Sinusitis and Allergy
The symptoms of sinusitis and allergies are very similar. The main symptom is a stuffy nose. However, the symptoms occur for different reasons.
If you have allergies, your sinuses become stuffy because they are trying to flush out allergens. Dr. Monica Tadros specializes in sinusitis and allergy in her Center for Facial Plastic Surgery in NJ & NYC to restructure the sinuses and help patients with allergy problems.
Sinusitis occurs when there is an infection in the sinuses. Air should flow through your nose. When your nose is stuffy, it is more prone to infection because bacteria can get caught in the mucus in your nose.
Stuffy nose can occur because of an allergy, a cold, or a deviated septum.
Both are incredibly uncomfortable conditions, but to determine what type of treatment you need it is important to get a correct diagnosis. Our plastic surgeon in NY and NJ can quickly diagnose the cause of your discomfort. Dr. Monica Tadros always spends enough time painstakingly assessing every patient. Only then can she determine whether sinus surgery is an option.
How Common is Sinusitis?
Sinusitis is a common condition. About 35 million Americans have sinusitis every year.
The symptoms of allergies and sinusitis can be similar. But if you pay close attention, you can notice the subtle differences.
Symptoms of allergies include:
- Itchy eyes
- Runny nose
- Itchy throat
Tree pollen allergy symptoms normally occur during March and June. According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology (ACAAI), 40% of children and 30% of adults suffer from pollen allergies.
Symptoms of sinusitis include:
- Stuffy or runny nose
- Loss of smell
- A feeling of congestion in the face
What is the Difference Between Allergies and Sinusitis?
If you have allergies, you usually feel the symptoms right after coming into contact with the allergen.
If you have sinusitis, you feel the symptoms after a cold or allergic reaction. After the cold goes away, symptoms of sinusitis remain.
Acute vs. Chronic Sinusitis
If your symptoms go away after 4 weeks, you have acute sinusitis. If they last longer than 4 months, you have chronic sinusitis.
How Do You Treat Allergies?
Allergy treatment can start from medications. If you have allergies you can try taking an antihistamine or a corticosteroid. If you have chronic allergies your doctor may recommend allergy shots. This is a process in which allergens are injected into your body slowly to help build up a tolerance. It is similar to getting a vaccine. In case you suffer from spring allergies, Dr. Tadros will prepare a personalized treatment plan for you.
How Do You Treat Sinusitis?
For sinusitis, you can also use antihistamines. You can also try nasal spray, but don’t use it for more than 3-4 days because your body develops a tolerance to it. If conservative treatment were to no avail, balloon sinuplasty surgery might be an option for those suffering from sinusitis.