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How to Tell a Cold From a Sinus Infection

How to Tell a Cold from a Sinus Infection. and how to prevent a cold from becoming a sinus infection. You are sneezing and hacking, your nose is red, congested and blocked, and you feel awful. You have a slight fever. Is it a common cold? Sure it is, but is it a sinus infection? If it is "just a cold" then it is due to a virus. This is called viral rhinosinusitis. ( rhino refers to the nose being involved). If we do a CT scan, we often find sinus cavity changes - thick mucus - in the maxillary and ethmoid sinuses. The sinus drainage passages may be blocked. Under normal conditions this mucus is drained from the sinuses by the action of cilia. These are the tiny oars that move mucus containing bacteria, dust, pollens, etc out of the sinuses and nose. With a "bad cold", the secretions may not be drained out fast enough or the drainage may be blocked. Therefore, steps to increase cilia movement, and remove blockage are indicated. If the mucus remains in the sinus cavity, then bacteria remain in place and can multiply. The rhinosinusitis is then converted to a sinusitis. Common bacteria that cause sinusitis are Hemophilus influenzae, Moraxcella cattarrhalis and Streptococcus pneumonia. They may be present in the nasopharynx and can be carried into the sinuses by heavy coughing and forceful nose blowing. The harder you blow the nose, the more bacteria are blown into the sinuses and ears. The more force you use to clear a blocked ear, the more bacteria you force into that ear. It is possible to take a CT scan in order to help differentiate a common cold from a sinus infection. But this is considered poor practice because the CT scan does not always give an accurate answer, and the cost is a factor. The findings are not as clear as for a broken bone. ( what if we took an X ray on everyone with a cold! Ugh!) Bacterial sinusitis is fairly clear cut: fever, facial pain, tenderness over the sinus and teeth, redness of the nasal membranes and purulent discharge. There can be cough , sneezing and fever. But common cold symptoms may overlap. The ENT doctor has the advantage of viewing the sinus openings with a telescope (called endoscopy) and can see individual sites of sinus drainage. When the discharge and symptoms are one sided and localized, that indicates sinusitis. You don't want to give antibiotics for a common cold. a. Since it is a virus, antibiotics won't cure the condition b. If you are not giving the right antibiotic and the right dose all you may be doing is developing antibiotic resistant strains. c. You build up unnecessary drug resistance this way d. Excess antibiotics are known to have serious side effects.


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6 Humidifiers and salt-water sprays. Dry-air heating systems and air-conditioning can cause sinus membranes to dry out, crack and become vulnerable to irritants, inflammation and infection. Keeping a humidifier running in your home and office or using an over-the-counter salt-water spray (inhaled through the nose) five or six times a day can provide dramatic relief.

4 Expectorants. Medicines, such as Guaifenesin, thin the mucus so it drains more easily. 5 Antihistamines. These medications help relieve nasal itchiness and inflammation by blocking the action of histamine, however, they do not help mucus drain. Antihistamines include chlorpheniramine, Hismanal, Seldane and Tavist.

Natural medicines for sinus head ache include: ??? Eating spicy foods like Cajun recipes ??? Cold towel compress in brow area or alternate with hot compress & hot footbath ??? Air moisturizers like steam vaporizers ??? the use of Europeans herbals like angelica, mint, magnolia flower, & chrysanthemum ??? Light head and neck exercises ??? the use of saline nasal spray to loosen mucous ??? Relaxation techniques and get enough rest or sleep ??? Acupressure techniques on the nostril sides ??? Aromatherapy or the use of essential oils. This procedure involves mixture of aromatic oil and carrier oils. These oils can be use as massage oils, bath oils or can be placed in cotton balls as inhalators. The following are list of essential oils: - Peppermint oil works best on sinus headaches. It is effectively used for chest and neck massage. It is refreshing and can be used at daytime. - Lavender oil - is the safest and gentlest oil. - Oregano oil is an anti fungal and anti bacterial oil used for sinus treatments.

