If you think about it, your brain is a heavy organ sitting in a heavy skull, which then sits on your spinal column. The sinus cavities actually help to make the skull lighter so that your spinal column is able to withstand all of this weight and not collapse. Of course, the sinuses are constructed in such a way that they should remain clear and aerated in order to prevent infections. They do this by secreting fluids that continuously bathe the sinuses, keeping them clean and preventing bacteria from growing. In fact, you can think of the sinuses as “gutters” that drain bacteria and debris into the nose for elimination.
My sinus problems always seem to be worse in the morning—why is that?
People can have trouble any time of the day, depending upon the type of sinusitis that they have and what triggers it. But in the morning when you are lying down, foreign particles are draining into the back of your throat and not getting cleared out, so it may feel worse. Also, if you are on medication, it/your treatment would likely have most likely worn off overnight. Once you get up and start moving, it should start to subside.
Is it safe to fly with sinusitis?
If your sinusitis is being treated and is under control, you should be fine. You may want to consider using a decongestant before takeoff and landing, as that can help prevent problems. But if you have a sinus condition that is untreated, the altitude changes could cause problems such as sinus squeeze, pressure and pain.
Is there a connection between allergies and sinusitis?
An allergy plays a role in approximately 70% of all sinusitis cases. However, for most people, allergies are not the only contributing factor to their symptoms. Because sinusitis is most often caused by a combination of factors, of which an allergy is just one, it makes proper diagnosis and treatment very important to ensure you get optimal symptomatic relief. A recent study shows that most sinusitis sufferers have tried up to eight different products without achieving satisfactory improvement in their symptoms.
OTC medications seem to receive bad press. Is there anything that I should be aware of in using these products?
Decongestant nasal sprays are effective and safe if used according to directions and for no more than 3–5 days. However, if you use some sprays repeatedly, you may experience what is referred to as a “rebound effect.” This means that you have to use more and more of the spray just to get simple relief. (NOTE: there is no rebound effect associated with Sinus Buster® Nasal Spray.) Oral decongestants are also effective, but can cause insomnia and heart racing in some people. Also, oral decongestants are contraindicated for people with certain conditions such as high blood pressure and prostate disease. Many antihistamines, such as diphenhydramine, work well, but may cause sedation and dry mouth. The newer, non-sedating products, such as loratadine, work well for allergic rhinitis, but are not very effective in non-allergic rhinitis. So to summarize, there are many products out on the market that are effective and worth trying—but make sure that you use them according to directions.
Rinses such as neti pots and irrigators seem to be getting popular. How effective are they?
Saline rinses are a very effective treatment and, when used in conjunction with capsaicin, are a good regimen. Saline rinses are able to clean out mucus, keep the osteum open, and help resolve congestion.
Is there something that I can do to improve the overall health of my sinuses or to prevent problems?
First, it’s important to explain how problems like sinusitis can arise. Your nose is the gateway to the sinuses. The nose contains turbinates, which act as filters to prevent pollutants and allergens from accumulating and going into the lungs. The sinuses are lined with fine, hair-like projections called cilia, which also prevent the accumulation of microorganisms and irritants that enter the nose and sinuses from the air that you inhale by moving them via mucus (which is normally produced by the sinus) toward a tiny opening called the ostium. The ostium provides a drainage outlet for your sinuses. The ostium can become blocked due to recurrent inflammation caused by infection, allergens, and other irritants resulting in decreased drainage and oxygenation in the sinuses causing pressure/pain and eventual bacterial overgrowth and infection. It is important for optimal health that the ostium or sinus openings are kept clean and clear. Regular, gentle rinsing with a saline solution can help accomplish this.
When is it time to stop self-treatment and seek a doctor’s help?
When your OTC medications don’t work and you are plagued with infections, headaches, and/or ear plugging (especially if your symptoms mean missing work or school or impact your ability to concentrate or sleep). This would certainly be a good time to seek out a specialist who can help identify the cause of your illness and the best course of therapy.
What does capsicum annuum 1000M Korsakovian Attenuation mean?
The Sinus Buster product is manufactured to “1000M attenuation on the Korsakovian Scale,” which approximates to a 1 part per million dilution of the active ingredient, capsaicin. Click here for more information.