Do you suffer from runny nose and congestion? Do you often develop a feeling of fullness and pain in your face? Are your problems sometimes accompanied by a headache or sore throat, coughing or loss of smell? If your answer is 'yes', the reason for these complaints may be sinusitis, which is common in winter!
Sinusitis, an infectious disease characterized by inflammation of the mucosa lining the sinuses, is a disease that can significantly reduce the quality of life. When treatment is delayed, sinus infection spreads, and as a result, many serious conditions can develop, from vision loss to inflammation of the facial bones and from chronic pharyngitis to meningitis. When it is treated in the early period, it is possible to prevent the disease from becoming chronic and relieve the complaints without the need for surgery.
Sinusitis is most common in the winter season. The reason for this is that viral infections are knocking on our door more often this season. Acıbadem Fulya Hospital Otorhinolaryngology Specialist Prof. Dr. Arzu Tatlıpınar, drawing attention to the fact that sinusitis is most often caused by viral infections such as influenza, said, “Due to viral infection, inflammation occurs in the nasal mucosa and the mucosa lining the sinuses. For this reason, the aeration of the sinuses is impaired and bacteria, as well as viruses, can cause secondary infection and can be included in the picture of sinusitis. These patients may complain of facial pain, yellow nasal discharge and nasal discharge. It is important to meticulously apply the methods of protection from upper respiratory tract infections in the winter months, and to be treated promptly if the disease has occurred. Otorhinolaryngology Specialist Prof. Dr. Arzu Tatlıpınar talked about the precautions you should take against sinusitis during the winter months; made important suggestions and warnings!
Make sure to quit smoking
The mucous membranes in the nose and sinuses produce mucus that protects the respiratory system. In addition, there are cilia in the nose and sinuses that sweep airborne particles, bacteria and currents towards the nasal passages. Otorhinolaryngology Specialist Prof. Dr. Arzu Tatlıpınar, warning that cigarettes damage the mucous membrane and cilia structures in the nose and lead to infection, and said, “When the function of the cilia deteriorates, mucus accumulates in the sinuses. Sinusitis occurs when viruses multiply in these mucus. Therefore, you should not smoke and avoid exposure to secondhand smoke as much as possible.
Stay away from allergies
Sinusitis can also develop on the basis of allergies. Due to allergies, edema occurs in the nasal mucosa and sinus mouths, and at the same time, mucus secretion increases. As a result, the drainage of the sinuses is impaired, and the increased mucus creates an environment where viruses and bacteria can multiply. Therefore, in complaints such as sneezing, watering in the eyes and coughing; Consult your physician for the detection of allergic agents. Do not neglect to take the necessary precautions to protect yourself from the allergic factors determined with the allergy test. For example, if there are foods that you have an allergic reaction to, remove them from your daily diet. Minimize materials such as plush toys, long pile carpets and blankets, books and objects that may collect dust in your home and bedroom as much as possible, and keep the existing ones in closed cabinets. It is also important to use an effective vacuum cleaner or air cleaner to remove house dust. In addition to these, you should regularly dust, clean the floor and wash the bedspreads frequently.
Have a regular sleep
A strong immune system has an extremely important role in protecting against sinusitis due to upper respiratory tract infection. One of the most important measures you should take to strengthen your immune system is sleep pattern and quality. prof. Dr. Arzu Tatlıpınar states that the daily sleep time for adults should be 7-9 hours and lists her recommendations as follows: “The most productive sleep hours are between 23.00-03.00. Make sure to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day to ensure sleep patterns. You should not consume caffeinated drinks or eat food before bedtime. If you want to eat and drink something; You can drink warm milk or consume yoghurt due to its relaxing effect. You should lie on the bed in comfortable clothes and ensure that the room is dark. Exercising regularly during the day will also help you get quality sleep.
Pay attention to personal hygiene!
Since viruses and bacteria are the most common causes of sinusitis, do not neglect to pay attention to your personal hygiene and wash your hands frequently. Personal hygiene will prevent disease-causing microbes from infecting your body and spreading to the environment. For proper hand cleaning, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds under running water. Make sure to dry your hands after cleaning, and if possible, use paper towels instead of towels in common areas.
It is very important to be vaccinated!
In winter, we spend more time indoors and stay close to each other. As a result, the risk of respiratory transmission of viruses spread by coughing and sneezing increases. In addition, viruses that cause infection spread more easily in closed spaces that are not frequently ventilated. Otorhinolaryngology Specialist Prof. Dr. Arzu Tatlıpınar, stating that the flu vaccine plays an important role in the prevention of viral infections, says, "Do not neglect to get influenza and Covid-19 vaccines to reduce the risk of sinusitis developing on the basis of viral infection."
Get the right outfit
To protect yourself from sinusitis that may develop as a result of a cold, protect your body temperature by dressing appropriately for seasonal conditions. Using berets, scarves and gloves in cold weather will be helpful in maintaining your body temperature.