Noticed that your kid is sneezing more than usual or having a stuffy nose or even watery eyes? In such cases, you might wonder to yourself whether it is a sinus infection or a cold. For starters, how long those symptoms last may be a clue to what’s really causing their congestion. Read on to find out more on how to differentiate between sinusitis and the common cold.
What is a Sinus Infection?
When a sinus infection occurs, oftentimes the individual’s nasal passages are infected as well. Compared to a cold, sinus is harder to get rid of. Allergies, bacteria and even viruses are the culprits that can lead to sinus infections. Although colds do not usually directly cause sinus infections, they offer a breeding ground for them. People tend to touch their noses a lot when they are sick. Each time they touch, they bring more bacteria to the sinuses. That’s why it’s hard for one’s sinuses to drain. The bacteria simply stay there and grow.
Sinus symptoms include:
- Thick green/yellow mucus draining down the back of your throat or from one’s nose
- Bad breath
- Decreased sense of smell
- Headaches (can worsen)
- Runny and stuffy nose (may last more than a week)
- Sinus pressure experienced behind the cheeks and the eyes
How to Treat Your Kid’s Sinus Infection
If you think your child has a sinus infection, he or she may need to see the doctor to receive proper treatment. Most acute infections tend to go away on their own after a round of antibiotics. Also, sinus irrigation is highly recommended for sinus infections. The procedure helps ease your child’s symptoms while the antibiotics are taking effect. Other things that can ease your child’s discomfort include over-the-counter mucus thinners, decongestants and steroids. If your kid’s sinus infection does not go away after one or two courses of antibiotics, it’s pertinent that they see an ear, nose, and throat specialist pronto.
What is a Common Cold?
Realized that you are always staying close to a tissue box for several days at a go? It clearly shows that you got hit by a cold virus. More often than not, colds tend to get better on their own within ten days or less. Meanwhile, your kid needs plenty of rest as colds can bring on an unpleasant mix of symptoms that can wear them down.
Cold symptoms include:
- Fever (children can experience higher fever)
- Swollen sinuses
- Frequent sneezing
- Mucus buildup
- Stuffy nose
- Sore throat
How to Treat Your Kid’s Cold
In the case of common colds, antibiotics won’t help. Over-the-counter medications, however, can make your child feel better. From getting plenty of fluids and rest, your child should also opt for remedies that are targeted at specific symptoms. For example, at the congestion or the headache. If your child is having a hard time staying asleep at night because they can’t really breathe through their nose, sinus irrigation may become necessary. The procedure will help thin mucus and flush out their sinuses with a mixture of salt and water. This isn’t a myth because people who irrigate when they have a cold usually do better.