Common Diseases of the Sinus Cavities
In dealing with diseases of the sinus cavities one should recognize that food can play an important role in their causes and relief. Some foods can produce excessive amount of mucus which can irritate the sinus and nasal cavities. When the latter becomes a chronic issue it can lead to undesirable disorders in those cavities. We are not saying, however, that all diseases of the sinus and nasal cavities are caused by food or excessive mucus, but that they can perhaps contribute to them (those diseases) much more than many would realize.
This disease is linked to inflammation of the lining of your nasal passages and sinus cavities that lasts more than 12 weeks. More technically this is named "chronic rhinosinusitis," but it is also known as chronic sinusitis--albeit one can more likely have " chronic sinusitis" without nasal polyps.
Nasal Cavity and Upper Respiratory Tract
a - vertebrae, b - esophagus, c - trachea
d - cricoid cartilage, e - laryngopharynx, f -
pharynx, g - nasopharynx, k - tongue,
l - hard palate,
o - superior turbinate,
p - middle turbinate, q - inferior turbinate
If they're small you may not be aware you have them, for nasal polyps themselves are soft and lack sensation. On the other hand multiple growths or a large polyp may block your nasal passages and sinuses.
Chronic sinusitis with nasal polyps can have the these symptoms and signs:
- PND (postnasal drip)
- Decreased or absent sense of smell
- Loss of sense of taste
- Pain in your upper teeth
Pressure over your forehead and face
- Itching around your eyes
- A runny nose
- Stubborn stuffiness
Facial pain or headache
It's not clear why some people develop this ailment and others don't. Or why why ongoing inflammation triggers polyp formation in some people and not in others. The inflammation occurs in the mucous membranes lining the nose cavity and sinuses. There's some evidence that people who develop polyps have a different immune system response and different chemical markers in their mucous membranes than do those who don't develop polyps. Some authorities believe that all sinus disorders are associated with the cilia--tiny hairlike organelles found in all breathing apparatus organ membranes whose main function is to move mucus in the right direction. Frequent colds, sinus congestions, especially when mucus does not move freely, would tend to encourage the formation of polyps if nothing else due to the constant irritation in the nasal and sinus cavity membranes. Keeping the sinuses and nasal cavities clear could help lessen this irritation factor. Sometime infected mucus is produced in the nasal cavity that can be the cause of irritation and other sinus problems which can contribute to the formation of polyps. Excessive mucus relief should be sought, therefore, whenever much mucus continues to be produced in excessive quantities, whether it be green mucus, clear or yellow mucus. Allergic irritation and some foods can trigger excessive mucus production, thus they should be seriously considered. It should be kept in mind tha some foods can exacerbate sinus issues because of their mucus producing properties.
Nasal polyps can form at any age, but they're most common in young and middle-aged adults. Nasal polyps may form anywhere in your sinuses or nasal passages, but they appear most often in an area where sinuses near your eyes, nose and cheekbones all drain through winding passages into your nasal cavity.
It is challenging to clear up completely the chronic sinusitis that underlies the polyps condition. One needs to work with the health care professionals to develop the best long-term relief plan to to address the factors, such as allergies, that can contribute to chronic sinusitis and inflammation.
Total or partial elimination is the relief goal for nasal polyps. Because polyps tend to reappear surgery is usually not the first option; medications are usually the first approach.
They usually shrink or make the polyps disappear. Drug relief may include:
- Sprays of nasal corticosteroid--They are used to to reduce inflammation and thereby shrink the polyps or eliminate them completely. Common ones are Flonase, Nasonex, Veramyst, Nasonex, Rhinocort, Flonase and others.
Oral and injectable corticosteroids--Inasmuch as corticosteroids can have serious side effects they are carefully monitored and taken for a short time only--together with a nasal spray or by itself. If the oral option does not yield positive results, then the next step is often injecting the drug into the polyps.
Other medications--Antihistamines and antibiotics are sometimes used to address allergies and sinus infections which underlie the formation of polyps
This should, obviously, be the last alternative. The surgical procedure would depend on the size, number and location of the polyps and the extent of inflammation.
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Technically it is an inflammation of the paranasal sinuses, which may be due to irritation, infection, allergy or autoimmune problems. Most cases are due to a viral infection and resolve over the course of about a week. It is a common condition affecting over 30 million people in the United States annually.
