This time of year, it’s almost impossible to get through the day without coming across someone who is coughing, sneezing, or sniffling. You’re exposed to a lot of germs throughout each day and it’s probably no surprise when you end up catching something. Most colds and flus will resolve on their own with a few days’ rest and consuming plenty of liquids, but sometimes your symptoms get worse. A bad cold might actually be a sinus infection.
Symptoms of a Sinus Infection
It’s easy to confuse a bad cold and a sinus infection, because some of the symptoms, like headaches, or a stuffy or runny nose. But colds are viruses that you simply need to allow your body to ride out while sinus infections are the result of a bacterial infection and may require special treatment or medication. If your symptoms include severe sinus pressure, a stuffy nose that takes longer than a week to resolve, fever, or yellow mucus, it’s important to be seen by your ENT to determine a course of treatment that will help clear up the infection.
Treating a Sinus Infection
You can start by treating the sinus infection at home by using over-the-counter medications, increasing your fluid intake, and using a humidifier. While some sinus infections will resolve on their own with time, an antibiotic may be necessary. Sinus infections can be exacerbated in people who smoke, and people who suffer from allergies are more likely to experience recurring sinus infections. We recommend treating a sinus infection with sinus irrigation and encourage you to come meet with one of our ENTs to learn how to do this effectively. Sometimes, surgery is necessary for recurring and persistent sinus infections.
If you are suffering from congestion and sinus problems, the first step towards feeling better is to schedule an evaluation with an experienced ear, nose and throat doctor. Board certified physicians with New York ENT have extensive experience diagnosing and treating a wide variety of nasal conditions. Fill out the form on this page or call our office at 212-873-6036 to schedule an appointment today.