Sinus Trouble Causes

man blowing nose at desk

Chronic sinus trouble can negatively impact your life. If you deal with chronic sinus symptoms, it’s important to understand the causes and learn ways to prevent it.

Symptoms of Sinus Problems

Chronic sinusitis is an ongoing condition that occurs when you have inflammation in your sinuses for more than 12 weeks. This condition causes symptoms that mainly affect your nose and sinus cavities. Common symptoms of sinus trouble include:

  • Nasal discharge that’s discolored and thicker than usual
  • Discharge that runs down your throat
  • Nasal congestion
  • Soreness in areas around sinus cavities, such as your cheeks, eyes, and forehead
  • Difficulty smelling and tasting
  • Soreness in nearby areas, such as your upper jaw and ears
  • Sore throat
  • Cough

Causes of Sinus Problems

Chronic sinus problems occur when mucus accumulates due to blockages or other obstructions that affect your sinus cavities and nasal passages. When you have chronic sinus trouble, it might come from one of the following causes:

  • Deviated septum that occurs when the wall that separates your nostrils is crooked, leading to sinus obstruction
  • Hay fever and other allergies that cause inflammation in your nose
  • Colds and other respiratory infections from viruses, bacteria or fungi that make it difficult for mucus to drain
  • Nasal polyps or growths that create blockages in your sinuses
  • Gastroesophageal reflux or other underlying conditions that cause complications that affect your nasal passages and sinuses

Complications of Sinus Problems

Dealing with chronic sinus trouble can affect your everyday life. If you leave chronic sinus problems untreated, you’re at risk of developing certain complications. Some of these are serious and could even become life-threatening, such as meningitis. You may also develop vision problems if sinus infections reach your eye sockets or a loss of your sense of smell over time. Sinus infections can also lead to infections that affect your skin or bones.

Risk Factors of Sinus Trouble

You might have a higher risk of experiencing chronic sinus problems if you have one or more risk factors: asthma, nasal polyps, a deviated septum or allergies. Your risk of chronic sinus trouble might also increase if you’re exposed to cigarette smoke or other air pollutants on a regular basis.

Lifestyle Changes

There are several changes you can make to your lifestyle that reduce your risk of suffering from chronic sinusitis. These include the following:

  • Lower your risk of getting respiratory infections by washing your hands often and staying away from people who are sick as much as possible
  • Maintain enough moisture in your sinus cavities by using a humidifier in your home, especially if the air tends to be dry. Clean your humidifier regularly to prevent mold from growing in it.
  • Avoid allergens if possible or find other ways to manage allergies and asthma to help keep your nasal passages and sinuses clear and free of inflammation.
  • Stay away from cigarette smoke and other air pollutants as much as possible.
  • Drink plenty of water or other fluids that help make mucus thinner and clear out your sinuses.
  • Limit or avoid dehydrating fluids, such as those that contain caffeine.

If you have sinus problems and are seeing customized treatment, please contact ENT Centers of Excellence today to book an appointment.

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