Sinusitis signs and symptoms include:
Headaches--Usually begins on one side of the head and progresses to both sides. It is constant and localized to the specific sinus that is infected. It is dull, with a feeling of sinus pressure.
Nasal discharge--It can start with clear mucus and then turn to a thick yellow mucus or green mucus; sometimes with mucus containing blood.
- Localized headache or toothache--Which distinguishes the sinusitis headache from other headaches
- Infection of eye socket or other facial bones is possible--Which can result in the loss of sight and is accompanied by serious illness and fever
- Can cause inner ear issues--Accompanied by dizziness, vibrating sensation in the head, or sensation of pressure or head heaviness
There can be other symptoms associated with sinus infection--sinusitis
Heavy sinus drainage
Not all these signs and symptoms need to be present with sinusitis.
Causes of sinusitis
- Structural--for example, deviated septum, small sinus openings (ostia), nasal polyps, hereditary (from the cystic fibrosis gene), previous sinusitis occurrences which tend to worse associated with the inflammation of the sinus membranes each additional time
- Poor secretion from the maxillary sinus to the nasal cavity
- Inhalation of second hand smoke can affect people with rhinosinusitis
- Dental disorders
- Disorders in the Eustachian or auditory tubes which connects with the sinus cavities
Some mucus producing foods can contribute to sinusitis
Chronic sinus pressure not properly addressed and mucus allowed to stagnate
Stagnant mucus from sinus pressure
Relief of sinusitis
Sprays and nasal irrigation--For temporary relief of symptoms only, but should be used following professional recommendations
- Antibiotics--By far most bouts with sinusitis have viruses underlying them therefore antibiotics are not effective. Unresolved cases after 10 days are sometimes addressed with amoxicillin, an antibiotic, or amoxillin/clavunate if the former does not bring improvement by itself
- Surgery--The last option. It is used sometimes to remove anatomical obstructions, etc., to clear the way so sinuses can drain properly, etc.
Fungal relief--Fungus in the mucus can cause sinusitis and antifungal relief is experimentally being used
Nipping sinus pressure in the bud could help prevent sinusitis by preventing mucus stagnation and infection. Sinus acupressure (sinus pressure points) is a natural sinus draining procedure which can drain the sinuses in a short time. Temporary bouts with sinus pressure can sometimes be quickly fixed.
- do acupressure daily--it just take a few minutes
- do not disturb the cilia with OTC medications or inhalations
Some OTC remedies may help ease sinusitis symptoms such as pain, relief of pressure, phlegm, or any other sinus problems associated with sinusitis. A regular licensed pharmacist can be consulted to see what is available
Fasting has been to detoxify the body and enhance the immune system
- if in doubt check with your physician
- follow a protocol
some herbal teas can enhance the immune system
Sinusitis can be a chronic condition and giving the body organs a full nerve energy flow can revitalize the body's own self-healing
Nip sinus pressure in the bud
Keep sinuses clear at all times
Healthful living and eating
- Drink 5-6 full glasses of water a day
- Boost immune system at first sign of infection
- Relieve environmental allergic reactions properly
Keeping the sinus cavities clear specially from:
By preventing sinusitis other respiratory organs issues may be avoided like:
Knowing the mucus color meaning can help early detection of sinusitis
Knowing how to clear sinus pressure early on can be very helpful
Deal with allergies that do not go away
Technically allergic rhinitis, also called hay fever and runny nose, is an inflammation of the nasal cavity membranes. The direct pathway to the sinus cavities is through the nasal passageway. And as with all respiratory organs, passages, etc., the nose cavity is lined with sensitive membranes which sometimes are implicated in sinus problems, leading physicians to coin the term "rhinosinusitis". In rhinitis, nasal tissue becomes irritated and inflamed usually from allergic reactions to the environment, e.g., pollens, dust, chemicals smog, air dryness, etc. Rhinosinusitis combines the sinusitis or sinus infection symptoms of headache and intense pressure with rhinitis' sneezing, sore throat, fatigue and congestion. Rhinitis affects millions of people and if not properly addressed it could lead to other respiratory disorders such as polyps, chronic infections, etc. If you suffer from allergies or sinus pressure also the food you eat may be a key factor in your fighting rhinitis. House dust can exacerbate rhinitis and cause sinus pressure.