Sinuses are cavities that wind around the eyes and connect to your nose. Normally, in the absence of an infection, sinuses are filled with air. But, when the lining of the sinuses becomes inflamed, it causes the sinuses to fill up with fluid, resulting in what we call sinusitis or sinus infection. The swollen linings prevent the proper drainage of fluid leading to pressure around the eyes and behind the ears. Sinus infections, although not life-threatening, can cause extreme discomfort and disrupt a person’s normal routine. Dr. Kia is a top sinus doctor and has been treating and helping patients deal with sinus infections for over ten years. He is based in Brentwood, Los Angeles, and you can visit him to improve your condition.
What Causes Sinusitis?
There are several factors that can bring about the onset of sinusitis.
- Nasal Polyps – Sinusitis can be caused by painless, non-cancerous tissue growths called polyps around the lining of the sinuses. These growths interfere with the process of fluid drainage and cause mucus to build up in the nasal cavities.
- Respiratory tract infections or RTIs – RTIs like tonsillitis, laryngitis, and pharyngitis can cause the mucous membranes to get inflamed. This causes sinus infections.
- Common cold – The common cold is one of the most common causes of sinusitis. A blocked nose along with inflamed linings and membranes together contribute to a lot of fluid build-up. This, in turn, causes sinus infections
- Nasal abnormalities – Some people suffer from a nasal abnormality called a deviated septum. A deviated septum means that the nasal bridge or the bone between the nostril has a slight displacement. This displacement, although very slight, interferes with the normal airflow through the nasal passages, and this can cause sinusitis.
- Smoking – Smoking aggravates the sinuses and leads to swollen and inflamed membranes. Even second-hand smoke from cigarettes can cause a sinus infection.
Symptoms of Sinusitis
- Sinus headaches – This is the most common symptom of a sinus infection. Patients complain of severe headaches and a feeling of pressure around the eyes, behind the ears, and the nose. Sinus headaches are the result of a fluid build-up in the nasal cavities.
- Tenderness – Another sign of sinusitis is a feeling of tenderness, especially near the cheeks. This is again due to the fluid build-up in the sinuses. In some cases, there might be facial swelling as well.
- A sore throat and cough – A sore throat and cough due to irritated nasal passages are also common symptoms of sinusitis.
- Nasal discharges – During a sinus infection, the nasal mucus changes from clear to cloudy as a result of the inflammation.
How to Diagnose Sinusitis
Most of the symptoms of a sinus infection mimic that of a common cold. It is extremely important to diagnose the symptoms correctly in order to start the correct treatment plan. Diagnosis will start with a list of your symptoms. Following this, your doctor will insert an instrument through your nose to check for signs of swelling, congestion, and infection. If the symptoms are unclear, any of the following methods will be used for confirming the diagnoses:
- Nasal Endoscopy
- CT Scans
Help With Sinusitis in Los Angeles
Correcting the nasal structure might provide permanent relief from sinus infections. At Allergy & Skin Spa, we offer effective treatments for addressing sinusitis. If you’re interested in improving your respiratory health, we welcome you to schedule an appointment by filling out the form below or giving us a call at (310) 312-1231.