If you suffer from frequent sinus infections, you are far from alone. Around 37 million people are struck with this condition every year. While the most obvious cause of sinus infections involve blockages in your sinus cavities, there are many unusual sinus infection causes that can linger underneath. Could any of the following be the cause of your sinus woes?
Swimming in Chlorinated Pools
Swimming as exercise is great for your health. However, spending a lot of time in chlorinated pools can make sinus infections more likely. The chlorine can irritate nasal passages, leading to inflammation and susceptibility to infection. This becomes even more likely when you dive into the water. The pressure can push chlorinated water deeper into your sinuses, irritating delicate tissue.
People with diabetes typically have higher blood glucose levels. Those elevated levels can make it more likely that you will develop infections, particularly ones in the sinuses and other delicate areas.
These infections are not limited to the common viral and bacterial invasions that typically lead to sinus infections. People with diabetes can also develop oral yeast infections, which can spread to the nasal cavity. This unusual sinus infection type can sometimes be harder to detect and treat than more common infections.
Here in Texas, we rarely have to worry about a lack of humidity. However, if you spend a lot of time in air-conditioned buildings or fly regularly, dry air can be causing problems. When the air is too dry, it can dry out your sinuses and thicken mucus trapped in your nasal passages. When this happens, bacteria and viruses can get trapped, too, leading to infection.
Staying well-hydrated when you are indoors can help. Avoid caffeine and alcohol and drink plenty of water. You can also irrigate your sinuses with a neti pot or a saline nasal spray to cut down on dryness and irritation.
Nasal spray decongestants can be a lifesaver when you are dealing with the pain of a sinus headache or infection. However, overusing this medication can wind up making sinus pressure and sinus infections more likely. When over the counter sinus sprays are used too much, your body becomes less sensitive to the medication. This can, in turn, lead to tissues becoming swollen again, which is known as rebound nasal congestion. As a result, fluids can become trapped, making infections more likely.
When a sinus infection causes pain and pressure, do not automatically reach for an over the counter spray. These sprays should be used sparingly so that they do not lead to rebound congestion.
Issues with Your Anatomy
Some people have nasal abnormalities that make them more prone to sinus infections. These can include deviated septums that make it hard for your sinuses to drain properly. Other causes can include cleft palate, narrow sinus passages and even tumors.
No matter what is causing your sinus misery, balloon sinuplasty can help. The procedure helps open up your sinuses, making future sinus infections less likely. Are you suffering from frequent sinus infections? Give us a call today to learn whether balloon sinuplasty is for you.