Colds are common. Sinus infections are rarer and more serious.
“Common colds typically go away within a few days or a week,” says Matthew B. Schumer, MD, family medicine physician at Saint Francis Medical Center. “If your symptoms linger or worsen after 10 days, you might have a sinus infection.”
The symptoms of a sinus infection, or sinusitis, are similar to those of a cold, but are typically more severe: nasal obstruction; thick yellow or green discharge; headaches and facial pressure; coughing; and fever. If not treated properly with antibiotics and other medications, the infection can last for weeks.
“Anything that blocks your sinuses, from a deviated septum to congestion from a cold, can cause bacteria to grow, which can allow your sinuses to become inflamed and infected,” says Schumer. “If the condition becomes chronic, surgery might be needed to restore proper drainage.”
For more information, visit
www.sfmc.net or call 573-331-3996.