Waking up with a headache, that too with a blocked nose, is a rough start to the day. If this becomes a routine where the face hurts with heaviness in the head, it could be arising from medical condition sinusitis. The inflammation of the paranasal sinuses (air-filled cavities within the skull bone) is referred to as sinusitis. Homeopathy can be of great help in treating sinusitis. The natural mode of treatment aims at treating the root cause (like chronic cold, nasal allergies) behind sinusitis to give long-term relief. Along with treating the root cause, these medicines offer relief in the immediate symptoms of sinusitis as well. The homeopathic mode of treatment can completely cure chronic and recurrent sinusitis, though it may take some time. The homeopathic remedies for sinus infections, are made of natural substances and have zero side effects.
Homeopathic Remedies For Sinus Infection
Some of the leading remedies to treat sinusitis are Belladonna, Kali Bichrome, Silicea, Hydrastis, Pulsatilla and Natrum Mur. Lemna Minor is the top-most medicine to treat nasal polyps.
1. Belladonna – Top-Grade Medicine For Sinus Headache
Belladonna is a natural medicine sourced from the plant ‘deadly nightshade’. It is the most frequently used medicine for cases of sinusitis when headache is most marked. In cases needing it, pain and heaviness is marked in the forehead (frontal headache) due to sinus congestion. There is relief by binding the head tightly with cloth or applying pressure. This medicine is most prominently indicated for frontal sinusitis. It is also indicated for maxillary sinusitis as well. Belladonna is also suitable to manage sore throat and cough in cases of sinusitis. The cough is short and dry which gets worse at night. It is the best remedy for acute sinusitis.
When and How to use Belladonna?
It is a leading medicine for sinusitis recommended mainly when frontal headache is causing trouble. This medicine can be used in both low and high potencies. In low potency like 30C, it can be taken three to four times a day. Once the severity of the headache reduces, the dose should be decreased. When using high potency like 200C, its use is usually limited to once a day. 1M potency is also required in some cases, but to use it, consult a homeopathic physician.
2. Kali Bichrome – For Sinusitis With Post Nasal Discharge
Kali Bichrome is the best medicine for sinusitis where the most prominent complaint is post nasal discharge – PND (dripping of mucus from back of nose into the throat). The discharge is very thick, sticky, ropy mostly yellowish or greenish. Along with PND, there is headache in frontal region (forehead). Pain at the root of the nose is also present. Nose feels stuffed along with these symptoms. The bad smell from nose occurs due to accumulation of nasal discharge. In cases needing it, a history of recurrent cold may be found.
When and How to Kali Bichrome?
A person having post nasal dripping from sinusitis can find this medicine highly effective. Pain in the forehead and the root of the nose are also indicative to use it. The most commonly used potency of this medicine is 30C that can be taken twice a day. It will reduce sinus inflammation and reduce associated symptoms including PND, frontal headache and pain at the root of the nose.
3. Silicea – For Sinus Infections And Chronic Colds
Silicea is a highly recommended medicine for cases of sinus infections and chronic cold. The main symptom guiding its use is throbbing pain in forehead especially over the right eye. There is relief in headache by pressing the head firmly or wrapping up warmly. Other symptoms along with this include nasal blockage and thick pus-like discharge. The nasal discharge forms hard crusts; any attempt to loosen these crusts results in bleeding. There is loss of smell and taste as well.
When and How to use Silicea?
Use of silicea should be considered for those who suffer from chronic cold and sinus infection. The symptoms to prescribe it are pain in forehead, nasal blockage and thick pus-like nasal discharge. Among various available potencies, Silicea works most wonderfully in 6X potency. Silicea 6X can be taken any time twice a day to four times a day as per the severity of symptoms.
4. Hydrastis – For Sinusitis With PND
This medicine is prepared from fresh root of plant ‘golden seal’. Like medicine Kali Bichrome, this medicine is also very beneficial for treating sinusitis with prominent PND (post nasal discharge). The discharge is thick, mostly yellow. Besides, sinus headache is present. Burning pain in the nose, sore throat, burning sensation in throat may attend above indications.
When and How to use Hydrastis?
This medicine can be used in sinusitis cases when main complaint is post-nasal thick yellow discharge. It can be taken in 30C potency two to three times a day for good results.
5. Pulsatilla – For Thick Yellow Or Green Nasal Discharge
Pulsatilla is a natural medicine for sinusitis prepared from ‘windflower’. The foremost indication to use it in sinusitis is thick yellow or green nasal discharge. A characteristic feature is the discharge gets worse in a closed room and gets better in open air. The discharge may be very foul-smelling. Nostrils may be blocked as well, along with loss of smell and taste. This medicine is recommended for frontal sinusitis and maxillary sinusitis. Pain and heaviness is felt over the forehead when frontal sinus is involved. In case of maxillary sinus involvement, tearing type of pain is felt in maxillary sinus (in cheeks) that may extend to ears.
