What Is The Truth About Sinus Infections?

Sinus infections are fairly common, and so are the myths about them. The wrong information about these infections could lead to prolonged discomfort from the symptoms. If you suffer from sinus infections, here are some of the myths you should be wary of and the truth about them.  

Antibiotics Are Needed to Treat Sinus Infections 

Sinus infections are caused by viruses, bacteria, and sometimes fungi. The discomfort that you are feeling could also be the result of an underlying condition that is impacting your sinuses. For instance, allergies and teeth infections can also lead to the symptoms of a sinus infection.  

Whether or not antibiotics are needed to treat a sinus infection depends on the cause. If the infection is caused by bacteria, then your doctor will likely recommend the use of an antibiotic to treat it. However, if allergies are to blame, antibiotics would have no effect on the infection or its symptoms.  

Green Nasal Discharge Indicates an Sinus Infection 

Ideally, you should never resort to self-diagnosing yourself at home. Unfortunately, many people do, and the result is often a misdiagnosis. When it comes to green nasal discharge, some people mistakenly believe it to be an indication that they have a sinus infection. In reality, there are other reasons that this discharge can occur.  

Nasal discharge usually becomes discolored as it sits in the nasal passage. If you are blowing your nose frequently, there is a good chance that the discharge will be clear because it has not had time to sit in the nasal passage. Therefore, you can still have clear discharge and have a sinus infection. You should never rely on the color of the discharge to determine whether or not there is cause for concern.  

Sinus Surgery Completely Prevents Infections 

If you are thinking of having sinus surgery to prevent future infections, you should talk to your doctor. Sinus surgery is designed to open your sinus cavity. It is not effective in preventing infections. However, the newly opened cavity allows the doctor to treat future infections with sinus rinses and topical antibiotics.  

In reality, whether or not you get an infection again depends on the reason you initially developed one. For instance, if allergies were the cause, you will likely have an infection again if you do not take control of your allergies.  

Your doctor can assess your health and make a determination as to the best way to treat your sinus infection. He or she can also help you find ways to reduce the likelihood that you will have an infection in the future. 

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