Pediatric sinusitis is relatively common bacterial infection that causes inflammation of the sinus cavities, making it difficult to breathe. Approximately 5-13% of all upper respiratory tract infections are complicated by bacterial sinusitis. But infections are not the only cause of sinusitis, especially when the sinusitis recurs frequently or is chronic. Allergies—often undiagnosed—are a leading cause of sinusitis, particularly in children. We use new blood testing technology to discover, and then treat, the cause.
Kids and sinusitis
Kids have small nasal passages that can easily get blocked by congestion and inflammation, creating a hotbed for bacterial growth. This is the most common cause of sinusitis. In children, anatomical issues like a deviated septum are less likely to be the cause than in adults.
Children don’t always have the same classic facial pain symptom as adults. Instead, they may have bad odor on their breath, headaches or get lethargic. They also are more prone to getting fluid in their ears or otitis media.
Signs & symptoms
- Nasal congestion
- Facial pain
- Night-time coughing
- An increase in previously minor or controlled asthma symptoms
- General malaise
- Thick green or yellow discharge
- Feeling of facial ‘fullness’ or ‘tightness’ which may worsen on bending over
- Aching teeth, and/or halitosis
What you can do
One of the best ways to prevent sinusitis is to keep nasal passages open and not inflamed. Reducing allergic triggers, which can cause inflammation, is important. If your child has acute sinusitis, try to drain the sinuses with nasal cortisone sprays, which are very safe (they only contain a tiny amount of cortisone, similar to the level in cortisone creams, which stay localized to the nasal passages). Also give your child a lot of fluids to hydrate her and help thin mucus secretions. And if she’ll let you, use saline nasal sprays or a Neti pot to drain the sinuses. Have your child tested for allergies.
To get more information or to get tested, contact us today.