Sinuses are air-filled spaces behind the bridge of your nose, cheekbones and forehead. Sinuses drain mucus into the nasal passages when they are normal, but due to allergy, cold or bacterial infections sinuses become a budding ground for the microbes – as a result microbes flourish and cause infection and disrupt the normal & smooth flow of air inside the sinuses.
Inflammation of the sinuses and swelling when fluid builds up do not allow the sinuses to drain mucus. As a result, they become inflamed, swollen and congested. Sinusitis is diagnosed in a person if he or she has purulent nasal discharge for up to four weeks, which is associated with facial pressure, pain, fullness and nasal obstruction. The headache associated with this condition is a sinus headache.
Symptoms of sinus headache
- Pain in the forehead
- Headache getting worst when you lean forward
- Uncomfortable pressure behind your forehead
- Feeling exhausted
- Pressure in the nose, cheeks and forehead
- Pain in the cheeks and jaws
- Nasal congestion
- Redness and swelling of cheeks
- Watery eyes, runny and stuffy nose
Proper diagnosis of sinus headache is important!
The symptoms associated with tension headaches and even migraine are quite similar to sinus headaches – and therefore – there is a strong possibility of misdiagnosis. Furthermore, more than 50% of the cases are misdiagnosed as sinus headaches – and up to 90% of the people who see a doctor for a sinus headache get to know that they actually have migraine. Therefore, your ENT specialist examines you physically based on your symptoms and tells you whether your sinuses are blocked owing to which you have sinus headache.
Nowadays antibiotic resistance has become very common as the bacteria that are causing sinus infections are becoming antibiotics resistant. However, expert ENT specialists don’t prescribe antibiotics when you first see them and may advise you to wait for at least three to four days to see whether the mild sinus infection and its symptoms are getting better on its own – as the body will fight the infections naturally.Follow the instructions of the doctor, if he or she prescribes antibiotic to you; then take the medicines as per the instructions and follow the regimen even if you are relieved of symptoms prior to completing your therapy. You may also be prescribed decongestants and antihistamines as well for short time.
Do not use inhaled nasal decongestants for long or it may make your symptoms worst.If allergy is the cause of sinus headaches, then you may need preventive allergy treatment.
Prolonged usage of headache medicines, nasal inhalers and decongestants may cause rebound headaches and also make your condition worst if you have other health issues like high blood pressure. Therefore, it is better to talk to your doctor before taking any over the counter medicines to treat your sinus headache or headache associated with other cause.