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EAR, NOSE AND THROAT

Sinusitis

Sinusitis is an infection of the sinus membranes causing congestion, facial pressure, headaches, yellow or green nasal discharge, and exhaustion. Nearly every sinus infection starts with a viral infection. Under the right conditions, the invasion of the virus into the normal population of microorganisms living in the sinuses (bacteria, yeast, etc) can cause one population to overgrow the others. A viral infection (or cold) can be differentiated from a sinus infection (which is bacterial) by time.  A virus clears in 5-7 days. A bacterial infection lasts much longer, sometimes even months. 

 

Chronic Sinusitis

If you have repeated bouts of sinus infections and take several courses of antibiotics, the healthy bacteria in your gut and sinuses are also killed. This allows the normal population of yeast in your body to grow, leading to more sinus inflammation and repeated sinus infections, ironically making you more and more sick each time you take antibiotics. Yeast overgrowth can lead to allergic fungal sinusitis, which is a serious condition requiring sinus surgery and chronic steroid treatments. 

Sinusitis Treatment:

Many over-the-counter medications help treat colds or early sinus infections by drying up secretions and decreasing mucosal swelling. This makes the lining inhospitable to the overgrowth of bacteria so the infection can be controlled early on. For more severe cases, prescription medications such as antibiotics and steroids may be required to help open up the nasal passages. (hyperlink to section on allergic rhinitis treatments)

If you are suffering from chronic sinusitis, detoxification through cleanses and herbal supplements to improve your immune function and clear yeast are very effective. Each course of antibiotics requires at least two months of probiotic use.

 

If all else fails, surgery may be an option to clear anatomic blockage and remove inflamed nasal and sinus tissue.

Allergic rhinitis: See Allergic Rhinitis section (hyperlink)

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