With the weather fluctuating from day to day — and after a few especially nasty allergy seasons — you might be sick of sinus headaches. We are too. So for 2014, we’d like to help you leave those pesky aches and pains behind.
First, it’s important to understand why sinus headaches happen. Your sinuses are air-filled cavities behind your nose area, inner cheek area and central forehead.
They can become blocked and inflamed for many reasons, including colds that lead to sinus infections, allergies and physical injuries or development issues. Your doc can help you uncover the cause, but you’ll want to discuss your symptoms to start.
When you have a sinus headache, you might notice:
- Facial pressure and pain
- Pain that gets worse when you move or bend over
- A stuffy or runny nose
- A cough or sore throat
The last three symptoms typically don’t go along with regular headaches, so these are very important to share.
Your doc can advise you about a specific course of treatment. These are a few of the more common recommendations.
- The lifestyle approach. Making simple changes at home, like using a humidifier, breathing in shower steam with your bathroom door closed a few times daily, and regularly vacuuming (especially if you have pets) can prove helpful.
- Medications. For some patients, doctors prescribe nasal sprays to calm down sinuses. For patients with symptoms that last a few weeks, antibiotics are sometimes used. For others, over-the-counter decongestants and expectorants might be recommended.
- Natural remedies. Some people find a bit of relief with soothing herbal teas (such as peppermint or ginger), and it’s important to drink lots of water while healing. Certain stretches and yoga poses also can help ease your body and mind.
At your doctor’s appointment, you might be asked about underlying health issues before you’re given a treatment plan. If an undiagnosed allergy or an old nose injury is really the cause of your trouble, it’s key to figure that out. Otherwise, even the best treatments can seem like bandaging a boat leak without fixing the hole itself.
Whatever’s giving you a headache, we’re here to help you sort it out. Give us a call. Make 2014 the year you kiss those aches goodbye.