The primary goal when treating sinusitis is to decrease the inflammation in the nose and sinus openings to improve sinus drainage. Colds and allergy attacks can lead to an attack of sinusitis. To keep that from happening, keep your sinuses clear by blowing your nose, using decongestants, and drinking lots of fluids. For people with allergies, avoiding allergens can help prevent not only the allergy symptoms but also sinusitis.
A saltwater or saline nasal wash is an important treatment for sinusitis. It helps remove mucus and bacteria from the nose and sinuses. This can temporarily reduce symptoms of nasal congestion and postnasal drip. We often recommend doing a nasal wash before using a steroid nasal spray. The steroid nasal spray helps decrease inflammation so the sinuses can drain. After doing a nasal wash, wait until the draining stops; then use your steroid nasal spray as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Nasal saline wash of the nose can be one of the most helpful treatments for both acute and chronic sinus problems.
This may include a combination of medical treatments. In addition to the nasal wash and nasal steroid medication, your healthcare provider will treat an infection, if present, and try to reduce the symptoms of a runny or congested nose. Learn about sinusitis medications.
Surgery, or other invasive treatments, should only be considered when medical therapies have failed to improve the patient's symptoms and quality of life. Learn about surgical treatments.