Know Your Pain

A Quick Overview on Sinus Headache

Sinus headache is a kind of headache that is caused as a result of congestion in the sinuses. Sinuses are cavities filled with air that exist in the head. These bony sinuses connect the head to the nose through small openings. When the body is attacked by cold or any other allergy, excessive mucus blocks these small openings that results in a sinus headache.

Causes
Respiratory infections such as cold or flu or any other allergies lead to sinusitis i.e. inflammation of the sinus. Sinusitis results in blocked sinus that does not allow the mucus to drain and even blocks the circulation of air. Blocked or inflamed sinuses also serve as a breeding ground for various microorganisms. This results in a headache.

Symptoms
If you are suffering from a sinus headache, you might experience one or more of the following given symptoms.

* Pain and pressure around the cheeks and brow bone
* Sore throat
* Fever
* Cough
* Nasal discharge of a yellowish-green color or with a blood tinge
* Pain worsens when you bend or lie down

Risk factors
While sinusitis is enough a problem to alarm anyone, the problem can become graver in certain conditions. The chances of developing a chronic sinus headache are more if you have a weak immune system or are more prone to allergies like dust, mold or pollen. People suffering from asthma, nasal growth or cystic fibrosis are more susceptible to chronic sinus headaches.

Diagnosis
Your doctor may ask you questions about your headache pattern or any other related condition that you might have been suffering from. At times, tender sinuses indicate sinusitis. To check whether your sinuses are tender or not, the doctor may use an endoscope to examine your nasal passages. Mucus samples are also tested to examine the presence of any bacterial infection. Tests such as CT or MRI may also be conducted to examine the presence of sinusitis.

Treatment
Antibiotics are prescribed for those suffering from sinus headaches. Your doctor would prescribe you a certain course of medication. Make sure you complete the entire course given to you even if all the signs and symptoms disappear. Corticosteroid nasal sprays or pills can be prescribed if your headache is caused due to allergies or inflammation.

The headache starts to reduce as your nasal passages begin to clear up. During the course of medication, you can seek help of over-the-counter pain relievers, decongestants and saline nasal spray for immediate relief.

While you can treat sinus headaches with proper medical intervention, it would be even better if you make efforts to avoid headache. Try to avoid irritants like cigarette, cigar, and pipe smoke. Also wash your hands often to stave off the problem.