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Sinus Headaches - Surviving The Persistent Pain

Aug 17, 2007
The symptoms are obvious: persistent pain in the side of the face and/or eye; congestion, and fever. These are all signs of a sinus infection, which can lead to severe sinus headaches.

Most commonly experienced during a bad cold, allergies, or the flu, sinus headaches can also be the symptom of a more serious sinus disease that may be habitually blocking the sinus ducts. This can cause repeat infections that must always be diagnosed and treated by a qualified physician.

A true sinus headache is caused by an acute infection that causes sinus ducts to become blocked, preventing normal drainage, which creates negative pressure within the sinuses. This can leave a patient with symptoms like a dull ache and feeling of fullness in the face and head, to severe pain behind the eyes, back of the head and even teeth. Caused by an infection, a true sinus headache is almost always accompanied by fever and other flu-like symptoms.

The face contains four pairs of sinuses, and when one or more of them become infected, a variety of sinus headache symptoms may occur. They include:

Frontal Sinuses. Located over the eyes, an infection here will cause minor to severe forehead pain.

Ethmoid Sinuses. Found in the deep recesses of the nose, the pain of infection here will radiates between and behind the eyes.

Sphenoid Sinuses. The deepest of the sinuses, it causes severe pain in the back of the head when infected. This type of sinus infection is the most rare of all infections.

Maxillary Sinuses. Located in the middle third of the face, pain of an infection is experienced across the face and below the eyes, next to the nose. Most sufferers experience this type of sinus headache.

When the ducts of any of these sinuses becomes blocked on a regular basis, the patient is known to suffer from chronic sinusitis, and must be treated with a course of antibiotics, decongestants and nasal sprays. These patients have limited options other than surgery.

Depending on the physical cause of the repeat infections, surgery may also be recommended to remove polyps that may be blocking the air ducts, or correct a deviated septum to alleviate the progression of the infections and ease the discomfort of repeat attacks. Unfortunately, there is no real prevention of the sinus headache, due to the fact that it is caused by a medical condition and/or chronic infection.
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