Acupuncture for Sinusitis

Spring is coming!  It’s that time of year again, when calls come in asking if Acupuncture can help with sinusitis and all its manifestations: sinus pain, sinus congestion, sinus headaches and sinus infections.  


Whether you suffer from chronic sinusitis, acute sinusitis or allergic sinusitis, or infectious sinusitis, acupuncture can help.  


What is Sinusitis?Sinusitis

Sinusitis is inflammation of the sinus cavities (Sinu = sinuses  + itis = inflammation).  

Inflammation of the sinus cavities can be caused by allergies, chemical irritants or over use of over the counter nasal sprays, or the common cold.  Viruses or bacteria may cause sinus infections.


Sinusitis Symptoms 

Sinusitis symptoms will vary by individual and can vary in intensity from day to day.  

Common symptoms include:

  • nasal congestion, 
  • sinus headaches 
  • sinus pressure 
  • sinus pain
  • difficulty breathing through the nose 
  • thick or watery mucous that may yellow or green in color.
  • Fever may be present in a sinus infection 

Secondary to the main symptoms may be a decrease in energy levels and difficulty sleeping.  


Treatment of Sinusitis 

Treatment of acute sinusitis involves over the counter decongestants (Sudafed type meds) and the use of vaporizers to inhale steam.  Decongestants will relieve congestion, but they can also dry you out too much, which could lead to more pain.


Chronic sinusitis is treated through more frequent use of vaporizers/humidifiers, and neti pots with saline rinses.  In cases of bacterial infection, antibiotics may be prescribed.  It’s important to treat sinus infections as they can lead to serious complications if left untreated.  


If the cause of your chronic sinusitis is allergies, you may be given oral steroids or antihistamines.   

Many of the current treatment methods mainly offer symptomatic relief.  


Why Acupuncture?

Acupuncture can treat all forms of sinusitis: acute, chronic, allergic, or infectious. Acupuncture treats the current congestion while strengthening your immune system to help make you less reactive in the future.  


Acupuncture treatments can be so effective that you may notice your congestion lessening during your treatment.   Acupuncture has anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects on the body, helping to reduce the inflammation in the sinus cavities and decrease pain levels.  Acupuncture also helps with the movement of fluids in the body, and can assist in the breakdown of congested mucous. 


Chinese herbal medicine is an excellent addition to your treatment regimen for sinus congestion and infections.   There are many Chinese herbs with anti-bacterial or anti-viral properties, allowing for the treatment of both causes of infection (bacteria or virus).   If needed, an individualized formula will be made for your specific needs.  


Don’t wait for your recurring sinus congestion to turn into a sinus infection.  If you’re prone to sinus congestion, sinus infections, sinus pain or allergies, don’t wait.- get Acupuncture and get better.  


*This article is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any medical conditions and should not be considered medical advice.  Please contact your health care provider if you have concerns regarding sinus infections.