Sinusitis symptoms and treatment

By May 17, 2017Blog
woman with sinusitis holding hands to head

Sinusitis happens when the tissue that lines your sinuses becomes inflamed for swells up.

Healthy sinuses are typically full of air, but if you have sinusitis they can become filled with fluid. When fluid builds, that’s when germs can form and cause an infection.

What causes sinusitis?

The following conditions or circumstances can contribute to your sinuses being blocked:

  • The common cold
  • Rhinitis from allergies, i.e. when the lining of your nose swells up
  • Nasal polyps – small growths on the inside of your nose
  • A deviated septum – when you nasal cavity shifts shape

What types of sinusitis are there?

There are four types of sinusitis:

  • Acute sinusitis – cold-like symptoms like runny, stuffy nose and pain in your face. It can last two to four weeks.
  • Subacute sinus inflammation – can last anywhere from four to 12 weeks.
  • Chronic inflammation – Your cold-like symptoms can last 12 weeks or longer.  
  • Recurrent sinusitis – happens several times a year, not just during allergy season.

Who gets sinusitis?

More people than you think suffer from sinusitis. In fact, researchers estimate that 35 millions people in the United States get sinusitis at least once a year. You’re more likely to contract sinusitis if you have the following:

  • Swelling in your nose because of a cold
  • Your drainage ducts are obstructed.
  • Polyps in your nose
  • Trouble with your immune system

In children, sinusitis comes from the following conditions:

  • Allergies
  • Sickness that’s contracted from other kids
  • Pacifiers
  • Drinking a baby bottle while lying on the back
  • Smoke

What are the symptoms of sinusitis?

If you’re suffering from sinusitis, you likely have the following symptoms:  

  • Stopped up or runny nose
  • No sense of smell
  • Cough or congestion
  • Pain or pressure in your face
  • Fever
  • Bad breath
  • Feeling tired
  • Oral pain

If you have a green or yellow discharge in your nose or your cough, you might have acute sinusitis.

What are the symptoms of chronic sinusitis?

If you suffer any of these symptoms for 12 weeks or longer, you might have chronic sinusitis:

  • Congestion in your face
  • Pus or discharge from your nose
  • Fever
  • Headaches
  • Pain in your teeth
  • Fatigue
  • Bad breath

What are the treatments for sinusitis?

Treating sinusitis is a little tricky sometimes, because an antibiotic won’t work if the sinusitis is caused by a viral infection. If a doctor runs a test and finds you have a bacterial infection, he or she will likely recommend an antibiotic that will help you recover fully.


If you don’t have an infection, the symptoms should clear up on their own within two-four weeks.


If you’re showing symptoms of acute sinusitis or chronic sinusitis, stop by an Urgent Care clinic or call your doctor today.