What is a sinus infection?
A sinus infection, also known as sinusitis or rhinosinusitis, is a condition where the nasal passages become swollen and infected. The sinuses are hollow air spaces in the facial bones, near the nose. They produce mucus, which helps line the nose and prevent dust and other particles from entering the lungs. Rarely sinusitis can develop into serious medical complications, including meningitis and brain abscess. A patient may need medical intervention if sinusitis lasts longer than nine days and it is unresponsive to over-the-counter medications.
Symptoms of sinus infection
13 Common symptoms of sinus infection include:
What are the common home remedies to treat sinus infection?
The nine common home remedies to treat sinus infection include:
- At-home vaporizer or humidifier: It may help relieve sinus symptoms. Sometimes a hot shower may also relieve sinus symptoms.
- Use of lavender essential oil, peppermint essential oil, and eucalyptus oil while breathing steam may relieve nasal pressure.
- A warm compress over the nose and forehead helps relieve sinus pressure.
- Use a syringe or a neti pot to stream a solution of non-iodized salt, baking soda, and lukewarm distilled (or previously boiled) water through the nostrils to help keep nasal passages clean. Also, a patient may choose a product from a pharmacy that is already prepared and ready to mix from packets.
- Drink warm water to stay hydrated.
- Drinking warm ginger tea with turmeric may help relieve nasal congestion.
- Drinking warm water with apple cider vinegar may help in fighting a sinus infection. Apple cider vinegar has antibacterial and antifungal properties and is a good source of vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, calcium, and magnesium which aids in treating sinus infection. It works by loosening up the mucous and clearing nasal passages.
- Eat a balanced diet that also includes spices, and a diet rich in vitamin C and minerals help build immunity to fight infection.
- Sleep with the head elevated at night or keeping a humidifier running at home to avoid an arid environment may help relieve sinus pressure.
What are the common medications to treat sinus infection?
The primary six types of medications and surgery used for treating sinus infections include:
- Decongestants: They help in reducing swelling, pressure, and congestion of mucus in the nasal passages. Usually used as nasal sprays, such as Afrin Nasal Spray (which contains oxymetazoline) and oral pills like Sudafed. These medications should be taken as prescribed by the doctor and for a maximum of three days.
- Tylenol and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs: Over-the-counter pain relievers may help reduce symptoms associated with a sinus infection. It helps relieve pain, swelling, and fever. However, these should not be taken for longer periods.
- Antibiotics: Antibiotics are usually not necessary for sinus infections, but physicians may prescribe one if they suspect a bacterial infection is the cause of sinusitis. Generic antibiotics like amoxicillin or cefdinir can be used to stop the growth of or kill bacteria to resolve a sinus infection. Other popular antibiotics prescribed for sinus infections include Zithromax (azithromycin) or Augmentin. Common side effects of antibiotics include nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
- Steroids: Corticosteroids can improve sinus drainage by reducing inflammation of the sinuses. Doctors typically only prescribe steroids for severe sinus infections. The most common steroids used for sinus infection treatment are prednisone and Medrol (methylprednisolone). Prolonged use of steroids can cause disruptions in the body’s hormone levels, so they should only be taken as advised.
- Antihistamines: If sinus infections are caused by allergies, antihistamines can help clear up sinusitis by reducing or stopping an allergic reaction. Benadryl is a commonly used antihistamine that may relieve sinus infections. The main side effects of antihistamines include dizziness, dry mouth, and drowsiness.
- Surgery: Surgery may be recommended if there is any structural deformity noted, such as a deviated septum or nasal polyps.
Latest Health and Living News
Daily Health News
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top How to Get Rid of a Sinus Infection Related Articles
Can Hot Weather Cause Sinus Problems?Sinusitis is a condition where you experience irritation and swelling of your sinuses. Allergies and sinus problems are common during the warmer seasons.
What Causes Chronic Sinusitis?Chronic sinusitis occurs when the tissue lining the facial sinuses becomes inflamed for at least three months. Chronic sinusitis usually involves nasal airway swelling (rhinitis). The causes of chronic sinusitis include nasal polyps, deviated nasal septum, medical conditions, respiratory tract infections, and allergies.
How Can You Tell if You Have a Sinus Infection?Sinus infection is a common issue that affects many people. Learn the signs of sinus infection, what causes sinus infection, how doctors diagnose sinus infection, and what you can do to treat sinus infection.
How Do You Know if You Have a Sinus Infection (Sinusitis) or COVID-19 Coronavirus?Learn how the signs and symptoms of a sinus infection are different from those caused by COVID-19.
How to Get Rid of a Sinus Infection FastThe sinuses are air-filled cavities that surround the nose and drain into the nose. They are present in the forehead, the cheeks and near the eyes. Treatment for sinus infections includes over-the-counter pain relievers, decongestants, antibiotics, humidifiers, nasal irrigation, steam inhalation, rest, hydration and warm compresses.
Is a Sinus Infection Contagious?Sinus infection (sinusitis) is infection (viral, bacterial, or fungal) or inflammation of the sinuses. Symptoms of sinus infection are cough, bad breath, coughing up greenish-yellow sputum, sinus headache, and other symptoms of the common cold. Treatments of sinus infection are home remedies to soothe symptoms and antibiotics if the infection is bacterial or fungal.
Is It a Cold or a Sinus Infection?A sinus infection, also known as sinusitis or rhinosinusitis, is a condition in which the delicate membranes that line the sinuses may get swollen and become red. A cold or common cold is a viral infection. It affects the upper respiratory system, which includes the nose, mouth, throat, and lungs.
What Are the Best Natural Home Remedies for Sinus Infections (Sinusitis)?What is a sinus infection (sinusitis)? Learn whether you need antibiotics and what other treatments and home remedies can help to relieve your symptoms.
Sinus Infection Dos and Don'tsIs it OK to fly when you've got sinusitis? How about going to work? WebMD helps you decide what's right and wrong when you're all stuffed up.
Sinus Infection vs. AllergiesBoth sinus infections and allergies (allergic rhinitis) cause symptoms such as runny or stuffy nose and fatigue. Sinus infection (known as sinusitis) is inflammation of the sinuses, caused by infection from bacteria, viruses, and/or fungi (molds). Allergic rhinitis occurs when certain allergies cause nasal symptoms. When a person with allergies breathes in an allergen, such as pollen, dust, or animal dander, symptoms such as runny or stuffy nose, itching, sneezing, and fatigue occur.
Sinus Infection vs. ColdViruses cause the common cold and most sinus infections. Bacterial and fungal infections may also cause a sinus infection. Signs and symptoms of colds and sinus infections include nasal irritation or dryness, sore throat, stuffy nose, nasal discharge/congestion, sneezing, and cough. Additional symptoms of sinus infections include sinus pressure behind the cheeks or eyes, facial pain when pressure is applied, bad breath, and thick yellow or green mucus. Treatment focuses on symptom relief.
Sinuses PictureThe sinuses are an air-filled cavity in a dense portion of a skull bone. See a picture of the Sinuses and learn more about the health topic.
Sinus Infection (Sinusitis)Sinus infection (sinusitis) is caused by allergies, infection, and chemicals or other irritants of sinuses. Signs and symptoms include headache, fever, and facial tenderness, pressure, or pain. Treatments of sinus infections are generally with antibiotics and at times, home remedies.
Sinusitis SlideshowSinus infection (sinusitis) symptoms can include headaches, a sore throat, and toothaches. Antibiotics and home remedies can relieve sinus infection symptoms.
What Is the Fastest Way to Get Rid of a Sinus Infection?Learn what medical treatments can help ease your sinus infection symptoms and speed up your recovery.