Preventing Sinus-Related Breathing Problems At An Early Age – Breathing problems are common in both adults and children but are more common and fatal in children. Breathing problems make it difficult to breathe through the nose and make it hard to continue with your daily chores.
There are many causes of breathing problems, but one of the major ones is problems with the sinus. Many sinus problems could cause congested, inflamed, or restricted nasal passages that make it hard to breathe.
One of the main sinus problems that are related to breathing problems is a sinus infection. Sinuses are hollow and air-filled cavities near the nose lined with mucous membranes. We all have four sinuses;
- The ethmoid sinus is found at the bridge of the nose.
- Maxillary sinus found around the cheeks.
- Frontal sinus found around the forehead.
- Sphenoid sinus found behind the nose.
The sinuses help insulate surrounding areas like the nerves and eyes, warming and humidifying the air, buffering against facial trauma, and increasing choice resonance.
However, if the sinus becomes inflamed, it could cause a sinus infection, also called sinusitis. The inflammation could result from a virus, bacteria, fungi, or autoimmune reaction. The infection could also result from an allergy or chemical irritation to the sinus.
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Types Of Sinusitis
- Acute- This type of infection lasts for at most 122 weeks, and the symptoms improve after getting the right treatment.
- Chronic- The infection symptoms go on for more than two weeks.
- Recurrent- This type of sinusitis keeps recurring even after medication, and a patient could have three or more acute sinusitis a year.
Symptoms Of Sinusitis
The symptoms mostly depend on how long the infection has been active and the cause of the infection. However, some of the main symptoms include;
- Soreness or pan over sinuses
- Loss of smell and taste
- Postnasal drip, drainage down the back of the throat
- Thick and colored, mostly green or yellow, drainage in the nose
- Sore throat
- Stuffy or runny nose
- Swelling and tenderness around the nose, cheeks, eyes, and forehead.
- Facial pressure or pain.
The signs of sinusitis in children could appear like those of any other health issue, and you must visit the doctor for a diagnosis.
Children At The Risk Of Getting Sinusitis
Sinusitis mainly happens after a common cold or an infection in the upper respiratory parts. These problems result in a swelling that might block the sinuses’ opening, causing the infection. Allergies also cause a sinus infection because they increase the amount of mucus and cause swelling.
However, other factors that could increase the chances of a child getting a sinus infection include;
- An abnormally shaped nose
- Nose injury
- Infection from a tooth
- Having foreign objects in the nose
- A birth defect that causes abnormality to the mouth’s roof (cleft palate)
How To Diagnose A Sinus Infection In Children
When you take your child to the doctor, the doctor considers their health history and symptoms to determine the type of sinusitis they are suffering from. The methods they use to diagnose include;
- Cultures from the sinus- This is a swab of discharge from your child’s nose to test for bacteria or viruses.
- Sinuses CT scan- This scan helps give the doctor a detailed image of the sinuses to see the extent of the inflammation.
- Sinus X-ray- This helps show the condition of the sinuses.
How To Prevent Sinus-Related Breathing Problems In Children
It is possible to prevent sinus infection and eliminate the link between sinus and breathing problems from an early age. Some of the things that you can do include;
- Surgery- If your child has an abnormally shaped nose, birth defect, or suffered a nose injury that could be increasing their chances of getting a sinus infection, the best thing to do is get surgery to correct the problem.
Also, if your child suffers from chronic sinusitis, they could undergo surgery to open up their blocked sinuses.
- Always have a humidifier in dry indoor spaces.
- Use saline washes, sprays, or both on your children.
- Keep your child away from anything that causes an allergic reaction.
- Keep your child away from smoke, especially cigarette smoke.
- Limit the time your child spends in chlorinated pools because they irritate the sinuses.
- Get your child immunized.
- Practice good oral hygiene.
- Keep your child away from people who have colds.
- Don’t let your child get anything in their nose.
How To Treat Sinus-Related Breathing Problems
If you realize that your child has breathing problems because of a sinus infection, some of the methods to treat that include;
- Surgery- This helps chronic sinusitis caused by structural problems of the nose.
- Antibiotics- Helps a sinus infection caused by bacteria.
- Allergy medicine- These medications help your child have a lower reaction to allergens like dust, pollen, and mold.
- Inhaled corticosteroid medicineENT specialist visit- The specialist can detect the type of sinus infection and the cause, which helps give a perfect way to prevent the infection from happening in the future.
- Other medications- If the sinus infection is not caused by bacteria, antibiotics will not help relieve the infection or breathing problems. Therefore, the doctor must determine if it is caused by a virus or fungi and prescribe other medications.
These methods depend on the type of sinus infection that they have. You can also try giving them fluid often, saline wash to ensure the nose and sinuses remain moist, and a warm compress against the nose, cheeks, and eyes.
You do not have to wait until your child is older for you to try and get rid of the sinus problem causing their breathing problems. You can do that when they are still young, which saves you the time and money.
Also Read: Why Do Teeth Get Loose In The First Place?