Sinus headaches are often experienced by people who suffer sinusitis or inflamed sinus. It is prone to be experienced by people with: ?? Asthma or hay fever history

Doctors who treat children suffering from symptoms of sinusitis normally check, apart from sinuses, the nose, throat, and ears for infection. They tap or press lightly the patient's forehead and cheeks. They prescribe antibiotics for infections caused by bacteria. This medication normally takes effect within days after taking the dosage. But in cases of chronic sinusitis, patients need to take the dosage for a longer period of time to ensure total removal of bacteria. Decongestants or nasal sprays dry up blocked or runny nose.

Generally if the cold lasts more than a week, a sinus infection has taken place. Most rhinovirus colds last a week, and most gradually improve over the next 7 - 10 days. But, if after a week the symptoms haven't changed, or are worse, then it is probably a bacterial sinus infection that needs treatment. A sinus culture can be of real value, as drug resistant bacteria exist in localized areas. Doctors obtain information about resistant organisms in their areas and can give better treatment. A serious problem about antibiotics for suspected sinus infection is that some reports show little difference in outcome in acute cases between placebo and antibiotic!

?? Air moisturizers like steam vaporizers ?? Light head and neck exercises ?? Relaxation techniques and get enough rest or sleep ?? The use of saline nasal spray to loosen mucous

The classic symptoms of acute sinusitis usually follow a cold that does not improve, or one that worsens after 5 - 7 days of symptoms or any of the causes listed above. Symptoms include: bad breath (halitosis) or loss of smell, cough - often worse at night (this can be from sinus drainage or constant irritation in the throat from the drainage), fatigue and generally not feeling well, fever (full blown sinus infections are systemic -affect your whole body accounting for the fatigue and fever)), headache -- pressure-like pain, pain behind the eyes or on the head, toothache, facial tenderness, nasal congestion and discharge, sore throat and postnasal drip. Symptoms of chronic sinusitis are the same as the symptoms of acute sinusitis, but tend to be somewhat milder but last longer than eight weeks.

Symptoms of sinusitis include bad breath, mild fever, daytime cough, puffy eyes, and incessant nasal discharge. There are children who also show signs of crankiness, physical exhaustion, and pain in various parts of the head.

Many people nowadays are affected by sinus infections. There are so many people that suffer from sinus infections, that in some countries alone there are more than five hundred thousand surgeries that are performed every year to help you get rid of a sinus infection.

?? Chiropractic Well trained chiropractic alleviates pain to improve sinus drainage. There are no existing studies conducted however some people are already practicing it.

So, if you want to find out more about antibiotics for sinus infections or aven about sinus infection symptoms you should visit this link http://www.sinus-infection-guide.com

The medical term for a sinus infection is sinusitis. Sinus infection can be acute or chronic. What happens in cases of sinus infection is that the sinuses found in your nose get inflammed. These sinuses that are found in your nose are cavities which are hollow and can be found near your eyes. In most of the sinus infection cases, the main reasons are structural problems, allergies or infections. Sinus infections can also be triggered by a cold. The acute form of the sinus infection lasts less than a month. If you see that the symptoms for sinus infection continue after this period and that they even get worse, you might have another problem. Chronic sinus infection lasts about four months. One of the diseases that has been associated with a chronic sinus infection case is allergies. The inhalation of allergens, which in turn trigger an allergic reaction is also another reason for a chronic sinus infection. Furthermore, people that suffer from asthma are also more at risk of developing the chronic form of sinus infection than others. The weather can also affect many people that suffer from chronic sinus infection.

The following may increase your risk for developing sinusitis: air pollution, smoke, allergies, asthma, changes in the altitude, for example from flying or scuba diving, from dental work such as root canals or extractions, etc., a deviated nasal septum, a nasal bone spur, or nasal polyp, a foreign body in your nose, swimming or diving often, gastroesophageal reflux disease (called GERD or more commonly called acid reflux), having been hospitalized, especially if you're in the hospital because of a head injury or have had a nasogastric tube (intubation) placed into your nose (nasogastric tube), overuse of nasal decongestant sinus medicines and pregnancy.

- Oregano oil is an anti fungal and anti bacterial oil used for sinus treatments. - Eucalyptus oil is the most versatile oil and very effective for respiratory infection treatments.

