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If you have an acute infection (one that lasts less than two weeks), you may be treated with antibiotics, nasal sprays, and decongestants. If you have persistent or recurrent sinus problems, you should be evaluated in our office. The inflammation from recurrent sinus infections is often due to the blocking of the sinus openings. If the openings are blocked, a similar feeling of pressure may result without an infection.

Sinus Medications

Antibiotics may be used if you have a bacterial sinus infection, and there are many types available. Sometimes you may require multiple antibiotics to resolve the infection. If you are given antibiotics month after month and year after year, then you need a formal evaluation of the cause of your recurrent sinus problems.

Nasal sprays may also help with your sinusitis. Corticosteroid sprays such as Nasonex™, Flonase™, Veramyst™, and the like may be used daily to reduce swelling in the nose and improve symptoms. These sprays must be used daily to be effective. Antihistamine sprays may also help with allergy.

Oral decongestants may be sold over-the-counter or by prescription. The primary ingredient is pseudoephedrine, which is the main ingredient in Sudafed. This medication is helpful with nasal congestion,facial pain, and facial pressure. It is often combined with antihistamines and is given the suffix "D" such as Claririn-D™, Allegra-D™, etc. Decongestants should not be taken by patients with anxiety, urinary retention, high blood pressure, or heart problems.

Have Medications Stopped Working?

Hands full of pills

For some sufferers, medical therapy may fail or provide only temporary relief. This may be due to an underflying physical blockage or narrowing that drugs can't address. Patients often become stuck in a cycle of repeated rounds of antibiotics, steroids, and other medications. This can lead to antibiotic resistance or problems with steroid use. When medical therapy is not working, other treatment options can include balloon sinus dilation.