Can Sinus Infections Cause Eye Problems?

Can Sinus Infections Cause Eye Problems?

Sinus infections can make you miserable. Pressure, pain, drainage and difficulty breathing are classic symptoms. Can sinus infections cause eye problems or problems? The simple answer is yes, and here’s why.

Sinus Pressure and Eye Pain 

The sinuses are located all throughout our face – in the cheeks, near the ear, behind the eye, and in the forehead and nose. Infected sinuses don’t drain properly. The mucous and debris that build up can cause a feeling of pressure and pain. If the infection is in the ethmoid sinuses (the sinuses located between the eyes) the pressure can cause pain that radiates to the eyes.

Infection in the frontal sinuses causes a headache that can feel like it is coming from the eyes. Doctors often recommend decongestants to promote drainage and this reduces the pressure. The reduced pressure eases the pain in the area of the eyes.

Sinus Infection and Blurry Vision

Sinus infections can cause more than just pain in the area of the eyes. In fact, sinus infections can cause problems even if you don’t feel pain.

Sinus pressure can impact blood circulation to the eyes. Disruption in blood circulation to the eyes causes sudden, patchy blurred vision. A warm compress across the forehead can ease pressure and reduce the swelling. This restores proper circulation of blood to the eyes and the blurry vision is cleared. 

Sudden blurry vision can be a symptom of a serious condition and your doctor should always be consulted. It is extremely unlikely but a sinus infection could actually spread into the eye socket, causing an infection that could cause blindness. Don’t risk it. See your doctor. 

Chronic Sinus Infections

It’s not uncommon for a sinus infection to set in after a cold. Most sinus infections respond positively to decongestants and antibiotics. However, if you have recurring sinus infections that’s chronic sinusitis and that’s a serious condition.

According to the Mayo Clinic, chronic sinusitis, also called chronic rhinosinusitis, occurs when the spaces inside your nose and head (sinuses) are swollen and inflamed for three months or longer, despite treatment. The condition can affect both adults and children.

See an ENT to get to the bottom for the reason for the infections. You may have structural problems that can be addressed with balloon sinuplasty. If you have allergies, get to an allergist. Uncontrolled allergies can lead to chronic sinusitis.

Don’t let sinus infections cause pain in your eyes or anywhere else. 

Till next time,

Cheryl


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