recurrent or persistent infections. If you feel that you are suffering from recurrent sinus problems, the physicians at Berger Henry ENT Specialty Group are here to help!
MarketWatch Business Wire: New research demonstrates the effects of sinusitis on quality of life, (7/31/2014)
Medline Plus: Sinusitis, (8/13/2014)