Treatment of sinus infection Treatment of sinus infection involves natural remedies like hot water treatment which means hot water treatments refer to inhaling vapors of from hot water added with mint or lemon juice. Nasal irrigation mixture sea salt in hot water to desirable amount and put drops of water in one nostril and bring it out from the other. And one must be very careful in the diet one has as all this helps in getting rid of sinus. Steam inhalation, hot compression, nasal irrigation, warm soup, mixture of apple cider vinegar, honey and ginger, garlic etc all have curative properties. Most of these treatments of sinus infection such as home remedies must be started right at the onset of the ailment. Plenty of vitamin C for many months is said to keep the sinus infection at bay. Taking some vitamin A, weekly dose and vitamin E twice weekly may help too, helps control the mucous.

What seems like common cold the first time its symptoms appear may actually turn out to be a case of sinus attack. Just like when they contract the cold virus, children cough, sneeze or get red noses when sinusitis hits them. What makes sinus attacks different from the common cold is the length of time the affliction wears itself out. It takes victims - young and old - a longer time to recover from sinusitis than from common cold.

The best thing to do, is to prevent a cold from becoming a sinus infection. The key steps are: ??? Bed rest and lots of fluids ??? No nose blowing or if you must, very gentle and both sides open. ??? Hot tea, lemon and honey. Drink till the urine turns light. ??? A decongestant or nasal spray to open the swollen nasal passages after the first day. ??? Pulsatile irrigation to remove any mucus containing bacteria. ??? If the drainage is heavy colored, do pulsatile irrigation twice a day ??? Chicken soup to improve cilia movement ??? Pulsatile irrigation to improve cilia movement ??? A relaxed attitude

Why our bodies need to develop sinuses is not clear to many. However, scientific studies suggest that sinuses make us feel less burdened by the weight of our head due to the light air that fills them. Scientists say that if anything solid were to take the place of the air pockets, our heads will become much heavier. Sinuses are also believed to enhance the depth and tone of our voice. For example, our voices often sound differently when we are suffering from common cold or, worse, sinus attack.

?? Constant colds ?? Ear/ tooth/ tonsil infections ?? Facial injuries that affect sinuses like nose deformities ?? Alterations or changes in temperature like swimming or climbing in elevated altitudes

Sinuses cover themselves with moist and thin layers of tissue called mucous membrane. This membrane makes it possible to add moisture to the air that comes in through normal breathing. They likewise secrete a gooey liquid called mucus that fills parts of the nose, also known as snot. This liquid serves to collect dust and germs that fly in the air before they can go farther inside the body.

Prolonged conditions stretching up to two weeks mean that the cold virus infection has worsened to become a sinus infection. Acute sinusitis describes an infection that drags on for more than two weeks. Beyond this period--stretching beyond three months--the ailment is called chronic sinusitis. Due to their less developed immune systems, children are at greater risk of getting hit by sinus attacks than adults.

 
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Other symptoms of sinusitis can include fever, weakness, tiredness, a cough that may be more severe at night, and runny nose or nasal congestion. In addition, drainage of mucus from the sphenoids (or other sinuses) down the back of the throat (postnasal drip) can cause a sore throat and can irritate the membranes lining the larynx (upper windpipe). On rare occasions, acute sinusitis can result in brain infection and serious complications. If a bacterial infection is present, antibiotics, such as amoxicillin, erythromycin or sulfa drugs, are usually prescribed for about 10 days. Your doctor also may prescribe one or more of the following remedies (which can be useful in reducing inflammation in the sinuses and nose and speeding recovery):

If the patient is not sure whether he/she has a sinus headache, The best way is to consult a physician. The following procedures are performed: ?? Physical examination which includes checking on nasal discharge and congestion.

It is important for people to know the risk factors, diagnosis and natural treatments of sinus headaches. This will allow them to identify the best essential oils for sinus headache aromatherapy.

- Marjoram oil is helps alleviate sinus headaches. - Thyme oil is another essential oil used mostly in aromatherapy healing bath - Rosemary oil is another incensier and essential oil for sinus relief

?? Mind and Body Techniques This includes yoga, meditation and biofeedback exercises. Some of the popular techniques are the Pranayama and Yoga Asanas. This is a combination of the physical movements and breathing exercises of the Yoga practice.

