Sinus infection

Sinus Infection: Causes and Treatment

A sinus infection is an inflammation of the mucous membranes in the sinus that can be caused by bacteria, a virus, or allergies. Often called a sinus cold or sinusitis, a sinus infection can be acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term). Symptoms include facial pain or pressure, a stuffy nose, a runny nose, a green or yellow nasal discharge, a sore throat, and cough.

Causes of Sinus Infection

Sinus infections can be caused by either a virus or bacteria. Bacterial sinus infections tend to be more severe and last longer than viral sinus infections and usually need antibiotics. Common causes of bacterial sinus infections include streptococcus pneumoniae, and Haemophilus influenzae (H. influenzae).

Signs & Symptoms of Sinus Infections

  • Facial pain or pressure
  • Stuffy Nose
  • Runny Nose
  • Green or Yellow Nasal Discharge
  • Sore Throat
  • Cough
  • Postnasal Drip
  • Bad Breath or Halitosis

Treatments for Sinus Infections

The treatment for a sinus infection depends on the underlying cause. If the sinus infection is caused by a virus, decongestants and saline nasal sprays can provide relief. Antihistamines can also help reduce the symptoms associated with allergies. If the sinus infection is caused by bacteria, antibiotics can be prescribed to treat the infection.