Sinus infections are more irritating than they are harmful. It is possible to get acute sinus infections, but they can also be chronic and show up frequently throughout the year. If they go undiagnosed, it is possible you can have them for a few weeks. The physicians with AFC Urgent Care Malden can help you understand your symptoms and learn the best treatment options. For more information on the illnesses we treat, click here.
Symptoms of sinus infections
Sinus infections are typically caused by viruses, bacteria, or allergies. They happen when your sinuses become inflamed and fill with fluid. They can feel like persistent colds that will not go away, but a few key symptoms can differentiate a sinus infection from a typical cold. Signs you have a sinus infection include:
- Sinus pressure or headaches
- Facial tenderness or pressure near the nose when touched
- Post-nasal drip, which can cause a sore throat
- Cloudy or discolored nasal drip
Sinus infections alone are not necessarily contagious when caused by a virus, but the virus itself can be. If someone catches the same cold you have, they will not necessarily develop a sinus infection from it. Symptoms can typically last up to ten days, but when caused by bacteria, they can last longer. Regardless of how you got the sinus infection, the symptoms will be similar for both types.
At-home treatment options
There is a variety of OTC medication that can help alleviate your symptoms. Speak with one of our physicians if you are unsure about a specific medication and its effects. Saline nasal spray can help flush out the mucus and fluids in your sinuses. Do not use nasal sprays for more than three days, however, as this can end up making your symptoms worse. Always follow the instructions on the packaging. Medications such as ibuprofen or Tylenol can help reduce any pain or pressure and can reduce a fever if you have one.
Steam from a hot shower can also help relieve any pressure in your sinuses. Additionally, putting your head above a bowl of hot water with a towel can trap the steam and help you breathe easier. These techniques have helped some people in the past with sinus pressure during infections, colds, or the flu.
If you think you may have a sinus infection, visit AFC Urgent Care Malden today. You do not need an appointment, and we offer low wait times. Call today for more information at 781-322-7300.