?? Homeopathic remedies


The use of fast, easy and convenient ready made all natural tablets. Some popular products are sinus busters and boiron.

Alternative Therapy ?? Acupuncture This is part of traditional Chinese medicine. It involves inserting metal needles at the pain area thru hands or electric signals. This aims to stabilize serotonin and release endorphin. Some acupuncturists also perform moxibustion. This includes the use of burnt herb mugwort.

Recurring sinusitis accompanied by a bacterial infection usually requires one of the new, stronger antibiotics, such as Augmentin, Ceclor or Ceftin. These drugs may be given in larger doses for a longer period of time (up to four weeks) than required for a brief bout of sinusitis. The doctor may also recommend continued use of a prescription nasal inhaler for several months to keep the inflammation down and prevent a recurrence.

Murray Grossan, M.D. www.grossan.com Author: The Sinus Cure (Ballantine 2007)

1. Decongestants. These temporarily relieve symptoms and also help the healing process by draining the nose and sinuses.Decongestants like pseudoephedrine, phenylpherine and phenylpropanolamine constrict the blood vessels and shrink the sinus and nasal membranes, thus, reducing stuffiness in the sinuses and nasal passageways.

If anything good can be said about sinusitis, it is this: The infection is not contagious. Unless discomforts are such that they are keeping the infected child from moving about, he or she may continue going to school or mingling with friends without fear of contaminating anyone. What the child needs to avoid are allergies and environmental pollutants. This will at least reduce the risks of going down with the infection--again.

?? Mold, pollen, smoke, and dust mite allergies ?? A frail immune system or immunity problems ?? A state that affects the way mucus moves inside the upper respiratory system, like cystic fibrosis.

When the sinuses become inflamed, the sinuses become blocked with mucus and can get infected. About a quart of fluid has to move through the sinuses every day. Every year, more than 30 million adults and children get sinusitis. Sinusitis can be either acute (lasting from 2 - 8 weeks) or become chronic, with symptoms lasting much longer.

Sinusitis is an inflammation of the nasal sinuses. It is usually caused by infection (bacterial or viral), but can also be caused by allergic reactions or other responses to environmental agents.

The bones in our head and face have blank niches or spaces filled with air, called sinuses. Sinuses can be found at the back of the nasal cavity, on both sides of the nose, inside the forehead, behind both and in between eyes. Sinuses come in pairs; there are normally four pairs in each person. They start showing as early as the first few months of conception; they continue to develop until late adolescent age.

If you have any query related with sinusitis take online advice from doctors online at http://www.simplyanswer.com and ask the doctor, we will provide you medical consultation services within 24 hours.

- Tea tree oil is an antifungal, healing oil used for sinus relief. - Ginger oil is a mint oil. - Wintergreen oil has methyl salicylate great for massages.

Sinusitis often follows respiratory infections, such as colds, or follows allergic reactions to something. Many people never get sinusitis, but many others develop sinusitis often. Of the many people who are more likely to get sinusitis are people with cystic fibrosis and people whose immune systems are weakened by HIV or chemotherapy.

Symptoms may last for 3 months or more and include Chronic fatigue, Cough, Facial pain around the eyes or in the forehead or cheeks, Headache (in the front of the head or around the eyes), Nasal congestion, Nasal drainage (yellow, yellow-green, thick), Pain in the roof of the mouth or teeth etc. However, most patients with sinusitis have pain or tenderness in several locations, and symptoms usually do not clearly define which sinuses are inflamed.

Sinusitis is the inflammation of the sinuses that occurs with either a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection. The sinuses are air-filled spaces in the skull, located behind the forehead, nasal bones, cheeks, and eyes, that are lined with mucus membranes. Healthy sinuses are sterile and contain no bacteria, viruses, fungus or other organisms and are open, allowing the mucus to drain and the air to circulate in them.

