Sinus headaches are a result of your body’s response to a virus or allergies. In both situations, the sinuses become swollen, inflamed, and full of mucus which can sometimes be painful. The swelling of the nasal cavity can create a sense of pressure on the face and head. That pain often increases when you bend over or lay down. Luckily, sinus headache treatment is available by a variety of options.
Sinus Headache Remedy and Cures
First, you should start by increasing your water intake. When the sinus is swollen and irritated, the mucus can become dry and thick, further blocking the nasal passages. Drinking more fluids will help liquefy the mucus and drain the blockage. 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 trigger allergies.
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 blockage, which lessens the pressure on the face. It isn’t the most comfortable treatment, but it has been proven to help treat sinus headaches.
It’s beneficial to avoid headache triggers that could make your sinus headache worse, like inhaling cigarette smoke and strong perfumes. Fast movements of your head and neck can also make the pain and pressure worse. As a temporary solution, you can alternate between a warm and cold wet cloth on your face. The warm cloth will help loosen the mucus so it can drain; the cold cloth will decrease the swelling of the sinuses and in turn lessen the pain.
There are a variety of over-the-counter 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. They come in an assortment of oral pills and nasal sprays. If your sinus headache is a result of allergies, then antihistamines are your best bet to treat the headache.
What to Do for Sinus Headache Relief
If the pain lasts longer than 24 hours, and the mucus is yellow or green in color, you should see a doctor. Sometimes viruses in the sinuses can spread to other areas, or can be a symptom of an underlying issue. If your sinus headache is accompanied by numbness, tingling, stiff neck, or nausea and vomiting, then you need to see a doctor for treatment for sinus headache. Doctors can prescribe antibiotics to attack the virus, or they can give you stronger antihistamines for your allergies.
Sinus headaches can be very painful and irritating to the sufferer. It’s important to figure out what is causing the sinuses to swell so you can choose the appropriate 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 sinus headache and recommend the best route for treatment.
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Article reference: (1) https://www.merriam-webster.com/medical/nasal%20cavity