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Simply put, sinusitis is inflammation of the lining of your sinuses.
The sinuses are located behind the eyes, the cheeks, and the jaw. They are
chambers in which mucous is produced to clean out the bacteria
that we take in every day through the mouth and nose. The mucous
moves along the cilia, which are tiny, moving hairs that
maneuver the mucous. Sinusitis creates difficulties for the
sinuses as they try to do their job, because the cilia cease to
move and the sinuses either produce too much mucous or too
Sinusitis can be caused in a variety of ways. The inflammation of the sinus
lining is sensitive to changes in temperature or humidity, and
often swimming, diving, extreme changes in temperature, and
smoking will set off inflammation. The reason these things can
cause sinusitis is that they create a friendly environment for
bacteria and viruses.
For example, smoking paralyzes the cilia, causing the sinuses to think that
there are bacteria or a virus and to produce more mucous. Since
the cilia cannot move, the mucous just sits there, congests, and
becomes a breeding ground for more bacteria, creating a sinus
infection. Stagnant water or liquid buildup from water
activities can produce similar effects. Or, if a virus has
already infected the sinuses and swelling occurs, then the
produced mucous will build up even more. Sinusitis is just the
beginning of any nasal problem.
What many people don’t know is that sinusitis, though beginning in the
sinuses can also contribute to an ear infection. The reason is
that the sinuses and the ears are connected through the
Eustachian tube, and something as simple as sneezing can push
infection right out to the ears. Not only can infection move out
to the ears but also down to the lungs. Sinusitis is not
entirely unrelated to an upper respiratory infection. Often
Sinusitis, ear infection, and upper respiratory infection have
similar, if not the same, causes.
As mentioned in previous articles, the culprit is often post nasal drip.
Post nasal drip is often part of a cold or flu symptom. It is a
sensation of mucous dripping in the back of your throat.
Frequent sniffing and swallowing should be indications of
proactive sinuses. In other words, sinuses are producing more
mucous because they sense bacteria or a virus. Sinusitis and
sinus infection do frequently occur in the wake of a cold or the
Prevention is the best way to stay out of the way of sinusitis. Many of the
preventions are also treatments. For example, Xylitol, a natural
enemy to bacteria, is a time-tested prevention for sinusitis.
Xylitol is now being used as the leading ingredient in nasal
spray. The regular rinsing of the sinuses is generally helpful
in keeping bacteria from settling and mucous from getting
About the author:
Joe Miller is an author of informational articles and
online advertisement on health. Information on
Sinusitis prevention and
Xylitol is available at