Sinusitis. Medically known as rhinosinusitis, a sinus infection occurs when your nasal cavities become infected, inflamed, and swollen. Sinusitis is usually caused by a virus and often persists even after other upper respiratory symptoms are gone. In some cases, rarely fungus, or bacteria, may cause a sinus infection.
The pressure is building in your forehead, your nose is running, and you just don’t feel good. You suspect that you may have a sinus infection or sinusitis. A sinus infection has similar symptoms to a common cold. The big difference between the two is how long those symptoms linger. Sinusitis symptoms typically last no longer than 10 days. Sinus infections almost always get better on their own. Antibiotics won’t help a sinus infection caused by a virus or an airborne irritation, like secondhand smoke, but there are some things you can do to try to speed up the recovery process.
Here are the top home remedies to help ease your sinus pain and inflammation to get rid of your sinus infection faster.
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Breathe in steam from a pot or bowl of warm water or take a hot shower. You also can place a warm, wet towel on your face, followed by a cool towel, to help ease sinus pain and open your nasal passages.
2. Drink Plenty of Water
To help flush the virus out of your system, make sure you’re adequately hydrated. Aim to drink at least 8 ounces of water every two hours.
3. Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medications
Any OTC remedies typically used for colds can also help treat sinus infections, as greater than 80 percent of the symptoms are caused by viruses. Tylenol or ibuprofen works well for symptoms like fever, muscle aches, headache, and sore throat. Throat sprays or cough drops can help with post-nasal drip symptoms. If you’re having trouble sleeping, try a combination of cold and sinus sleep medication, like Nyquil.
4. Eat Spicy Food
Eat spicy foods to help clear your nasal passages. Add hot peppers, or hot sauce to your meal.
5. Nasal Irrigation
Nasal irrigation is a process often used to ease the symptoms of sinusitis. According to recent research, using a neti pot with a saline solution can get rid of some symptoms of chronic sinusitis.
Follow the directions supplied with your specific neti pot. Here are the general directions:
- Fill the pot with the saline solution.
- Incline your head over the sink at a 45-degree angle.
- Insert the spout of the pot into your top nostril. Carefully pour the saline solution down that nostril.
- Repeat the process with the other nostril.
Remember to sanitize your neti pot after every use. Only use distilled water. Water straight from the sink may have contaminants, like bacteria or parasites, that could make your condition worse.
Get plenty of rest to help your body fight the infection and speed up recovery. While you sleep, prop yourself up with a couple of pillows. Staying elevated can help you breathe more comfortably
Sinus infections are very common. Symptoms normally go away on their own within 10 days. OTC medications and natural home remedies for sinus infection may help relieve your symptoms. If your symptoms last more than 10 days, talk to your doctor.