Everything You Need to Know About Chronic Sinusitis

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Chronic sinusitis is a condition that makes your nose and the inside of your cheeks become filled with mucus. It’s a very uncomfortable feeling and can leave you feeling blocked and exhausted for hours after you wake up. It can also make it challenging to breathe through your nose and smell, similar to acute sinusitis.

Sinus infections are common, especially in the United States, where many spend much of the winter indoors in air-conditioned buildings.

Constant exposure to indoor air pollutants and viruses, such as the common cold or cedar pollen, leads to more frequent sinus infection cases. If left untreated, chronic sinusitis may lead to permanent damage.

However, there are some methods you can try to reduce the frequency and severity of chronic sinusitis as well as how long it lasts.

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What causes chronic sinusitis?

The causes of chronic sinusitis vary, but some things may increase your risk factors. These include a cold or allergies, an injury to your nose, nasal polyps, and problems with the eustachian tube. Acute sinusitis has similar symptoms.

Many other health issues often accompany chronic sinusitis.

If you have a lot of mucus in your throat or nose and it’s bothering you, take action! Get treatment from a doctor as soon as possible before this becomes complicated, like chronic rhinosinusitis.

What are the symptoms of chronic sinusitis?

Some of the common symptoms of sinusitis are:

  • Frequent sinus headaches
  • Nosebleeds
  • Discomfort when sneezing or coughing
  • Chronic postnasal drip
  • Postnasal drainage that lasts for more than 3 weeks
  • Facial pressure and pain
  • Mucus buildup in the nose or cheeks

How is chronic sinusitis diagnosed?

The most common symptom of chronic sinusitis is persistent stuffiness. To determine if you have chronic sinusitis, your doctor will start by asking you questions about your medical history and symptoms.

They may also test for allergies and ask about your lifestyle.

Your doctor will then take an x-ray of your nose or perform a CT scan to see any structural changes in the areas where the mucus congestion occurs.

If they see any changes, they will refer you to a specialist to get the best treatment options possible for your condition, which may include sinus surgery.

How is chronic sinusitis treated?

If you have chronic sinusitis, there are some things that you can do to reduce its frequency and severity. In addition, some treatments can help you get rid of it entirely.

Some treatments include

-Nonprescription nasal saline sprays, like decongestants

-Antibiotics to kill the infection

-Steroid cream for inflammation

-Sinus surgery

-Rest and avoid stress for a few days

Some of these treatments may not be right for you. If that’s the case, talk to your doctor about what other options may be available.

They could also recommend making lifestyle changes like avoiding alcohol or smoking to feel better.

How do I prevent chronic sinusitis?

To prevent chronic sinusitis, start by ensuring you get enough sleep. Then, make sure you follow a daily routine so that when it is time to sleep, your mind and body are both ready.

Try to eat more fresh vegetables and fruit and less processed foods. Switch up your diet every few weeks so you don’t get stuck eating the same thing every day.

De-stress as much as possible to avoid overworking yourself or getting too stressed.

If it becomes clear that the symptoms you have are not going away, see a doctor to find out what might be causing them.

If necessary or the doctor thinks it is best for you, ask about alternative treatments such as herbal supplements or natural medicine. These tips also work in preventing acute sinusitis.

How to clear your sinuses if you suffer from chronic sinusitis?

If you are constantly congested, consider using a neti pot. A neti pot is typically a small container with a spout on one end and a bulbous spout on the other with a narrow neck in between.

The bulbous spout is filled with saline solution and water, which you inject into your nose by squeezing them gently together.

This will help loosen any congestion or secretions stopping you from breathing properly. Another option is to use humidifier therapy.

These devices create a fine mist of water vapor you can inhale through an elbow-shaped tube.

They can be used at night when you sleep to relieve congestion and during the day when you’re awake to reduce symptoms of sinusitis without having to use medications or drugs.

Another option is getting an upper airway rinse spray that creates an aerosol of saline solution mist over your nose and sinuses when combined with an oral rinse or device.

You can either purchase these sprays at the store or make your own using saline solution mixed with water and rubbing alcohol on cotton balls, which you can then insert into your nostrils for relief and prevention of chronic sinusitis.

What happens if chronic sinusitis goes untreated?

Chronic rhinosinusitis is an infection that can cause colds, allergies, and complications from the inflammation of your nose.

The long-term effects of chronic sinusitis may result in chronic rhinosinusitis, difficulty breathing through your nose, and hearing loss.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

No, sinusitis or chronic rhinosinusitis cannot turn into cancer. Chronic rhinosinusitis is a sinus condition that lasts for more than 12 weeks. Although it may cause complications, such as:

– Middle ear infection and chronic ear pain

-Vocal cord dysfunction and recurrent laryngitis

-A decreased sense of smell and olfactory atrophy (reduced sense of smell)

-Impaired nasal cavity healing

-Nasal septal deviation (nose turns slightly upwards)

-Damage to your salivary glands and increased incidence of dental cavities

Chronic sinusitis can make you tired because of nasal stuffiness, and it is uncomfortable to be like this. In addition, because it makes your nose discharge stuffy and infected, it can cause headaches and joint pain.

If you have chronic sinusitis, you should take meds to eliminate it or use some non-invasive treatment like:

  • A listening device
  • PPT appliance
  • Mind fogging therapy
  • Physiotherapy, surgery
  • Botox to decrease the irritants

You can also abrasion your nose by using a finger or with tissue at separate times of day to help eliminate the congestion.

Chronic sinusitis can cause brain fog because it can cause a loss of oxygen and nutrients to the brain. Even though you may be in pain, you may not be able to remember where you kept your keys or purse.

You may also need help with concentrating and remembering detailed information.

You may feel anxious or depressed more often and even experience seizures if the condition goes untreated. These symptoms are all a result of too few nutrients reaching the brain.

You may start to experience memory loss, which is similar to Alzheimer’s disease.

Chronic sinusitis is also likely to cause sleep problems unrelated to pain or fatigue. You can’t fall asleep or stay asleep, and you might even wake up during your night sleep, and you may be unable to sleep again.

You may also experience frequent awakenings due to nasal congestion that keeps your eyes open despite your desire to sleep.

The symptoms of chronic sinusitis, including brain fog, are very similar to chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). CFS is a condition that makes it difficult for you to function daily. Both diseases make it difficult for you to concentrate and remember detailed information.

The content on Doctor Alexa’s blog is reviewed by Advanced practice registered nurses or pharmacist and is intended for educational purposes only. This information should not be relied upon as professional medical counsel. Be sure to always consult with your physician about the dangers and benefits of any medication, treatment or procedure.

You shouldn’t wait to see the doctor for simple health needs.