Pressure build-up in the paranasal sinuses (the sinuses around the eyes, nose and cheeks) is the cause of sinus headache. A sinus pressure headache is similar to a tension headache. However, sinus headaches do not originate from the shoulders or the neck. Sinus headache pain is concentrated in the face or the anterior (front) part of the head. Sinus headaches also cause facial tenderness.
Causes of Sinus Headaches
Congestion of the sinuses is the cause of sinus headaches. The sinuses produce mucus which drains out to the nose. When the sinuses are congested, the mucus can’t drain out. Pressure builds up within the sinuses, and this causes the sinus headache symptoms.
Congestion of the sinuses is a symptom of various ailments. The common cold, allergies and sinusitis are the three most common causes of sinus congestion and sinus headaches. The common cold is a viral infection of the upper respiratory system. Allergies are hypersensitivity (allergy) to certain substances like dust or pollen. Sinusitis is inflammation of the sinuses.
Sinusitis can be acute or chronic. Acute sinusitis is a temporary condition. Upper respiratory infections and allergic reactions are its usual triggers. Chronic sinusitis is a recurrent condition. Rhinitis, persistent allergies or anatomic abnormalities in the nose and sinuses are predisposing factors of chronic sinusitis. Both acute sinusitis and chronic sinusitis cause sinus headaches.
Sinus Headache Symptoms
Deep, dull and throbbing pain is one of the sinus headache symptoms. The pain caused by a sinus headache is most intense in the morning after waking up. The intensity of pain usually decreases as the day goes by. However, lying down or suddenly moving the head worsens the pain.
There are sinuses in the forehead, between the eyes and nose, the cheeks, and the base of the skull. Sinus headache causes pain around the area of the congested sinuses. Inflammation of the sinuses in the cheekbones causes pain in the cheeks. Inflammation of the frontal sinuses causes pain in the forehead.
Facial tenderness is another symptom of sinus headaches. The area above and around the infected or inflamed sinuses is usually sore to the touch. Sinus headache symptoms also include nasal discharge, sore throat, fever, exhaustion, and general listlessness.
Symptoms of sinus headaches are often confused with the symptoms of other types of headaches, and vice versa. Migraine headache symptoms, for instance, are often confused with sinus headache symptoms. For correct sinus headache treatment, tell your physician about your medical history and describe your symptoms in detail.
Sinus Headache Relief
Pain relievers bring sinus headache relief. Common sinus headache remedies also include decongestants, corticosteroids and antihistamines. Some people use humidifiers, saline nasal drops and saline nasal sprays.
Treating the root cause of the sinus headache is still the most effective sinus headache remedy, however. Use antibiotics to treat sinus headaches caused by bacterial infection. Sinus headaches caused by physiological abnormalities in the nose and sinuses may be treated with surgery.
Sinus headache relief medications bring only temporary sinus headache relief. They are also largely ineffective against severe sinus headaches.
If you frequently suffer from sinus headache symptoms, consult your doctor to get your condition diagnosed and your sinus headaches treated. You can gain long-lasting relief from chronic sinus headaches only by resolving their root cause.
Always consult with your doctor or a certified professional trainer before undertaking any exercises, treatments, or dietary supplements.