Updated: December 19, 2017
Sinusitis, also known as rhinosinusitis is a sinus infection when your nasal cavities become infected, swollen and inflamed. Sinusitis is usually caused by a virus. But in some cases bacteria or rarely fungus may cause a sinus infection. Sometimes allergies, nasal polyps and tooth infections can also contribute to sinus pain and symptoms. Most of the time the pain and symptoms of sinusitis often persists even after other upper respiratory symptoms are gone.
Different sinus conditions include:
Viruses, bacteria or fungi infect the sinus cavity causing inflammation. The most common symptoms in this condition include more mucus, nasal congestion, discomfort in the cheeks, forehead or around the eyes and headaches.
An acute infection is usually part of a cold or other respiratory illness which only lasts for a short time, as less than four weeks.
Chronic sinusitis is a persistent process of inflammation of the sinuses. This condition last for more than twelve weeks or continue to recur.
If the septum that divides the nose is too far to one side, airflow can be blocked.
Hay fever or allergic rhinitis: Allergens like pollen, dust mites, and pet dander cause the defenses in the nose and sinuses to overreact resulting in mucus, nasal stuffiness, sneezing, and itching.
These are small growths in the nasal cavity. They can happen due to inflammation from asthma, chronic sinus infections and nasal allergies.
In this condition the ridges on the nasal septum are enlarged, which can block airflow.
The symptoms include:
The most common symptom of sinusitis is pain in your sinuses. You have several different sinuses above and below your eyes as well as behind your nose. When you have a sinus infection, any of these can hurt.
Inflammation and swelling in your sinus cavity causes your sinuses to ache with a dull pressure. You may feel pain in your forehead, on either side of your nose, in your upper jaws and teeth or between your eyes which may lead to a headache.
You may need to blow your nose often because of nasal discharge, when you have a sinus infection. This discharge comes from your infected sinuses and drains into your nasal passages which can be cloudy, green or yellow.
The discharge may also bypass your nose and drain down the back of your throat which is known as postnasal drip. it may cause you to cough at night when you are lying down to sleep, and in the morning after getting up. It may also cause your voice to sound hoarse. You may feel a tickle, an itch, or even a sore throat.
Your inflamed sinuses may also restrict the air that you breathe through your nose. The infection causes swelling in your sinuses and nasal passages. Your capability to smell or taste as normal will be reduced because of the nasal congestion. Your voice may sound stuffy.
The continuous pressure and swelling in your sinuses can give you symptoms of a headache. Sinus pain can also give you earaches, dental pain and pain in your jaws and cheeks.
Because fluids have been collecting all night long, sinus headaches are often at their worst in the morning. When the barometric pressure of your environment changes suddenly, your headache can also get worse.
When the discharge from your sinuses drains down the back of your throat over a long period of time it can cause throat irritation. This can lead to a persistent and annoying cough, which can be worse when lying down to sleep at night and in the morning after getting up. It can also make sleeping difficult. Sleeping upright or with your head elevated can help reduce the frequency and intensity of your coughing.
If you have any of these symptoms that lasts longer than ten days or keeps coming back, visit a doctor.