One of my daughters is always battling allergies and sinus infections. In the beginning it was hard to tell if her allergies were just acting up or she had another sinus infection coming on since the symptoms are similar. Over the years we’ve learned to tell the difference between the two and are able to head off any major infection. Here are some things to look out for that indicate an infection.
In most cases, if you have an infection you’ll have a fever. Anything over the normal body temperature of 98.6–especially if it’s several degrees higher–is considered a fever.
When an infection of the sinuses is present you may notice swelling under your eyes. When you try to breathe it may be difficult to get air through your nose since your sinus passages are swollen as well.
You could also have pain behind your eyes, nose, and cheekbones–the sinus area. If you cough, sneeze, or bend over the pain may be more intense. Many times my daughter would have to sleep sitting up since lying down caused too much pain.
The nasal cavity becomes inflamed when you have allergies, a cold, or a sinus infection. The difference is, with an infection you may notice thick yellow or green mucus when you blow your nose.
If you’re diagnosed with an infection you’ll most likely be prescribed antibiotics which are typically taken for one to four weeks, depending on how serious the infection is. Although you’ll probably start to feel better within a few days, it’s important to take all of your prescribed antibiotics as directed to be sure you get rid of the infection. If your nose is very stuffy you can use an over the counter sinus decongestant to open the sinuses until the antibiotics take effect.
It’s important to see your doctor and never self medicate, however, my daughter has chronic sinus infections and I don’t like her being on antibiotics unless absolutely necessary. Now that we can tell when an infection is coming on I have her take vitamins A, C, E, and D to boost her immune system. I also give her grapefruit seed extract tablets which work wonders as a natural antibiotic yet they don’t kill the good bacteria in the body. Prescription antibiotics kill off everything and many times my daughter would come down with a yeast infection after taken them. To help open her sinuses she’ll take a steamy shower and she also uses a saline nose spray.
See Your Doctor
If you notice any or all of the above symptoms it’s wise to make an appointment to see your doctor and get a professional diagnosis before a potential sinus infection gets worse, causing possible permanent damage to your sinuses.
WebMD – Is It A Cold Or Sinus Infection?