Sinusitis or sinus infection is the inflammation or swelling of the mucosal lining of any of the four pairs of paranasal sinuses embedded in the bones of the skull. This lining produces mucus which serves to clear out bacteria and foreign particles from the sinuses to keep these from clogging.

Because the spaces in these areas are tight, anything that can reduce the amount of space in the sinuses as well as the nasal passages can cause adverse consequences to the drainage of the sinuses. The immune system defenses of the nose prevent these from entering and infecting the sinuses.

How Sinusitis Starts
However, there are occasions when the body's defenses are down or are overwhelmed by the invading microbes. When this happens, the body produces more mucus to isolate the invading microorganisms, resulting to more blockage and mucus build-up. Eventually, the sinuses become congested enough that both mucus and microbes are stuck in what are originally hollow air chambers. The result: an ideal environment for bacterial and fungal growth. Depending on whether the body is able to address this problem or not with or without the help of medications and other treatment methods, this build-up may clear out in a matter of days or weeks.

The symptoms of sinusitis are directly related to the condition of your sinuses. If the blockage is severe, the commonly felt symptoms are headache, nasal congestion, pressure around the areas of the infected sinuses, reduced sense of smell and taste, and even bad breath. These are coupled with site-specific symptoms that are directly associated with the affected paranasal sinus.

- If you are suffering from maxillary sinusitis or the infection of the sinuses is located near your upper jaw or both sides of your nose, your symptoms may include aching of the upper teeth and upper jaw. You may even suffer from cheeks that are soft to the touch.

- If you are dealing with frontal sinusitis, your forehead may ache when touched. This is accompanied by low-grade headache and sensitivity of the eyes to light.

- Sphenoid sinusitis may cause you to have neck pains, earaches and deep aching of your head.

- If you have ethmoid sinusitis or the inflammation of the sinuses located between your eyes, you may experience swelling of the eyelids, inflammation of the tissues surrounding your eyes, and even constant tearing of the tear duct or the lacrimal glands. Your sense of smell may also be affected with symptoms getting worse when you touch the sides of your nose.

These symptoms may persist for 1 to 4 weeks, in the case of acute sinusitis, or from 4 weeks onward in the case of chronic sinusitis.

Treatment is, of course, integral in causing the symptoms to clear out. But for severe cases of sinusitis, you may have to undergo a selection of treatment methods before the symptoms completely subside. Typical sinusitis treatments include a round of antibiotics, anti-fungal and antihistamine medications, topical medications which may include anything from pain relievers to antimicrobials, home-care regimens, and or even surgery for cases that don’t resolve with standard treatments.

Author's Bio: 

For more information, visit