Patients seeking sinus headache treatment often want nothing more than to relieve the pressure in their nasal passages that is causing pain. Sinus headaches usually appear when you are sick or have a cold. While there is no cure for the common cold, Armor Physical Therapy explains how you can identify and treat sinus headaches.
How do I recognize a sinus headache?
Sinus headaches are caused by inflammation in the nasal passages. The inflammation constricts your sinuses which is why the pain can feel like a building pressure in your face or forehead. They are most commonly caused by colds and allergies.
When you are sick, the bacteria in your mucus can cause inflammation in your sinuses. Getting rid of this excess mucus when we blow our noses can further irritate your nasal passages. This can create a feedback loop that builds congestion and pressure that causes a sinus headache, which means blowing your nose is a poor option for sinus headache treatment. Pain is usually centered in the front of the face or forehead.
How can I treat sinus headaches myself?
Fortunately, there are several effective sinus headache treatments you can do yourself including:
- Neti pot or saline wash — A warm saline solution flushed through the nasal passages can work wonders. It is more effective than blowing your nose and does not cause further inflammation of the sinus cavity.
- Decongestants — A nasal decongestant medication can also help with clearing out your sinuses. Be careful as some nasal decongestants can raise blood pressure. Check with your doctor if you are unsure about taking a decongestant.
- Eat spicy foods — If you have ever taken too large of a bite of horseradish or hot mustard, then you have probably felt how quickly it can clear your sinuses. That can be attributed to the capsaicin found in chiles and other spicy foods. For those that like the heat, eating spicy foods can be an effective sinus headache treatment.
Can physical therapy help with chronic sinus headaches?
Most sinus headaches go away on their own, but if you experience chronic or recurring headaches, physical therapy can be an effective sinus headache treatment option. The physical therapist will perform an evaluation to determine the cause of the problem and work with you to create an individualized treatment plan. Contact us today to set up your initial appointment.