Sinusitis, more commonly known as a sinus infection, affects millions of Americans every year. Since a sinus infection leads to facial pain and serious inflammation of your sinuses, getting started on treatment with Morteza Mirkarimi, MD and the exceptional team at The Doctors Office & Walk-In Clinic in the Clairemont neighborhood of San Diego, California is important. Before your sinus infection worsens any further, book an evaluation through the website or call to schedule by phone. You can also walk in for immediate care during normal business hours.

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What is a sinus infection?

A sinus infection is sometimes mistaken for a common cold. After all, the symptoms — runny nose, fatigue, and nasal congestion — are all similar. But with a sinus infection, the underlying issue may be bacterial, not viral (as with a cold).

When you have a sinus infection, the air-filled cavities within your cheeks, nose, and forehead, become inflamed. While anyone can suffer from a sinus infection, your risk is higher if you:

  • Have allergies (a condition known as allergic fungal sinus infection)
  • Have a weaker immune system, which is common with older adults
  • Smoke cigarettes or are exposed to pollution, fumes, or toxins

Even though it’s rare, a sinus infection can become so severe that if left untreated it can spread to your brain. Because of this, it’s important to have an exam at the first sign of symptoms.

When should I see a doctor for a sinus infection?

It’s important to come to The Doctors Office & Walk-In Clinic early on when a sinus infection starts brewing. Common signs and symptoms of a sinus infection include:

  • Frontal headaches or tooth pain
  • Postnasal drip and runny nose
  • Greenish nasal discharge
  • Nasal or chest congestion
  • Facial tenderness
  • Coughing fits
  • Fever

In some cases, having asthma increases your risk of chronic sinusitis, even though no infection is present. If you have asthma and are experiencing any of these symptoms, immediate medical care from The Doctors Office & Walk-In Clinic is particularly important, since the swelling of your nasal passages can make breathing difficult.

How does a doctor treat a sinus infection?

In most cases, antibiotics are necessary to treat bacterial sinus infections. The doctor prescribes a course of antibiotics that are appropriate for your diagnosis and symptoms. Your sinus infection treatment plan from The Doctors Office & Walk-In Clinicmay also include:

  • Nasal decongestant sprays
  • Antihistamine medications
  • Nasal corticosteroids
  • Nasal saline washes

Acute sinus infections can last as little as 10 days or as long as eight weeks. If you struggle with chronic sinus infections, it may take even longer for your symptoms to resolve. The doctor cares for you along the way and helps you lower your risk of recurrence.

The Doctors Office & Walk-In Clinic provides diagnosis and treatment for sinus infections. Book your evaluation through the website or by phone, or just walk in if you need to be seen right away.