It’s that time of year for allergies, but for some, they are starting earlier and seem to last longer. With bothersome symptoms like nasal drip, runny nose, and sinus pressure, your quality of life can be significantly impacted, especially if your symptoms are chronic. One symptom of allergies is chronic sinusitis, a condition that causes the nasal cavity to become infected and inflamed. But there is something you can do about it!
What is chronic sinusitis?
What you’re experiencing with your nose dripping is a result of what’s happening to your sinuses, the cavities in the bone of your skull one on each side of your nose and one on each side above your brows. These cavities collect fluid. When your sinuses are getting a lot of these fluids and the mucous thickens and clogs the openings of one or both of your sinuses, you experience pressure building in these areas of your face. Fluid start dripping from your nose, you get teary-eyed and you experience a headache.
That’s sinusitis, the inflammation of your sinus due to the abundance of fluid collecting in these sub-facial cavities. Ordinarily, people get sinusitis from bacterial infection along their nasal passage. But, what you’re experiencing is not bacterial. It’s an allergic reaction, a reaction because of allergens in the air like pollen, dust or mites. Though not bacterial in origin, chronic sinusitis can lead to bacterial growth in the sinuses.
Another cause of chronic sinusitis is a blockage. The blockage may come from the accumulation of mucus. More often than not, the nose suffers from physical injury such as a deviated septum. That’s the middle rigid part of your nose, suffering from an injury like a bump.
Symptoms of Chronic Sinusitis
One way to identify chronic sinusitis is if it passes ten days of consistent sinus inflammation which can last beyond 12 weeks. Other than the pressure and pain above your brows and by the sides of your nose which feels almost like a headache, you’ll have green or yellow mucus congesting your nose all day long. You’ll experience throat irritation, frequent sneezing, difficulty in sleeping and even fever.
What Can You Do?
Typically, chronic sinusitis is treated with antibiotics like amoxicillin requiring a prescription. You may also take steroid drugs called nasal corticosteroids suppressing the immune system, temporarily relieving inflammation reaction and providing some relief.
Another treatment option is through surgery with the purpose of clearing the saturated sinuses. The Balloon Sinusplasty procedure involves using the balloon dilation with your doctor at the doctor’s office.
There are more natural ways of clearing the sinuses without using antibiotics, steroids or surgery.
It’s called nasal irrigation, an off-the-shelf treatment using saline sprays, neti pots and similar methods that clear out the sinuses with water. The saline solution also controls bacterial infection along the nasal passage, eventually reducing irritation.
Let your doctor take a look at your chronic sinusitis. It helps to have someone with extensive experience in his specialization on the ear, nose, and throat to take a physical look at you and give you more personalized advice.
If you’re in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, come on over at the Alabama Ear, Nose & Throat Specialist, LLC at 302 Merchants Walk, Suite 100. Or, give us a call at 205-722-6822 to schedule an appointment. Let’s get you relief from your chronic sinusitis.