Charley Webb discusses her sinus pain on Instagram
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Symptoms of the flu include: headaches, fatigue, and a stuffy nose. These too are symptoms of a sinus infection, so how can you tell them apart? Dr Troy Woodward said: “Knowing which one you have is tricky.” However, four key indicators could reveal whether you’ve developed a sinus infection.
How long have you had symptoms?
“If you have a runny nose, stuffy nose or sinus pressure that lasts for more than 10 days, suspect an infection,” Dr Woodward stated.
He continued: “If you have persistent facial pain, pressure or tenderness, you may have a sinus infection.”
Colouring of your nasal discharge
“If you have yellow or green mucus, it’s probably a sinus infection,” said Dr Woodward.
Another indicator of a sinus infection includes bad breath, but there are other possible signs too.
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Other symptoms of a sinus infection:
- Loss of smell or taste
- Aches in the upper jaw or teeth.
Dr Woodward recommends “plenty of rest”, hydration, and “rinsing out your sinuses with saline irrigation”.
This can “help thin mucus and flush it from your nasal cavity”.
What’s saline irrigation?
WebMD explained saline irrigation is when you “pour a saltwater (saline) solution into one nostril”.
“As it flows through your nasal cavity into the other nostril, it washes out mucus,” WedMD added.
Saline irrigation products are available in pharmacies, such as Boots.
WebMD instructs the person affected (once the saline product is bought) to lean over a sink and to tilt your head so that one nostril is pointed towards the sink.
This is when the saline product is put into one nostril, keeping your mouth open to breathe.
“The saltwater will run through your nasal passages and drain out of your other nostril and maybe your mouth,” WebMD stated.
You’re then advised to gently blow your nose to clear out the remaining solution, before repeating the procedure with the other nostril.
How does a sinus infection develop?
“It can happen if the lining of your sinuses and the passages between them become inflamed,” WebMD explained.
The inflammation blocks the sinuses from draining, causing bacteria to build up, leading to a sinus infection.
This exacerbates the inflammation, causing swelling, stuffiness, and pain.
Medical News Today pointed out that a sinus infection “will get better without treatment”.
However, as it can take a longer time than most people would like, decongestants, pain relief, and steroid sprays can all help.
A doctor may also prescribe antibiotics to help clear a sinus infection.
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