When I was a young doctor and just out of training, I developed a toothache. After a few days of not getting better, I went to my dentist. I assumed, best case, that I’d need a filling. I’d only had one filling before and wasn’t exactly looking forward to another one, but I had to do something for the pain.
Well, after the dentist did a thorough exam and X-rayed the area, he told me my teeth were perfectly fine. I couldn’t believe it. He then, as tactfully as he could, suggested that perhaps I had a sinus infection. This took me by surprise. My tooth hurt, not my sinuses.
Well, after over a week of pain, I swallowed my pride and started on antibiotics. In about three days, the pain was gone. Oh, it’s come back since, but not in a long time. Because since that time, I’ve come up with some sinus infection remedies—things I can do to prevent an infection or stop it in its tracks when I feel it coming on.
But now, when anyone comes into the office and says they have a toothache, if their teeth and gums look okay, I suggest the pain might be coming from their sinuses. They usually look as surprised as I once was.
Antibiotics Not Always the Cure
Like ear infections, most sinus infections are caused by viruses, and antibiotics don’t help. Some are caused by bacteria, but many of these even go away on their own. A sinus infection (or “sinusitis”) can also be caused by a fungus, but this is pretty uncommon, and again, it may go away on its own.
Often, whatever the cause, your odds for successful resolution can be the sinus infection remedies I mention in this article. That’s especially good to know if you ever get in a situation where getting to a doctor is next to impossible.
Original illustration by Patrick J. Lynch, medical illustrator. This derivative work by M. Komorniczak [Creative Commons 3.0. Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA 3.0); more usage information here].