What is a Sinus Infection?
The nose is a very sensitive instrument made up of delicate bones and membranes that are a central location for some of the most painful sinus infections. The membranes in the nose are what produce mucus. Though mucus is the main line of defense for filtering out any germs, it is also the main cause for sinus infections.
Sinus infections are caused when your sinuses become congested and are unable to drain mucus. That mucus then becomes infected from being stuck in the sinuses, causing infection. A sinus infection and a severe cold have many of the same symptoms and can easily be mistaken for each other. If you think you have a sinus infection, check our list of symptoms:
- Thick, yellow, foul-smelling nasal discharge
- Pressure or pain around the face and eyes
- Headache, generally in the forehead area
- Nasal obstruction
- Post-nasal drip
- A cold that won’t go away or gets worse
- Fever or cough
If you have these symptoms, you could have a sinus infection. When dealing with this, you want to be able to get rid of it as fast as possible or at least alleviate some of the pain and pressure from the infection. Here are a few helpful home remedies that will get you back in shape without having to go see a doctor.
It is very important to stay hydrated. Drink lots of water, clear broth or hot tea. When staying hydrated, try to stay away from sugary drinks and caffeine; these types of drinks will dehydrate your system. This can cause the already infected mucus to thicken. Drinking plenty of fluids will help to thin out the mucus and allow it to drain from the sinuses.
Inhaling steam can help break up thick mucus to help drain your sinuses. You can do this with either a humidifier or a bowl of water. If using a bowl of water, make sure your face is close to the surface of the water and drape a towel over the back of your head to trap the steam. Inhale deeply to allow the steam to clean out your sinuses. For more effective results, you can add eucalyptus or peppermint oil to either the humidifier or the water. Both of these oils will help to break up the mucus more effectively.
Try Using Vinegar
An easy home remedy for a sinus infection is apple cider vinegar. You can add this to any warm drink like hot water or tea. Just add two or three tablespoons of the raw vinegar and drink it three times a day for maximum relief. The vinegar will help to thin out the extra mucus and relieve congestion and sinus pressure. If you are finding the vinegar hard to drink, try mixing it with honey and lemon.
Boost Your Immune System
Along side tending to the symptoms of a sinus infection, it is important to remember your immune system. Giving it that extra boost will help it take care of the infection. A great way to do this is to increase vitamin intake. You should take extra Vitamin C to help the body resist the deficiencies in the immune system. Another way to do this is to add a few drops of oregano oil to a cup of juice, water or another beverage. This will help your immune system to kick the sinus infection.
With any one of these home remedies, you can alleviate painful symptoms and get over your sinus infection quicker. It is important to act as soon as symptoms show to prevent a serious sinus infection from developing. If the infection continues to get worse, see a doctor for medication or surgery. Don’t let a sinus infection keep you down—take care of it now.