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Sinus headaches are a result of your body’s response to a virus, bacteria or allergies. In both situations, the sinuses become swollen, inflamed, and full of mucus which can sometimes be painful, and which makes it very difficult to breathe, especially while sleeping.

The swelling of the nasal cavity creates a sense of pressure on the face and head, which can lead to a sinus headache. Unfortunately, this kind of pain often increases when you bend over or lay down. Luckily, sinus headache treatment is available, and there are a variety of options to help you when you’re suffering from this condition.

Sinus Headache Treatment

There are many different ways to treat this kind of head pain, which can feel like it is taking over your entire head. To make things easier for you while you deal with the discomfort, here are some options to try that could bring you some relief.

Drink Water

First, you should start by increasing your water intake. When the sinuses are swollen and irritated, the mucus can become dry and thick, which further blocks the nasal passages. Drinking more fluids will help liquefy the mucus and drain the blockage.

Besides from actually drinking water, you can also do this by breathing in steam from a hot shower, or using a humidifier to keep the air moist. However, make sure to clean the humidifier regularly to prevent fungal growth, which can also trigger allergies.

Rinse Your Nasal Cavities

You can also use a handy tool called a Neti Pot to cleanse the nasal cavities of mucus. Filling the Neti Pot with a saline solution, or a distilled water and salt solution, you pour the water in one nostril. It circulates through your nasal cavities(1) and comes out the other nostril. This effectively rinses the sinuses of any loose mucus or blockages, which lessens the pressure on the face. It isn’t the most comfortable treatment, but it is a proven sinus headache treatment.

There are also a wide range of other devices on the market which operate on a similar principle, and which also help to clear out the airways.

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Avoid Triggers

To optimise everything you are doing to decrease the symptoms, it’s beneficial to avoid triggers that could make your pain, inflammation and swelling worse. This includes triggers like inhaling cigarette smoke and strong perfumes. It might sound extreme, but even fast movements of your head and neck can sometimes also make the pain and pressure worse.

As a temporary solution, you can use a compress and alternate between a warm and cold wet cloth on your face. The warm cloth will help loosen the mucus so it can drain. On the other hand, the cold cloth will decrease the swelling of the sinuses and in turn lessen the pain.


There are a variety of over-the-counter (OTC) medications available for sinus headache treatment. Decongestants are useful in opening your airways and relieving blocked nasal cavities. However you don’t want to be using decongestants longer than what’s recommended on the label or they could make the headache worse.

These types of medication come in an assortment of oral pills and nasal sprays. If your pain is a result of allergies, then antihistamines are your best bet for sinus headache treatment.

Visit a Doctor

If the pain lasts longer than 24 hours, and the mucus is yellow or green in color, then it is advisable to go and see a doctor. This is because sometimes viruses in the sinuses can spread to other areas, or these symptoms could be indicative of an underlying issue. If your pain is accompanied by numbness, tingling, stiff neck, or nausea and vomiting, then you need to see a doctor for sinus headache treatment.

In this case, doctors can prescribe antibiotics to help kill any kind of bacteria, or they can give you stronger antihistamines for your allergies. As much as there are various options available, sometimes medication is the quickest and most convenient option to go for.


Sinus headaches can be very painful and irritating to the sufferer. Since these symptoms can get in the way of daily activities, it’s important to figure out what is the cause of the swelling, so you can choose the appropriate sinus headache treatment.

Since there are so many at-home treatments on how to get rid of a headache as well as medications on the market, the options can be overwhelming. When in doubt, see a doctor who can assess your symptoms and recommend the best route for treatment.

As we discussed, there are many ways to carry out sinus headache treatment options independently, but when the symptoms are severe, it is best to seek medical help, to avoid worsening the condition.

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