You know the feeling when you wake up on a beautiful, crisp fall morning to…searing pain in your sinuses? It might be the change in the weather, or it might be sinusitis.
If you find yourself suffering from debilitating sinus issues on a regular basis, you might have chronic sinusitis. Not sure what that is? Read on to learn everything you need to know about chronic sinusitis!
What is Chronic Sinusitis?
Chronic sinusitis is the inflammation of your sinuses that lasts for a long period of time, usually for several months. The inflammation results in varying levels of pain in pressure within your sinus cavities. Unlike acute sinusitis, chronic sinusitis is not caused by bacteria or viruses.
Typical symptoms of chronic sinusitis include things like congestion, green or yellow mucus, sore throat, and fever. Acute sinusitis typically subsides within about 10 days, but if symptoms persist for a long period of time, then it is more likely to be diagnosed as chronic.
What Causes Chronic Sinusitis?
Chronic sinusitis is caused by a few things. Some people are predisposed to it because of damage to the nose or sinuses that prevent proper drainage. This includes nasal polyps or a deviated septum.
It can also be caused by severe infections that are resistant to antibiotics or by immune system issues that make it difficult for your body to fight infections. For example, people who have cystic fibrosis or HIV may be more likely to suffer from chronic sinusitis.
Finally, if you’re frequently exposed to allergens or irritants like secondhand smoke, air pollution, or dust, then you may be one of the many who suffer from chronic sinusitis.
How Do You Treat It?
If you have chronic sinusitis, you’re probably wondering what you can do to start feeling normal again. Start with simpler treatments like nasal irrigation to clear congestion and irritants from your nasal passageways.
If home remedies don’t work, your doctor may prescribe nasal corticosteroids to help reduce inflammation and allow your body to heal. Depending on the cause of the sinusitis, your doctor may also prescribe antibiotics.
Can You Prevent Chronic Sinusitis?
There’s no surefire way to prevent chronic sinusitis, but you can take steps to at least reduce the severity. Try using HEPA air filters in your home, and avoid going outside when allergen levels are high or the air quality is low. You can also use a neti pot on a regular basis, stay hydrated, and massage your sinuses to keep things moving.
If chronic sinusitis is causing you to miss significant amounts of work or school, there are surgical options available for you. The simplest option is a balloon sinuplasty that uses a small balloon to open up the sinus passages and help them to drain more effectively. This is a great option because it doesn’t involve any actual cutting or removal of bone or tissue.
Ready to Tackle Your Sinus Issues?
Chronic sinusitis is a painful condition that may seem like it’ll never end. Thankfully, there are several steps you can take to alleviate your symptoms without resorting to more invasive measures. But if you’ve tried everything and you’re still suffering, then there are surgical options for you that’ll get you back to normal.
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