Sinus Sinus Sinus!

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sinus infectionPeople often associate sinus infections with spring and summer, but the upcoming winter season can bring about just as many sinus infections for different reasons. Most of us know the main culprits that bring about sinus infection, like a prolonged cold or allergies. However, it’s important to look out for some of the sneakier, less common ones so you can stay healthy and free of sinus infections this holiday season.

Smoking

Cigarette smoke is a nose irritant that often causes inflammation. Cigarette smoke also damages our natural sinus-cleaning systems, which makes us more susceptible to sinus infections. Those who avoid smoke are less likely to have irritated sinuses in the long run.

Dry Air

If mucus gets caught in the nasal passages for too long, it can thicken and dry up. This can worsen your cold symptoms and make you more prone to sinusitis. To keep your nasal passages moist drink plenty of water and avoid caffeinated beverages. Most importantly, consider keeping a humidifier in your house! They make the air a lot moister. This makes a big difference.


Irritants in the Air

Many things floating through the air like dust, air pollution, and strong odors can actually irritate the nasal passages enough to contribute to a sinus infection. They can cause excessive coughing and cause inflammation, which often leads to sinus problems. If you have asthma or known allergies, it is best to minimize your exposure to these things. Air purifiers help with this problem.

Sinus infections are hard to avoid completely, but keeping these triggers and causes in mind definitely eliminates some of the risk. If you are someone who is prone to sinus infections, there are some ways to get a little more long-term relief, like balloon sinuplasty. This is a way to open up blocked nasal passages, which allows for better ventilation and drainage. It can drastically decrease the amount of sinus infections a chronic sufferer will get. Sinus infections are annoying, but there are always ways to find some relief!

Swimming

Some people are sensitive to chlorine, so long periods of exposure to it can be irritating to the nasal tissue and sinuses. For this reason, fresh water is a better option for these people. Diving can be another irritant, as it forcefully shoves water up the nasal canals and can cause inflammation.

Flying

The changing air pressure that is associated with plane travel is the reason it can be a contributor to sinus infections. When air pressure is reduced in the cabin it can cause pressure to build in your head. This can lead to nasal passage blockages. In general, it often aggravates cold symptoms, which can always lead to more sinus problems. If you’re flying with a cold, consider taking a decongestant before take-off to relieve your sinuses.

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