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  • Writer's pictureDr. Koralla Raja Meghanadh

Sinusitis Prevention: Avoid Recurrent Infections

Updated: May 15


Prevention of Sinus Infection is better and more straightforward than the cure. To know how to prevent sinusitis, we must first understand the causes of sinus infection.

Sinusitis typically occurs in individuals who have one or more of the following underlying factors:

  • Allergies

  • Anomalies in the sinus drainage pathway

  • A weaker natural immunity to bacteria

To know more about how these factors cause sinusitis. You can read our article on "What causes sinusitis infection?".


Sinusitis can be caused by an infection that affects the nose and surrounding structures, often arising from a superficial viral infection like the common cold.

Prevention of Sinus Infections Sinusitis

Although we cannot fix the abnormalities in sinus drainage pathways without surgical intervention, we can deal with the other factors. So here we have a guide on preventing sinusitis.


How to deal with allergies?

Allergies are common, affecting 20 to 30% of the Indian population. However, many people don't realize they have allergies, with one-third of affected individuals remaining unaware.

How to identify allergies?

Allergies can cause sneezing, nasal discharge, and sudden nose blockages after exposure to triggers like pollen, dust mites, and occasionally food. Another third of people may experience mild nose blockages, throat itching, dry cough, and recurring colds that they mistake for seasonal changes. These individuals may not realize they have allergies. They may be at risk of developing sinusitis and asthma due to untreated allergies.


Avoid irritants and allergens

Avoid irritants and allergens that can trigger allergies. This includes cigarette smoke, air pollution, and strong odors from cleaning products or perfumes. If you have allergies, managing them effectively with medication or allergy shots is essential.


Consider using a HEPA air filter in your home to reduce the amount of allergens in the air. By avoiding these allergens, you can help keep your allergies under control and avoid the trigger.


Anti-allergic medication

Treatment for allergies typically involves safe, prescribed anti-allergic medication over 10 to 12 years, yet many go untreated. Get the prescription from a doctor.


Treating Common Cold

Most sinus infections start as a simple viral common cold left untreated. While this primary infection can be easily treated, many individuals ignore their symptoms and fail to seek medical treatment or use home remedies, assuming the illness will resolve within a week. However, a common cold can cause complications like sinusitis and middle ear infections when left untreated.


While it may not always be possible to resolve a common cold, treating it at home can help prevent complications such as sinusitis and middle ear infections.

We can take simple steps to treat the common cold and keep it under control to avoid complications:

  1. Using nasal decongestant drops like xylometazoline and oxymetazoline can help reduce the swelling of the mucus lining in the nose. This lining continues into the sinuses thereby reducing swelling in the sinuses if it exists. However, using these drops judiciously and for up to 7 days a month is essential to avoid dependence and rebound worsening of the block.

  2. Perform steam inhalation for 5 minutes three times a day without a blanket.

  3. Antivirals - Antivirals are a type of medication that can help control the growth of viruses in your body. Antivirals can help control the infection and decrease the virus's chance of spreading to others. These medications target specific virus components, preventing them from replicating and spreading. A doctor must prescribe this antiviral medication.

So, irrespective of the underlying factors mentioned above, it is always better to use steam inhalation and nose drops for the common cold as it will prevent sinusitis and otitis media, a middle ear infection.


Maintain your immunity

Suppose your immune system is weak from birth. In that case, you may be more vulnerable to bacterial infections. A superficial viral infection like the common cold can trigger a bacterial infection in your sinuses. This makes you more susceptible to various diseases. Taking steps to boost your immune system and prevent conditions and illnesses is essential.


Here are steps that will help you boost your immunity.

  1. Adequate sleep

  2. Proper hydration

  3. Balanced diet

  4. Using spices wisely to enhance your immunity


Adequate sleep

Maintaining adequate sleep is crucial for maintaining a robust immune system. Both insufficient and excess sleep can negatively impact our body's ability to fight off infections. Establishing and adhering to a consistent sleep schedule can help ensure that we get the recommended amount of sleep each night, which can help keep our immune system functioning at its best.

Proper Hydration

Proper hydration can not only keep your immunity high, but the mucus in the sinuses can get thicker, leading to stagnation in the sinuses, which can result in sinusitis. Keeping your body adequately hydrated will keep the mucus thinner. But, excess hydration, in the long run, can result in heart and kidney diseases.

Click this link to know "How much water should you drink daily?".


Balanced Diet

A well-balanced diet that includes adequate protein, carbohydrates, fiber, and essential vitamins is crucial for maintaining a healthy body. Consistently following a balanced diet can help strengthen our immune system and promote overall wellness.

By promoting a healthy immune system, a balanced diet can help prevent common colds and even assist the body in managing sinusitis when it does occur, potentially reducing the need for medication.

Spices to boost immunity

Spices contain micronutrients that can't be replenished with supplements alone. Incorporating these spices into our diets can enhance our health, but it's crucial to remember that their benefits aren't dependent on the quantity consumed. In fact, consuming high amounts of spices can result in gastritis. Instead, using them smartly is critical.


Black pepper contains piperine, a substance that enhances the absorption of these nutrients, particularly when paired with turmeric. Adding a small pinch of piperine and turmeric to your dishes can improve your immunity. People who regularly eat cuisines like Indian, which commonly utilize spices, can add a bit of black pepper to their dishes to reap the benefits. It's not necessary to add tablespoons of pepper for taste. Just a pinch as an activator will suffice.


Here's a fun fact: many immunity-boosting supplements on the market contain turmeric as a key ingredient. If you look closely at the ingredient list, you'll notice that piperine, extracted from black pepper, is also added. This is because piperine can enhance the absorption of the beneficial compounds in turmeric, helping to maximize its immune-boosting effects.



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