When and How to use Pulsatilla?
For sinusitis, the key indication based on which it is prescribed is ‘thick yellow or green nasal discharge’. Though may be used in different potencies, it is best to begin with 30C potency. Pulsatilla 30C can be taken once or twice a day. Higher potencies like 200C and 1M can also be considered afterward but only under the supervision of homeopathic expert.
6. Natrum Mur – For Sinus Infections And Nasal Allergy
Natrum Mur is good choice of remedy in cases of sinusitis where nasal allergy is associated. This medicine aims at treating nasal allergy when it is the root cause leading to sinus Infections. The symptoms to use this medicine are , a watery discharge from nose , sneezing, pain in head.
When and How to use Natrum Mur?
Persons who suffer sinusitis as a result of nasal allergies are ideal subjects to use this medicine. This medicine works in treating nasal allergies to prevent recurrent sinus infections. Natrum Mur is very effective in 6X potency that can be repeated three to four times a day.
7. Lemna Minor – For Sinus Infections Complicated With Nasal Polyp
In some cases, nasal polyps are a contributing factor for sinus infection. A nasal polyp in a nasal cavity blocks the normal drainage of discharge. The collected discharge thus acts as a pool for infection-causing agents, leading to inflammation of sinuses. Here, medicine Lemna Minor is the best medicine to help shrink nasal polyps to prevent sinus infections. It may take some time to shrink the polyps, but once done recurrent sinus infections are prevented.
When and How to take Lemna Minor?
If nasal polyps are obstructing mucus drainage and causing recurrent sinus infections, this medicine can work wonders. It will help in shrinking nasal polyps which are a contributing factor for sinus infections. Lemna Minor acts best when taken in mother tincture (Q) form. 5-7 drops of Lemna Minor Q can be taken twice a day by dissolving in half a cup of water.
Cause And Risk Factors Behind Sinusitis
Sinusitis results when there is blockage of sinus openings by mucus. There are certain factors and health problems that increase the risk of sinusitis.
1. Common cold (that can be caused by virus or bacteria) can cause inflammation of sinus and obstruct the drainage of mucus
2. Nasal allergies and upper respiratory tract infections
3. Nasal polyps are the non-cancerous growths in nose or paranasal sinuses which are blocking nose or sinus
4. Deviated nasal septum means cartilage that divides the nose is not straight that is causing nasal blockage
5. Weak immune system
6. A dental infection, cystic fibrosis (a genetic disease that causes build-up of the mucus which is thick, sticky mainly in lungs and pancreas), and smoking are some other contributory factors.
Pathophysiology Of Sinusitis
Paranasal sinuses are four pairs of hollow spaces in the skull. These are situated in cheekbones (maxillary sinus), forehead (frontal sinus), behind the bridge of the nose and between the eyes (ethmoidal sinuses). Another set is situated in the upper region of the nose and behind the eyes (sphenoidal sinuses). All the sinuses have the same lining that is present in the nose. This lining produces mucus, which is drained out of the sinuses, through an opening in the nose. When a person has a cold or nasal allergy, there is increased mucus production and swelling of sinuses that can cause the drainage to get blocked. This results in the mucus being trapped in the sinuses, leading to the growth of bacteria and viruses.
Types Of sinusitis
There are four types of sinusitis depending on how long the symptoms last.
Acute sinusitis: This type of sinusitis lasts till about 2- 4 weeks’ time.
Subacute sinusitis: It lasts between one to three months.
Chronic sinusitis: Its symptoms last for three months or longer.
Recurrent sinusitis: Acute sinusitis happens four or more times in one year and each episode remains for one to two weeks’ time.
Symptoms Of Sinusitis
The signs and symptoms of sinusitis include
1. Nasal discharge: Thick discharge that can be yellow, green, pus-like or blood-stained
3. Headache especially in the morning
4. Pain/pressure on head or face, swelling or tenderness on the face according to the sinus involved as given below:
In frontal sinusitis: It is felt on forehead and above the eyes
In maxillary sinusitis: It is felt on cheeks, or upper jaw, teeth
In ethmoidal sinusitis: Pain or pressure is observed behind eyes and in medial canthi (corner of eye where upper eyelid and lower eyelid meet towards nose side)
In sphenoidal sinusitis: Pain/pressure occurs behind eyes and felt in the top/ back of the head
5. Stuffy nose, making breathing through nose difficult
6. Ear fullness/pain, decreased sense of smell and taste, cough, throat clearing, tiredness, bad breath are some other signs and symptoms
7. Fever (it may occur in acute sinusitis and is uncommon in chronic sinusitis)
The signs and symptoms are similar for acute and chronic sinusitis. However, the duration varies with chronic sinusitis lasting for three or more months.
Complications are rare in sinusitis cases. however, if not treated, some complications that might occur include meningitis (inflammation of membranes that cover brain and spinal cord), infection of eyes, and infection of skull bones.