?? Cold towel compress in forehead area or alternate with hot compress and hot footbath ?? Eating spicy foods like Cajun recipes ?? The use of Chinese herbals like Magnolia flower, angelica, mint and chrysanthemum

3 Prescription inhalers. Several types of prescription nasal inhalers can help reduce sinus inflammation (these are not decongestants and are not habit-forming). Prescription inhalers help heal sinus membranes after the bacteria have been eliminated. These drugs include Beconase, Nasalide and Vancenase (all cortisone derivatives) and Nasalcrom (a non-cortisone drug). When used as directed by a doctor, prescription inhalers can be taken safely for months.

Cystic fibrosis is one of any number of diseases that will prevent the cilia from working properly. Other lesser known diseases that put you at an increased risk for sinusitis include Kartagener syndrome and immotile cilia syndrome.

?? Nasal augmentation (nodules) - these are small grape-sized polyps found on top of the nose. This condition leads to a narrower nasal cavity thus forming mucous.

Vinay Gupta is an experienced writer who is writing for Ask the Doctor and Articles on Arhtritis, Asthma, Diabetes etc for the website http://www.simplyanswer.com since long time.

Ayurvedic, homeopathic medicines and Chinese herbal medicines have become very important in the treatment of sinus infection. Doctors prescribe decongestants, antibiotics and even analgesics to cure sinus. Some even go in for endoscopic surgery to get rid of the sinus infection. Yoga has also been seen to have a good relief in the treatment of sinus infection.

?? Acupressure techniques on the nostril sides ?? Aromatherapy or the use of essential oils. This procedure involves mixture of aromatic oil and carrier oils. These oils can be use as massage oils, bath oils or can be placed in cotton balls as inhalators. The following are list of essential oils:

Sinus headaches are usually experienced by people who undergo sinusitis or inflamed sinus. It's prone to be experienced by people with: ??? Nasal expansions (nodules) - these are tiny grape-sized cysts found on peak of the nose. This situation leads to a smaller nasal cavity thus forming mucous. ??? Mold, pollen, smoke, and dust mite allergies ??? Asthma or hay fever history ??? A state that affects the way mucus moves inside the upper respiratory system, like cystic fibrosis. ??? A frail immune system or immunity problems ??? Constant colds ??? Facial injuries that affect sinuses like nose deformities ??? Ear/ tooth/ tonsil infections ??? Alterations or changes in temperature like swimming or climbing in elevated altitudes If the patient is not sure whether he/she has a sinus headache, the best way is to consult a physician. The following procedures are performed: ??? X ray tests or transillumination thru nasal endoscopy (light shining in to the sinuses) ??? CT Scan ??? MRI ??? Physical examination which includes checking on nasal discharge and congestion. As it play sometimes a very important role in the end.

Mucus membranes surrounding the nasal area and grow tiny hairs or cilia. These hairs sway, in ways that facilitate mucus flow, in and out of the nose. The cilia are disabled and the back flow of the mucus gets disrupted when a person contracts the cold virus. This explains why persons with cold develop symptoms like runny nose and clogged nasal cavities. The infection causes the swelling of mucus lining within the nasal area. This prevents the tiny passages between the sinuses and nose from working properly, effectively trapping more mucus within the sinuses. The immobile mucus becomes a friendly host for the virus, fungi and bacteria to breed.



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Sinusitis is an inflammation of the sinuses which can cause you to feel some of the following: - nasal congestion - difficulty in breathing - swelling of the throat - runny nose - coughing - facial pressure/pain, particularly in the cheeks and areas of the teeth - headache - fever - fatigue People usually turn to medication when faced with a condition like sinusitis. And...


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Sinusitis can be infectious and non-infectious, but most of the time the infection is present. The sinus infections affect every year 37 million Americans. The treatment is based on antibiotic drugs to kill the bacterium that causes the infection of sinuses to occur but decongestants and oral or topic steroids can help too. Besides treatment, check-ups to see if the nasal membrane is...


The ethmoid sinus, is one of the paranasal (hollow space in the bones around the nose) sinuses, it is collectively called ethmoidal air cells. It is an air-space enclosed between the spongy ethmoid bone in the upper part of the nose between the eyes. The air cells are innervated by anterior and posterior ethmoidal nerves. It comprises of a number of thin-walled cavities located in the ethmoidal...


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