Sinusitis is a common condition that occurs when the sinuses become infected and inflamed. Commonly referred to as a sinus infection, sinusitis often causes frequent runny noses and other problems that can be bothersome or even dangerous in severe cases. Sinusitis often develops as the result of allergies or bacterial or viral infections that affect the linings of the sinus cavities and cause excessive mucus to form. People who have deviated septums in their noses or unusually narrow nasal passages are often more prone to developing infections more frequently. Sinusitis can also be classified as acute, which means that it lasts up to four weeks, or chronic if it lingers for longer periods that may range from several months to more than a year.
Having this condition is not always obvious, and sinusitis can sometimes be mistaken for a common cold or another respiratory problem. Getting a diagnosis from a medical professional can help sufferers of sinusitis take the right action and get the best sinusitis treatments to try to recover faster.
The following symptoms are common among people who experience sinusitis:
A nose that runs more than usual is a classic sign of both acute and chronic sinusitis. Mucus that is yellow or green in color usually indicates that a sinus infection is present. The mucus can even appear brown in some cases of sinusitis when the condition results in a lot of sinus swelling that causes bleeding. The consistency of the mucus can be loose and liquidy or similar to the texture of peanut butter during a sinus infection.
Foul Taste in Mouth
Sinusitis often causes a persistent foul taste in the mouth that isn’t always relieved with eating or drinking or using mouthwash. Many sufferers of sinusitis report having a metallic taste in their mouths, according to Healthline.com. This unpleasant taste can also cause bad breath. Postnasal drip, which occurs sometimes from sinusitis when mucus starts draining into the throat, is often the culprit of this foul taste.
When the sinuses swell because of infection, the extra pressure can result in frequent sinus headaches. These headaches are sometimes duller in intensity and may linger longer, or they could feel more intense in some cases. Sinusitis treatments that are in pill or nasal spray form can often provide relief from headaches when sinus swelling has been alleviated.
Unusual Upset Stomachs
If stomach aches are felt even when no aggravating foods or beverages have been consumed, a sinus infection may be to blame. When sinusitis causes post nasal drip, the mucus that drains into the throat ends up in the stomach and can irritate the stomach and other parts of the digestive tract. In addition to stomachaches, the postnasal drip from sinusitis can cause more frequent bouts of diarrhea. Mucus may even be seen in bowel movements.
According to Healthfully.com, many people who have acute or chronic sinusitis report experiencing dizzy spells on a regular or semiregular basis. Sinus congestion and ear congestion from the infection can cause a person’s equilibrium to become off-balance and result in a condition known as vertigo. This dizzying sensation may also cause nausea or feelings of being disoriented more frequently.
Sinusitis can even cause toothaches. The pain is usually felt in the back upper row of teeth where tooth roots are located near the sinuses. Several teeth often feel pain or pressure in cases of sinusitis instead of just a single tooth. The pain can also extend to the cheeks and other parts of the face. Hot and cold foods normally don’t cause the pain to become worse when sinusitis is the cause since there are no problems with the actual teeth.
As WebMD explains, the sinuses and ears are connected, and ear discomfort is a common symptom of sinusitis. Pain or pressure inside the ears may be felt when the sinuses are congested. A muffled-like sensation that is similar to what is felt when flying in an airplane may also be experienced. The ability to hear clearly might also be impacted because of sinusitis.
Since the sinuses are located near the eyes, vision problems can occur when the mucus isn’t drained out of the sinuses because of an infection that causes sinus blockage. The eyes can become watery more often during a sinus infection, which can hamper vision. The extra pressure and sinus headaches can also lead to blurry vision.
The postnasal drip that often results from the condition can lead to developing a persistent cough when mucus gets into the lungs. Some of this mucus can come up through the throat and mouth when coughing. Mucus in the lungs from a sinus infection can also cause bronchitis in more severe cases.
These are just some of the most common symptoms that people with acute or chronic sinusitis are known to experience. However, not every person is the same, and some people may experience entirely different symptoms with a sinus infection that is outside the norm. If someone suspects that they have a sinus infection, it’s important to get the right type of sinusitis treatment to alleviate symptoms and resolve sinusitis sufficiently.