A sinus infection is a common health problem that happens when the tissue of the sinuses becomes inflamed. This inflamed tissue then leads to a buildup of mucus. The sinuses are part of the upper respiratory system, which are air-filled cavities in the bones of the face and neck. A sinus infection can also be caused by an allergy or changes in air pressure.
A sinus infection usually begins with a fever, which signals that the body is fighting an infection. When the fever is high, the sinuses may become inflamed. In addition to a fever, other common symptoms of a sinus infection include muscle aches and fatigue. Symptoms may also include a throbbing pain in the temples, neck, or face. In extreme cases, a sinus infection can even cause a severe headache.
In most cases, sinusitis can be diagnosed with a physical exam by a health care professional. During this visit, the health care provider will examine the inside of the nose and sinuses. They will also take the patient’s history, which will help the physician to determine the severity of the infection. Occasionally, the doctor may recommend an imaging test to identify abnormal structures, such as polyps, or mucus blockages. A CT scan or fiberoptic scope may be used to visualize the sinuses. Some patients may require surgery to clear the sinuses or repair a deviated septum.
In addition to antibiotics, antibacterial foods and beverages may help to alleviate symptoms. Garlic, ginger, and raw honey are all excellent sources of natural antibiotics. Additionally, you can use eucalyptus oil to clear sinus congestion. This essential oil contains cineole, a compound that helps people recover faster from acute sinusitis. The oil may also be applied to the face or inhaled through a vaporizer filled with boiling water.