Sinus infections, which are also known as sinusitis, are divided into two categories - acute and chronic. Acute sinus infections are known to be caused by a sudden bout of bacterial infection, present in the respiratory tract of a person. Quite a few people and a large percentage of children are susceptible to sinus infections that are caused by a viral infection. These cases are not too severe and quite easy to deal with. They either go away in a short duration of a few weeks or they can be cured with the help of a mild dose of antibiotics.
On the other hand, chronic sinus infections are repetitive attacks that plague a person many times in a year. Studies have shown that over 35 million Americans suffer from this condition. Chronic attacks have the ability to last up to 3 months at a time and can recur repeatedly. The chronic attacks can be caused by allergens, dust or any other nasal irritants. As sinus infections are mainly caused due to the inflammation of the nasal passage, thus any irritant can cause a sudden onset of the infection.
Both, acute and chronic infections, varying only in the duration of the infection, share the same symptoms. The symptoms seen in people affected by this condition are cough, pain in the face, dental pain, bad breath, stuffy eyes, blocked nose, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, headaches and fever in some severe cases.
Though sinusitis is not a potentially life threatening disease, if left unattended, it can lead to a number of problems that could be quite problematic. In severe cases it can cause the death of the individual as well. This is due to the close proximity of the sinuses to various vital organs of the body, such as the eyes and the brain. The spread of the infection into these organs could lead to severe complications. Some of the possible complications are mentioned below.
Most people who consider sinus infections to only be runny nose and occasional fevers, do not realize that sinus infections can lead to a serious case of the infection spreading to the frontal bone, which is termed as Osteomyelitis.
The infection of the ethmoid sinus can easily spread out into the eye socket which could lead to partial or complete blindness. There could even be a case of clotting of blood which could affect the pupils in both the eyes, leading to vision problems.
The proximity of the brain to the sinuses is another worrying factor, as infection of the brain can lead to personality changes and in worst cases, even death.
To avoid such severe complications, it is advised to address your sinus infections as early as possible. Consult your doctor for advice or apply the sinus home remedies which are extremely effective.