Sinuses are cavities located within the bones that surround the nose. The sinuses are lined with a thin membrane that produces mucus, which is normally swept along by hair cells and drains through small openings into the nasal cavity. A sinus infection (also called sinusitis) starts when this drainage system becomes blocked, usually from swelling due to inflammation caused by an infection or allergy. Symptoms include headaches, facial pressure or pain, thick mucus, postnasal drip, loss of smell or taste, bad breath, fever, toothache, and clogging of the ears.
How to Prevent Sinusitis
There are many things you can do to reduce your chance of developing sinusitis or to relieve early symptoms. Here are some suggestions:
- Keep your nasal passages clear. Stir in ½ teaspoon of non-iodized salt and ½ teaspoon of baking soda into 2 cups of lukewarm distilled or previously boiled water. Use a small bulb syringe to irrigate nasal passages. During the day, use nasal saline spray to moisten nasal passages.
- Drink lots of water. Good hydration helps keep the mucus thin and loose. Have a bottle handy and drink water throughout the day.
- Inhale Steam. Linger in a hot shower and use a humidifier at home to help prevent nasal passages from drying out.
- Sleep with your head elevated. Mucus pools in your sinuses at night when your head is down. Try propping up your pillows or a wedge during sleep.
- Keep your surfaces clean. Make sure to use antibacterial wipes to wipe down your desk, phone, computer, door handles, and stair railings where germs tend to stick around.
- Wash your hands frequently. In addition to cleaning off your surfaces throughout the day, kill germs from different surfaces by washing your hands throughout the day with antibacterial soap and hot water. Wash your hands after using the restroom or handling a diaper, before and after handling prepared or raw foods and when you are exposed to people displaying flu-like symptoms.
Sinus Infection Treatment in Norwalk, CT
If you start to have symptoms such as headache, facial pressure, congestion and dark mucus, visit AFC Urgent Care Norwalk to see if you have a sinus infection. In some cases, antibiotics are needed. Our provider can talk to you about the best treatment for your illness. Our center is open 7 days a week, with extended hours to accommodate your busy work or school schedule. Most major insurances are accepted, and you can check-in online for shorter wait times and more convenient visits. For questions or more information, AFC Urgent Care Norwalk can be reached by calling 203-845-9100.