Sinus Infection Help
 

Sinus Infection During Pregnancy

Sinus infection during pregnancy is more common than previously thought.

Studies have shown that approximately 35% of pregnant women suffer from nasal problems. This is caused by possible hormonal changes during pregnancy.So, many women experience a clogged up stuffy nose. Other symptoms such as sneezing and coughing are common as well.

This condition is termed as pregnancy rhinitis. While allergic rhinitis is caused by allergens that have entered our body, pregnancy rhinitis will exhibit very similar symptoms.

Usually pregnancy rhinitis occurs during the first trimester but there are exceptions and usually lasts for at least six weeks.

When a woman suffers from nasal congestion brought about by allergy rhinitis and which does not go away quickly enough, it will lead to sinus infection during pregnancy.

How does sinus infection occur?

The inside of our nasal passages and sinus cavities are lined with soft, tissue-like membrane called the mucosa. The mucosa constantly produces thin and slightly sticky mucus. This mucus helps the body to trap allergens that we breathe in such as pollens, dust mites, bacteria and viruses which are harmful.

The cilia, which are tiny microscopic hair-like protrusions on the mucosa, sweep this nasal mucus from the sinus cavities into the nasopharynx and then swallowed unconciously by us.

When pregnancy rhinitis occurs, the mucosa becomes inflamed and they produce abnormal amounts of nasal mucus. Such mucus tends to be thick, sticky and opaque. The swollen mucosa then causes nasal congestion, especially if the inferior turbinates are exceptionally large.

The natural ventilation within the nasal passages becomes inhibited. This allows the and bacteria residing in the sinuses to multiply rapidly. A bacterial infection soon develops. Sinus infection mucus is usually thick, sticky and colored yellow or green.

Sinus infection will affect the quality of life as it causes symptoms like difficulty in breathing through the nose making it difficulty to have a sound sleep. This makes you feel fatigued and tired the wholeday. Moreover, sinus headaches and sinus infection dizziness can make you extremely miserable.

Sinus Infection Treatment During Pregnancy

In pregnancy, the safety profile of drugs is the main determinant of whether they should be used. The American FDA has advised that foetal damage could not be totally excluded with most of the anti-rhinitis drugs. You need to be aware that the usual sinus infection medications commonly prescribed by doctors may not be suitable for you. So, it would seem that sinus infection home remedies should be adopted where possible in place of drugs.

1. Sinus or nasal Irrigation: This is a simple process whereby saline solution is allowed to pass through one nostril and then out the next. A plastic syringe or a neti pot may be needed to do this effectively.

2. Antihistamines: As mentioned earlier, the general advice is to play it safe. No active form of drug or medication should be taken during pregnancy unless it is either prescribed or recommended by a doctor or it forms a necessary part of treatment for an ongoing medical condition. This holds true during the first trimester when the critical period of foetal development takes place.

It must be noted that nearly all of the antihistamines available are either contraindicated or must be used with special precautions during pregnancy. Antihistamines are therefore best avoided to ensure normal foetal development.

3. Decongestants: Decongestants are very effective against nasal congestion. Short-term use of intranasal decongestants such as oxymetazoline is often useful for nasal congestion that interferes with sleep, but pregnant women should reserve their use until after the first trimester.

Some doctors recommend completely avoiding intranasal decongestants during pregnancy, even after the first trimester.

4. Antibiotics: If you develop a bacterial sinus infection during pregnancy, some antibiotics for sinus infection are safe to take while others are not. The following antibiotics are generally considered safe during pregnancy:

a.Amoxicillin

b.Erythromycin

c.Penicillin

Sinus infection during pregnancy can be tough to deal with. Therefore it is important to take steps to prevent it where possible. Performing nasal irrigation regularly is one of the best ways in maintaining optimum sinus health.

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