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Sinusitis

When your sinuses (air chambers in the bone behind your cheeks, eyebrows and jaw) are inflamed or infected, it leads to sinusitis. The different sinus areas are:


Frontal sinus – on the brow area
Maxillary sinuses – inside each cheekbone
Ethmoid sinuses – behind the nose bridge and between the eyes
Sphenoid sinuses – behind the ethmoids in the upper region of the nose


When the sinuses are blocked, the mucus is not sufficiently drained thereby leading to sinusitis. Sinusitis occurs when trapped air lays pressure and causes pain in the sinus regions. Typically, sinusitis follows a cold or respiratory ailment. The increased mucus and fungal production leads to inflammation in the nasal passage. Often a structural defect in the nasal cavity or weakened immune system can be the cause for a sinus attack. Allergic rhinitis can bring on an attack of sinusitis. The symptoms and pain associated with sinusitis depend on the affected sinus. Damp weather, environmental pollutants and asthma often lead to sinus attacks. This inflammation is usually the result of a viral infection, an allergy (pollen, dust, pet dander, molds, and food), or an environmental irritant such as air pollution, perfume or cigarette smoke. Persons suffering from chronic inflammation of the nasal passages have an increased risk of suffering sinusitis. Swimming, diving, nasal polyps, smoking or alcohol consumption can lead to blocked sinuses. Air travel is yet another possible trigger.


Acute sinus infection lasts for about a fortnight whereas chronic sinus infection festers longer, for months or years. Most affected persons tend to suffer from acute sinus infection. Typical symptoms of sinus infection:


  • Pain over frontal sinuses
  • Headache
  • Swelling of eyelids or tissues around the eyes
  • Earache
  • Neck pain
  • Stuffy nose
  • Facial tenderness
  • Bad breath
  • Ache in the upper teeth
  • Nasal congestion

Blood tests and cultures aid in diagnosing and detecting bacterial or fungal infections. Acute sinusitis is treated with antibiotics to control the bacterial infection. Decongestants and painkillers can provide relief to those suffering from sinus infection. On the other hand, chronic sinusitis may need to be treated with steroid nasal sprays. But prolonged use of such products are not without side-effects. Allergies and infections that contribute to the sinus infection must be appropriately treated. Children suffering from chronic sinus infection are treated with removal of adenoids. Functional endoscopic sinus surgery is performed on severe cases of chronic sinusitis where the natural openings of the sinuses are dilated to allow drainage of accumulated mucus.


Home remedies for treating sinus infections
1. Steam inhalation
2. Gentle warm compress on painful area
3. Use of electrostatic filters attached to heating and air conditioning equipment
4. Saline nasal spray
5. Rest with your head elevated to help drain your sinuses
6. Drink plenty of fluids and warm liquids in order to thin mucus

Reflexology

Reflexology is a gentle therapy that works on reflex points or pressure points on the foot. This in turn provides a cascading relieving effect on other parts of the body. Ailments such as migraine headaches, sinusitis, hormonal imbalances and breathing disorders have known to subside with appropriate reflexology treatment. Reflexology is sometimes referred to as zone therapy.

Reflexologists claim to relieve aches and pains by applying pressure on the correct reflex points on the foot. According to foot reflexology charts, the big toe is considered the reflex area for the head. The reflexologist uses thumb and fingers to locate sore spots on your hands and feet to improve circulation, promote relaxation and release tensions. Different parts of the foot also correspond with emotional and mental state. A person suffering from an imbalance within the body would experience greater tenderness. Gentle pressure removes wastes such as uric acid that has accumulated around the foot.


Foot reflexology charts are indicative maps that approximate to parts on the human anatomy they indicate reflex points on the toes and heels that represent each part and area of the body. Reflexology charts provide a guideline for the various reflex points for cardio-vascular, central nervous, digestive, endocrine, immune, lymphatic, muscular, reproductive, respiratory, sensory, skeletal, and urinary systems.


Nasal Polyps

Nasal polyps refer to non cancerous lesions that develop in the mucous lining of the nose or in the sinus cavities. Such polyps may manifest singularly or in a group and block the nasal passage. Typically nasal polyps are soft and jelly-like. This swollen mucus-covered tissue makes breathing and smelling difficult. Usually nasal polyps form as a result of chronic sinusitis, cystic fibrosis, allergic rhinitis or respiratory complaints such as asthma and hay fever. Nasal obstruction arising from a deviated nasal septum and inflammation of the nasal lining.


Nasal polyps are usually noticed in persons suffering from allergic rhinitis or chronic sinus infections. Patients suffering from nasal polyps may experience reduced sense of smell. Patients suffering from nasal polyps are likely to suffer chronic sinusitis, dull headache and runny and stuffy nose. Breathing becomes difficult and sleep apnea may be noticed in persons suffering from nasal polyps. CT scan of the nose aids in diagnosing nasal polyps, their exact size and location. Children with multiple nasal polyps are tested for cystic fibrosis with sweat test.


Nasal polyps are surgically removed with an endoscope. This surgery is called polypectomy. Removal can be done through the nose or sinuses. But they may recur after several years of surgery. Corticosteroids in the form of nasal sprays and drops help in reducing the size of nasal polyps. Besides they have considerably fewer side effects when compared with oral steroid medication. Anti-allergic medication can help control allergic infections.

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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: October 19, 2017