Strategies for Sinusitis
it is not possible to prevent all sinus problems from occurring,
but there are several things you can do to reduce the occurrence
and severity of sinus problems. Preventative strategies are important
for those who are plagued with chronic and painful sinus problems
like sinusitis. Strategies can be taken to reduce exposure to sinusitis
triggers as well as find partial or full relief.
Allergy and Irritation Avoidance
As allergies can contribute to the development of sinus problems
or worsen symptoms, electrostatic filters on heating and air
conditioning units might be helpful as they can remove allergens
from the air. Avoiding cigarette smoke and other pollutants in
the air can also help someone that is prone to sinus problems,
particularly people with allergies as well. When a person comes
in contact with an allergen and develops sinus inflammation,
that person is more likely to have a strong reaction to all irritants,
making sinusitis more likely. Drinking alcohol also causes the
sinus membranes to swell, giving the same possible effect.
Those prone to sinusitis might also want to avoid swimming in
pools treated with chlorine if they notice that the chlorine is
irritating the lining of the nose and sinuses. Diving can be a
particular problem as divers often experience congestion with resulting
infection when water is forced into the sinuses from the nasal
passages, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious
If a person with sinus inflammation believes the inflammation
might be related to an allergen such as dust, mold, pollen, or
food, a consultation with a doctor is probably the first step.
The doctor can offer tests to find out the specific cause or causes
of the allergy and come up with remedies to reduce or limit allergy
symptoms. Once inflammation due to allergens is reduced or eliminated,
that sinusitis risk factor is also reduced or eliminated.
Caution to Travelers
For people who have acute or chronic sinusitis, flying may cause
a problem. During a flight air pressure in a plane is reduced.
Air that is trapped within the body usually expands as air pressure
is reduced, causing pressure on surrounding tissues. If this
pressure is in the sinuses, the result can be a sinus blockage,
just as air pressure in the ears can block Eustachian tubes.
Not only can blockage in the sinuses or ear tubes can cause discomfort
or pain for travelers during the take off and landing, but blockage
in the sinuses can also lead to the development of a sinus infection.
To avoid any difficulty, decongestant nose drops or inhalers
might need to be used before flight.
If you do end up getting a sinus infection, you may want to try
using a humidifier to help relieve some of the painful and irritating
symptoms. Many sinusitis sufferers find partial symptom relief
after they install humidifiers in their homes. A room that is
heated by a dry forced-air system may find particular sinusitis
relief after getting a humidifier.
Irrigation and Nasal Rinsing
Another sinus infection relief possibility is nasal irrigation
and nasal rinsing to clear out nasal passages and remove irritants.
When sinus membranes swell because of allergies, infection, or
irritants, mucus can accumulate in the sinuses. Flushing the
sinuses with water or saline can help to clean out the nose and
provide relief for sinus pressure. Sinus irrigation can also
help alleviate the discomfort caused by dried mucus in the nasal
While it is impossible to completely avoid getting an infection,
following some avoidance strategies can help reduce the amount
of infections that occur. If a sinus infection does occur some
of the above methods may help reduce some of the pain and irritation
associated with sinusitis symptoms. To treat a sinus infection,
medication prescribed by a doctor is usually necessary, but also
a discussion with your doctor about prevention and symptom treatment
to the Allergy, Sinusitis, and Asthma Ezine
to Sinusitis Reference Section
to Health Main Reference Category
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