What are the Most Effective Sinus Headache Cures?

Nicole Long

Inflammation of the sinus cavities results in painful sinus headaches. Sinus headaches can be effectively treated by relieving the inflammation responsible for the pain. Options for sinus headache cures include medication, home-based treatments, herbal remedies, and nutritional supplements. In severe cases, surgery may represent the most effective way to cure sinus headaches.

Decongestants can relieve sinus pressure and headaches.
Decongestants can relieve sinus pressure and headaches.

Antibiotics are a traditional approach to cure sinus headaches when a bacterial infection is the suspected cause of sinus inflammation. Depending on the severity, antibiotic treatment can last anywhere from 10 days to three months. Medication instructions should be followed exactly and antibiotics taken for the recommended timeframe to achieve optimum relief.

Antihistamines can reduce inflammation related to sinus headaches.
Antihistamines can reduce inflammation related to sinus headaches.

Medication options for sinus headache cures extend beyond antibiotics. Corticosteroid sprays can help reduce nasal swelling caused by inflammation. This can lead to a reduction in aggravating symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose and itching.

Using a humidifier to add moisture to the air might provide relief from symptoms of a sinus headache.
Using a humidifier to add moisture to the air might provide relief from symptoms of a sinus headache.

For those experiencing sinus headaches as a result of allergies, antihistamines can offer relief. Over-the-counter and prescription antihistamines are available. Antihistamines provide temporary relief for symptoms related to sinus inflammation, including sinus headaches.

A doctor might recommend surgery for chronic sinus headaches that don't respond to other treatments.
A doctor might recommend surgery for chronic sinus headaches that don't respond to other treatments.

Additional medication options include decongestants and medications commonly used to treat migraines. Decongestants work to reduce sinus pressure and help alleviate a sinus headache. Triptans, commonly used to treat migraines, have shown promise as an option for effective sinus headache cures.

Some people find relief for recurring sinus headaches in meditation.
Some people find relief for recurring sinus headaches in meditation.

Home-based sinus headache cures include using a humidifier or saline nasal spray. The humidifier and nasal spray can help moisturize sinus cavities and relieve inflammation. Some may find relaxation techniques such as meditation and stretching helpful in relieving pain for recurrent sinus headaches.

People with a persistent sinus headache should see their doctor to rule out any underlying health concerns.
People with a persistent sinus headache should see their doctor to rule out any underlying health concerns.

Herbal remedies also exist to help deal with sinus headaches. Feverfew and willow bark are just a few herbs known to help reduce sinus inflammation and relieve sinus headaches. Reactions with traditional medication and other herbs are possible, so the guidance of a physician is recommended before proceeding with herbal treatment options.

A saline or corticosteroid nasal spray may help to relieve the pain of a sinus headache.
A saline or corticosteroid nasal spray may help to relieve the pain of a sinus headache.

Whether treating a sinus headache upon onset or preventing one in the first place, nutritional and dietary supplements may provide hope for sinus headache cures. For instance, the supplement bromelain can reduce inflammation and swelling to provide sinus headache relief. Taking nutritional and dietary supplements can interfere with current medications and pose a risk to certain people. Check with a doctor before taking any supplements.

Chronic sinusitis may require surgery if it doesn’t respond to traditional medication, home treatment or alternative medicine. Rhinoplasty can help enlarge sinus openings while endoscopic surgery removes polyps and bone spurs that may be fueling inflammation and sinus headaches. These treatments can be performed by an ear, nose and throat specialist.

Both bacterial and viral sinus infections can cause a sinus headache.
Both bacterial and viral sinus infections can cause a sinus headache.

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Discussion Comments

Lostnfound

I'm a big fan of standing in a warm shower and letting the steam loosen everything up in my sinuses. I've heard a neti pot is a good remedy, but I've never tried it. I'm kind of leery of putting water in my nose. I hate nasal sprays and drops, so I'm not a very good source on whether nasal sprays actually do much good.

I use decongestants too, but I try not to take too much medication for anything. I'd rather try steam or a warm compress on my forehead. Sometimes, there's nothing better for a sinus headache than a good old nap.

Grivusangel

The best remedy for me has always been a decongestant with a pain reliever. I usually take one sinus pill that has Tylenol, and take it with an NSAID like naproxen. That seems to hit the pain from several different directions, and it works very well for me. In the winter, I'm usually plagued by sinus headaches, so I've had to learn to treat them.

I will say if the headaches are accompanied by a lot of drainage and a very sore throat, go ahead and go to the doctor. You may be starting a sinus infection and you'll need antibiotics.

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