When the seasons begin to transition from winter to spring, millions of people suffer from seasonal allergies. Many others are less fortunate, and experience allergies year-round, due to a variety of irritants such as mold, food, dander, and dust. As an allergy sufferer, you may have “tried and true” remedies to help you get through a day of congestion, watery eyes, and sneezing, but if your allergies fail to improve, it may be time to visit your doctor. Ask yourself if it’s sinus allergies, or something else?
Sinus allergies or something else?
According to a survey conducted by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, more than 300 asthma, and allergy patients, had self-diagnosed their symptoms as sinus allergies, when they really had a sinus infection. While individuals, who self-diagnose, have no medical background, medical professionals are also prone to misdiagnosing your symptoms. A delayed medical diagnosis can lead to more complicated health issues. It’s important to visit your doctor as soon as symptoms arrive.
Is it Just Allergies?
When you have an allergy, an allergic reaction begins in the immune system. According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology (AAAI), your symptoms may vary depending on the type of allergy you have (or how severe it is). For instance, some people have a slight allergy to animal dander or pollen, which is accompanied by itchy, watery eyes, and some sneezing. However, some individuals have more severe reactions to the same kind of allergens, and may suffer from asthma. Even more severe? A person can experience anaphylaxis, a life-threatening reaction.
If you’re experiencing any allergy symptoms, even minor ones, it’s a good idea to visit your doctor. If he, or she, suspects something more serious, and non-seasonal, it’s likely you’ll be referred to an allergist, or immunologist.
When It’s More Than Allergies
If your allergy symptoms fail to let up, or are accompanied with new symptoms, you’ve never had before, such as nasal cavity pain, or extreme headaches, you may have a sinus infection. If you’ve ever suffered from a sinus infection, you know when another one has arrived. It feels like a cold gone bad, real bad. The pain in your forehead, in your jaws, between your eyes, and even in your teeth, can be accompanied with congestion, sore throat, a cough, and a rather unpleasant discharge from your nose. If treated early, and properly, your symptoms may subside within days, or weeks.
If Your Symptoms Won’t Let Up
When you’ve been diagnosed with a sinus infection, it may take a bit of time to recover. If your symptoms persist, you may have been misdiagnosed. You should return to the doctor right away. If you fail to follow-up on lingering symptoms, your so-called sinus infection can lead to complications.
Although rare, sinus infection complications can spread to the eyes, or brain. When the infection spreads to the eyes, some patients can experience swelling around the eyes, reduced vision, and even blindness. If the infection spreads to the brain, life-threatening conditions like meningitis, or a brain abscess, may occur.
Don’t ignore the first signs of allergies, it’s better to be overly cautious. It’s better to be cautious, rather than suffer from an infection that can have life-changing results.
Author Bio: Matt Rhoney is an avid reader on trending topics, and a writer in his spare time. He enjoys writing pieces on health, fitness, and wellness, but often writes about family, and safety.