Sinusitis is the inflammation of the air cavities within the passage of the nose3.
How to spot sinusitis:
Here are some common symptoms to look out for in both acute and chronic sinusitis:
- Congestion in the nose7
- Pain and swelling in the sinus areas7
- Decreased sense of smell7
- Headache, toothache, earache and eye pain6
- Productive cough - especially at night7
Discoloured dischare can be found in severe cases of sinusitis8, while a post nasal drip that irriates the throat is associated specifcally with chronic sinusitis6.
Sinusitis due to a cold or the flu:
Let's take a step-by-step look at how sinusitis usually develops from a common cold7.
- During a cold the mucous membranes in the nasal cavity swell up and block the openings of the sinuses.
- More air in the sinuses is absorbed into the bloodstream.
- Pressure inside the sinuses decreases, drawing fluid into the sinuses and causing discomfort.
- The build-up of trapped fluid encourages bacteria to multiply.
- White blood cells and more fluid enter the sinuses to fight off the bacteria.
- This leads to continued pressure changes and pain.
|Key symptoms of sinusitis|
Sinusitis in children:
At first, it can be tricky to distinguish sinusitis from an upper respiratory tract infection in children8. Sinusitis is, however, usually the suspect when pus-filled nasal discharge continues for more than 10 days and child remains tired with a persistent cough7.