Believe it or not, there are good headaches and bad headaches. The bad headaches are migraines, cluster headaches and chronic daily headaches – headaches for which there is no simple cure. A sinus headache is considered a “good headache” because once you understand the causes of sinus headaches, it is possible to prevent them.
What Causes Sinus Headaches?
The largest percentage of sinus headaches are caused by a condition called sinusitis.
Sinusitis happens when the mucus membranes in your head become inflamed so the normal discharge of mucus is blocked, causing you to feel intense pain in your forehead, cheekbones or behind the bridge of your nose. Your head may even throb.
A number of different things can cause your mucous membranes to become inflamed, resulting in sinusitis. This can be something as simple as an exposure to the cold. In fact, if you suffer from sinus headaches you may notice they become more severe in colder weather in the fall and winter months.
Other Causes of Sinus Headaches
One misconception about sinus headaches is that they can be caused by allergies. The fact is that allergies can result in sinus congestion, which, in turn, can lead to sinusitis and, thus, a sinus headache.
Sinus headaches can also be triggered by environmental factors such as cigarette smoke, mold and pollen. Other environmental factors that can cause sinusitis include strong odors such as heavy perfumes, and air pollutants. A condition called allergic rhinitis can cause sinus headaches, as can respiratory infections.
Many people develop sinusitis as the result of a cold, fungal infection or structural problems in their nasal cavities.
Risk Factors For Chronic Sinusitis
While almost anyone can develop chronic sinusitis, there are certain risk factors that make it more likely you will develop this disease. For example, one risk factor for chronic sinusitis is asthma and so is any condition that affects the way mucus moves within your respiratory system — such as cystic fibrosis.
Constant exposure to first- or even second hand smoke increases the likelihood that you will have chronic sinusitis, as can an impaired immune system. Tumors and nasal growths (polyps) can also increase the risk for developing chronic sinusitis.
When To See Your Healthcare Provider
If you are experiencing a deep, intense pain in your forehead, cheekbones or behind the bridge of your nose, be sure to see your healthcare provider. Your headaches may indeed be caused by sinusitis. However, they could be caused by something more serious such as a tumor, making it important that you get an accurate diagnosis so that you can achieve sinus headache relief.
If you do have sinus headaches, your healthcare provider can help you identify the causes of sinus headaches and get you started on sinus headache treatments …