Sinus / forehead cavity inflammation. The sinuses are hollow spaces behind the nose, in the upper jaw and in the forehead.
What is a sinus / forehead cavity infection?
The sinuses are hollow spaces behind the nose, in the upper jaw and in the forehead. There are four cavities in the head on both sides:
- forehead cavity
- sieve bone cavity
- wedge bone cavity
- jaw cavity
In children up to the age of eight, the sinuses are not yet fully developed so that inflammation is not common in them. The spaces are connected to the nose through small channels. The mucous membrane that covers the nose from the inside, runs through the connecting channels into the sinuses.
One speaks of sinusitis or sinusitis when the mucous membrane of one or more spaces is inflamed. Rarely the inflammation is limited to one cavity, usually several are affected. The secondary cavities that are most inflamed are the jaw cavities. Although the term forehead cavity inflammation is often used, the forehead cavities are usually not inflamed.
Both the doctor and the patient soon say that there is a sinusitis. However, research has shown that in most cases this is a severe cold or tension headache.
There are a number of simple methods to recover faster from a sinus or forehead cavity inflammation. Read the tips below.
Symptoms of a sinus / forehead cavity infection
Pain in the forehead, upper jaw or behind the eyes are the most important symptoms. There may also be a feeling of pressure or fullness in the head and the molars may be painful when chewing.
A cold has usually preceded it. Furthermore, you usually have a stuffy nose, sometimes with yellow-green, sometimes bloody mucus. This mucus can also end up in the back of the throat, causing coughing .
The pain is mainly present in the morning and worsens when bending over. Someone with a sinusitis can have a fever and feel very ill.
How does a sinus / forehead cavity develop?
Usually a sinusitis develops following a cold. The nasal mucosa is swollen due to the cold. The swelling continues in the drainage channels of the sinuses. As a result, the mucous membranes cannot lose their waste products. The resistance of the mucous membranes decreases, viruses and bacteria can strike and inflammation occurs. A bacteria is the cause in 75% of the cases.
Is it serious and what can you expect?
Sinusitis is a condition that passes automatically. Without treatment, the symptoms usually disappear within a week. After ten days, two-thirds of the patients recovered, after four weeks everyone.
If you suspect this condition, you do not have to go to the doctor. With the advice below you can handle the complaints yourself. If you are very ill or if the symptoms persist for longer than a week, consult your doctor.
When to the doctor?
In general, the symptoms of a sinusitis disappear within a week. If the symptoms persist for longer than a week, you can consult your doctor. Even when you feel very ill, it is wise.
The efficacy of antibiotics in sinusitis has not been sufficiently demonstrated. That is why the doctor will be reluctant with these means. Antibiotics can only be considered for serious complaints that last longer than a week.
Sometimes an allergy can cause symptoms that resemble sinusitis. Complaints that point in this direction are: sneezing, seasonal pain and lots of clear mucus. It is then good to consult with the doctor.
What can you do about it yourself?
Since almost every sinusitis follows a cold, the measures for both disorders are almost the same.
Drip The most important part of the treatment is to ensure that the waste products can escape from the inflamed sinus. You can achieve this by dripping the nose with salt water. As a result, the swelling of the mucous membrane in the nose and sinuses decreases so that the waste products can be removed.
Saltwater nose drops can be purchased ready-made at the drugstore or in the pharmacy. You can apply the solution to both nostrils three times a day (at least two drops at a time) with a pipette or syringe (for sale in the pharmacy). Bend your head back and drop the salty water into one nostril until you feel it open. Then do the same with the other nostril. Since this salty water is just as salty as body fluid, it can be used indefinitely.
Saltwater sprays are also available at drugstores and pharmacies. This can be a good alternative for children who find the dripping annoying.
Steaming A second treatment option for sinusitis is steaming. This measure makes the mucus in the nose and sinuses thin, making it easy to remove. You can steam by holding your face above a bowl of boiling water. You breathe in the moist air through your nose. The steam is concentrated on the face by placing a towel over the head and pan so that no steam can escape. Adding chamomile to the steam water can not be advised against harm, menthol, rhinocaps and the like. With sinusitis you steam twice a day for fifteen minutes.
Steaming in children is done in a different way. You ensure strong steam formation in the shower room. You can do this by pointing the hot jet of the shower at a cold wall. Then you let the child play in this room for fifteen minutes, or you can take a shower or bath with the child. Tobacco smoke stimulates the mucous membranes and works against the healing of sinusitis. So don’t smoke or as little as possible if you can’t resist it.
If you think it is necessary, you can take a painkiller. The symptoms do not heal, the pain is a few hours less bad. You can use paracetamol as a painkiller. Care should be taken with the use of nasal drops that do not consist of salt water (otrivin, xylometazole). Do not use them for more than one week at a time.
To prevent sinus infections, it may be better to collect through the nose than to blow the nose under pressure. Ensure a good overall condition.