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Sinusitis is an infection of the small spaces in the skull behind the eyes and nose. Acute sinusitis is very common and can often develop after a cold or flu.

It usually clears up on its own without any treatment.

You have two sinuses on your forehead, two either side of the bride of your nose and two behind your cheek bones. It is the last two that are usually infected by sinusitis.


  • High Temperature
  • Blocked or Runny Nose
  • Pain and Tenderness over infected sinus (often becomes worse when moving head)
  • You may sometimes experience:
  • Cough
  • Tiredness
  • Headache 
  • Pressure in your ears
  • Loss of taste and smell

When to seek urgent medical advice

  • If symptoms last more than 1 week
  • If you need antibiotics to clear bacterial infection
  • Repeated bouts of sinusitis 


  • Cold or Flu symptoms 
  • Bacterial infection after a Cold

Do I need antibiotics?

Sinusitis is usually caused by a virus and most people will not need antibiotic treatment. The immune system will usually clear the sinusitis within 1 week.

What treatment should I take?

  • Paracetamol or Ibuprofen to relieve pain
  • Decongestant nasal sprays or drop
  • Steam inhalation 

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