Anyone who has had a sinus infection or sinusitis can attest to how much of a pain it is to deal with. Besides having to endure a runny or clogged nose, the constant headaches and coughs can really take a toll on anyone. Sinusitis can last for more than two weeks, and many patients have asked me if there’s a way to get better faster. We from Entspecialistsingapore.com always tell them that a consultation with a sinus specialist here in Singapore is the best course of action whenever symptoms of sinusitis are being observed and last for more than a week.
What is sinusitis?
Sinusitis is the swelling or inflammation of the tissue linings on the sinuses. When your sinuses get blocked or are filled with fluid, bacteria and viruses may spread and cause an infection. Having cold, allergic rhinitis, or nasal polyps can increase the chances of sinus blockage, which can then lead to sinusitis.
Acute vs. Chronic Sinusitis
There are two main types of sinusitis, acute sinusitis and chronic sinusitis.
Acute sinusitis lasts for only a short time, usually less than a month. It usually accompanies the common cold and other respiratory illnesses.
Chronic sinusitis, on the other hand, can last for more than 3 months and may recur. If there are facial pain, congestion and some nasal discharge, then it is more likely a chronic sinus infection.
In both types, it is important that a patient go see a sinus specialist in Singapore immediately to get the right diagnosis and treatment.
What are the symptoms of sinusitis? And when should you see a sinus specialist?
The symptoms of both acute and chronic sinusitis include:
- Nasal congestion
- Nasal discharge
- Pain in the facial muscles
- Runny nose
- Loss of sense of smell
- Cough and throat irritation
- Sinus headaches
- Sore throat
- Bad breath
- Dental or gum pain
If you experience many of these symptoms, especially fever, nasal discharge, congestion or facial pain that’s lasted for more than a week, then it is best to consult as soon as possible with a sinus specialist in Singapore.
How do sinus specialists treat sinusitis?
The sinus specialist will first diagnose your condition, whether it’s of the acute or chronic type of sinusitis or some other sinus affliction. If it is determined to be sinusitis, then the corresponding treatments are often to help treat the different symptoms that you exhibit.
There are plenty of over-the-counter medications that can help treat sinusitis symptoms in the short run. A nasal decongestant spray is particularly effective at this; however, you should only use it for a maximum of three days. Continued use can be detrimental, as there are cases where the decongestant starts to make the congestion worse.
Steroid nasal sprays, such as fluticasone, mometasone or triamcinolone can also help deal with nasal congestion but without the risk of worsening the congestion. Antihistamines and other decongestants are available as well over the counter and are particularly effective in dealing with sinus infections caused by allergies.
Nasal irrigation is the process of washing the nasal cavity to flush out the mucus and debris from the nose and sinuses. A Neti pot or some other sinus rinsing system is used alongside a solution of water, salt and baking soda to perform nasal irrigation. It has been found that this practice is safe and particularly effective in dealing with common sinus problems, not just sinusitis.
Antibiotics are the last line of treatment for sinusitis and are not recommended unless all other treatments have failed. It is important that you consult with your doctor first before trying out any form of medication. Some side effects are also observed when taking antibiotics for sinusitis. These side effects include rashes, stomach issues and diarrhoea. Finally, antibiotics are the last line of defence, as stronger and stronger antibiotics create stronger bacteria as well.
Can sinusitis be prevented?
As always, prevention is better than cure, which is why avoiding certain things that can irritate your nose and sinuses can help prevent the development of a sinus infection. Cigarette smoke is one common culprit when it comes to a variety of diseases, including sinus infections.
Frequent washing of your hands also helps in keeping viruses and bacteria from entering the sinuses.
How long does sinusitis last?
Chronic sinusitis lasts for a long time – up to four or more months. Acute sinusitis, on the other hand, should last for at most a week as long as you follow proper treatment advice.
How to choose a sinus specialist in Singapore?
The process of choosing a sinus specialist in Singapore is similar to the process of choosing any doctor – ample time and research should be given to weigh your options. Choose a sinus specialist that a lot of people trust and has a lot of experience in dealing with sinus-related conditions.
ENT Specialist Singapore
- Address: 3 Mount Elizabeth, #08-02 Mount Elizabeth Orchard Medical Centre, Singapore 228510
- Phone: (65) 6235 3886
- Operating Hours: Mondays – Fridays: 9.00am to 5.00pm, Saturdays: 9.00am to 12.00pm