With the weather changes of spring comes another round of colds. Everywhere you go you can probably hear people sniffling away either from allergies, colds, or a nasty sinus infection. If you’re wondering if you’ve progressed from your typical cold to an all-out infection here are 6 signs that will help you in self-diagnosing.
1. Sinus Pressure
Sinus pressure occurs when fluid has become trapped in the nasal cavities. This trapped fluid can then make certain areas of your face sensitive to touch and you may feel like you need to sneeze, but aren’t able to. The places you’ll likely feel the most pressure are in the cheeks, around and behind your eyes, and of course in your nose. Usually bending over will increase the pain/pressure in your face.
Because of the built-up fluid in your nose, there is a good chance you now have a headache. This headache will be in your forehead and if it goes on for long enough can eventually cause pain in your neck from the prolonged stress.
3. Postnasal Drip
Most people call a postnasal drip a runny nose. You will have mucus that continues to leak down your throat causing you to feel hoarse and congested. There’s a good chance a cough will accompany this nasty drip as you struggle to keep your airways clear.
4. Tooth Pain
As unrelated as this may seem you may experience some pain in your teeth or jaw. This happens because your sinuses swell and press on your gums and the roots of your teeth. This swelling can cause jaw pain and sometimes toothaches, but fortunately, the pain should go away once the swelling goes down.
5. Colored Mucus
When you have a typical cold your mucus is completely clear colored, but if you have an infection that will change. Bacteria or fungus in your mucus can change its color causing it to look anywhere from deep green to bright yellow. That colorful phlegm can drip from your nose or come up when you cough.
It is hard work for your body to fight off an infection, so if you’re feeling extra tired that is totally normal. During the battle to regain your health, you might even have a slight fever, but a bit of rest and possibly some medicine should have you feeling back to your old self in just a few days.
If you’ve read through this list and everything sounds a little too familiar then you’re probably wondering how to take care of your sinus infection. Here are a few tips to help you feel better:
- Take a nice hot shower or bath. The steam will help to clear you out. If you don’t want to get all wet you could also place a warm damp cloth over your sinus area. The moist warm air will help to loosen up the mucus giving you some relief.
- Get some saline spray, decongestant spray, or a neti pot to help clear out your sinuses.
- Take some antihistamines to help reduce inflammation. This will especially help if you are experiencing headaches or pain in your teeth.
With a sinus infection, your road to recovery shouldn’t take too long. Soon you’ll be able to smell the flowers again, but for now, take the time to relax. You won’t get better unless you give your body a fighting chance.