Under Pressure? Sinus pressure, that is!
What are sinuses exactly? Glad you asked! Your sinuses consist of hollow cavities within your skull, and most of the sinus cavities are less than an inch wide. In your cheekbones are the maxillary sinuses while the frontal sinuses are the in the center of the forehead. Between the eyes are your ethmoid sinuses. The sphenoid sinuses are behind your nose.
Inside each sinus cavity is a thin layer of mucus, which helps lubricate your body- similar to what oil does for an engine. Congestion occurs when the sinuses near the nasal cavity become inflamed, or swollen. This could lead to a ‘stuffy nose’, blockage, pressure, and just an overall feeling of discomfort. Irritants such as pollen, pet dander, and dust can trigger the sinuses to respond with congestion while also causing itching and sneezing. Spring and summer are the worst seasons for allergy sufferers in Brevard County due to high pollen levels.
Almost everyone has experienced a sinus infection at some point in their lives and we can all agree that it is miserable! A sinus infection, acute Sinusitis in medical terms, occurs when bacteria or a virus enters and infects the nasal cavity. Some common symptoms include discolored nasal discharge, fever, postnasal drip, and congestion. Usually pressure and discomfort spread throughout the maxillary sinuses, ethmoid sinuses, and the frontal sinuses which can cause pressure or pain symptoms. Sinus infections commonly occur after a person has contracted a cold or similar illness.
If you suspect you have a sinus infection or have been struggling with any sinus symptoms, see your doctor. Your ENT doctor will most likely perform a physical examination which could consist of looking into the nose and checking for sinus pain. There are many treatments available. Your doctor may prescribe you a decongestant or recommend an over-the-counter medicine. Decongestants are medications that reduce swelling by causing the nasal tissue blood vessels to constrict, reducing your mucus production and sinus congestion. In the case of a sinus infection, antibiotics may be needed to treat the bacterial infection.
If you are experiencing prolonged or chronic sinus problems, or other conditions that affect your ears, nose, throat or related area, a referral to visit an ENT, Otolaryngologist or sinus specialist, such as Dr. James Go in Melbourne, Florida could be necessary. During an exam by an Otolaryngologist, the doctor may use a thin, long flexible endoscope with a small camera and light at one end that is inserted through the nose. Sometimes an Otolaryngologist will order a sinus CT scan to help diagnose and define the extent of the problem. Procedures such as Balloon Sinuplasty or Endoscopic Sinus Surgery are available.
This information and helpful facts on nose and sinus pressure and treatments are brought to you by Dr. James Go, ENT-Otorhinolarynologist. Dr. Go can be seen at his office located at 2290 West Eau Gallie Blvd., Suite 110, Melbourne, Florida 32935. Dr. Go (Otolaryngologist and Rhinologist or otorhinolaryngologist) can be reached at 321-421-7555.