Sinusitis is an infection of the sinuses. These infections usually happen after a cold or with allergies. There are 3 types of sinusitis:
The sinuses are cavities, or air-filled spaces, near the nose. They are lined with mucous membranes. There are 4 different sinuses:
When the sinuses are blocked with discharge, bacteria may begin to grow. This leads to a sinus infection or sinusitis.
The most common bacteria that cause acute sinusitis include:
The following are the most common symptoms of sinusitis:
The symptoms of sinusitis can be like other health conditions. Make sure your child sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
A sinus infection sometimes happens after an upper respiratory infection or common cold. The cold causes swelling that can block the opening of the sinuses. This can cause a sinus infection. Allergies can also lead to sinusitis because of swelling and increased mucus. Other possible conditions that can lead to sinusitis include:
The healthcare provider will ask about your child’s symptoms and health history. He or she will give your child a physical exam. Your child may also have tests, such as:
Treatment will depend on your child’s symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how severe the condition is.
Acute sinusitis may get better on its own. When it doesn’t, your child’s healthcare provider may prescribe:
Note: Don’t use over-the-counter decongestant nasal sprays without checking with your child’s healthcare provider. These sprays may make symptoms worse.
Recurrent sinusitis is also treated with antibiotic and allergy medicines. Your child’s healthcare provider may refer you to an ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist for testing and treatment.
Treatment for chronic sinusitis may include:
Care may also include:
There are things that can help your child avoid sinusitis. They include:
Tips to help you get the most from a visit to your child’s healthcare provider: