What is Sinusitis?
Inflammation is a normal response of the immune system. Whether your body is responding to an injury, infection, or allergens, it begins to send additional white blood cells to combat what it senses is a threat. That increased circulation will often cause inflammation in the immediate area. Sinusitis is an inflammation of the sinus cavities. Sinusitis is common with allergies or viral or bacterial infections and is completely normal. Too much inflammation, though, can cause the sinuses to become clogged. This creates a moist environment where infection can grow. If your sinus pain and pressure doesn’t clear with your other cold symptoms or lasts for months, you really need to come in for an evaluation.
Symptoms of sinusitis or migraine headaches can be similar to sinus headaches, which can be confusing about what is causing your sinus pain or pressure. Not every headache is a result of sinus or nose problems. Many patients visit an ENT doctor thinking they have a sinus headache, then find out it is a migraine or tension headache.
Sinus headaches tend to worsen as you bend forward or lie down. The key to reducing symptoms is to reduce the sinus swelling and inflammation.
During your consultation Dr. Weiss will evaluate your severity of symptoms, go over your medical history, and do a physical exam. If you have repeated or chronic sinus pain or pressure Dr. Weiss may do a nasal endoscopy (to see inside your nose and sinuses) or do an in-office CT scan to determine if your symptoms are due to your sinuses.
Will My Sinus Infection Clear on Its Own?
If you have sinus pressure for more than a week, or have additional symptoms of infection such as fever or discolored mucus, you should make an appointment to see us in Corpus Christi. While many sinus infections clear up on their own, left untreated, they can also spread to the ear or throat. With a quick appointment we’ll be able to determine whether you need antibiotics.
Chronic Sinus Infections and Sinusitis
If you experience sinusitis and symptoms of sinus infections for 12 weeks or more, in spite of treatments, you may need additional treatment. Chronic sinus infections can be related to allergies, growths or obstructions in the sinus cavities or even persistent infections. The symptoms are very similar to acute sinus infections, but often don’t include a fever.
Chronic sinus infections can lead to permanent damage to your hearing and other health issues. Long term inflammation isn’t good for any part of your body, and your sinus ears are no exception. The longer your sinus infection goes on, the more at risk you become.
If you have persistent sinusitis or symptoms of sinus infections, call us. We can help.