Pregnancy is wonderful time of waiting for the baby. But sometimes this time is clouded by such an unpleasant disease as sinusitis. Most often, sinus infection while pregnant develops due to hormonal changes in the body of a woman. This, in turn, leads to the appearance of edema of the nasal mucosa.
Of course, any illness during pregnancy is a definite threat for the baby, as well as for the future mother. Therefore, many women are especially concerned about the treatment. Health of a pregnant woman is the main task of doctors, and the prescribed treatment should only help, and not harm the future baby.
What Is Sinusitis?
Sinusitis is an inflammation of one or more paranasal sinuses.
Sinus infection while pregnant most often occurs due to the rebuilding of the future mother’s organism. In particular, the hormonal balance in a woman who is preparing to become a mother changes. This restructuring often causes an edema of the nasal mucosa.
During pregnancy many women complain of nasal discharge and nosebleeds.
Also, sinus infection while pregnant often develops against the background of an acute respiratory viral infection, which provokes swelling and inflammation of the nasal mucosa. Then they spread to the mucous membrane of the sinuses.
According to the nature of the progression, sinusitis can be:
- Acute (acute sinusitis, as a rule, lasts no more than three weeks). With acute sinusitis, sinuses become inflamed, but purulent contents are not formed inside them;
- Chronic (chronic sinusitis lasts from three weeks to several months). The cause of chronic sinusitis during pregnancy is most often a bacterial infection. Sinuses are connected with the nasal cavity through narrow gaps. However, with a strong edema of the nasal mucosa, the communication of the sinuses with the nasal cavity deteriorates considerably, or even completely stops. Slime gradually accumulates in the sinus, and then appear purulence.
Specialists note the following degrees of severity of sinusitis:
- Mild. Sinusitis of mild severity proceeds easily, without high body temperature, most often has a viral nature;
- Average. With a sinusitis of moderate severity, an increase in body temperature of up to 38 degrees can be observed. Also, there may be severe headaches and discomfort in the nasal sinus;
- Severe. With this degree of sinusitis, the inflammation becomes purulent, the body temperature can rise up to 39 degrees and higher. The patient experiences severe weakness, and often suffers from headaches.
If sinus infection while pregnant is not accompanied by some unpleasant symptoms and proceeds in a mild form, then it does not cease to be dangerous. Constant nasal stuffiness not only creates discomfort, but significantly worsens the respiratory function, resulting in shortness of breath and a decrease in the amount of oxygen entering the blood. This has a negative effect on the health of the fetus, and also harms the mother’s body.
Causes of Sinus Infection while Pregnant
Many women face the problem of sinus infection while pregnant. The development of sinusitis occurs against a cold or flu with a running nose, as well as against other infectious diseases. Immunity during pregnancy is significantly reduced, so there is a possibility of many ailments. Still, there is a number of possible reasons why sinusitis can occur in future mothers:
- A head or nose injury, resulting in an inflammatory process.
- Inflammatory process in the paranasal sinuses can arise due to bacterial pathogens.
- The affect of the nasal cavity by bacteria.
- The emergence and development of fungal infections in the paranasal sinuses.
- Sinus infection while pregnant can begin because of different pathogens of the disease: simultaneously the nasal cavity is affected by viruses and bacteria.
- Allergic nature of sinusitis. Allergies can be caused by pet hair, dust, plant pollen, washing detergents.
Diagnosis of Sinus Infection while Pregnant
The doctor will be able to diagnose the inflammatory disease by clearly expressed symptoms. Upon examination, the doctor will determine the diagnosis, but additional tests will be required to verify it accurately. A future mother should undergo a radiographic examination of the paranasal sinuses. To protect the baby from harmful radiation, the belly is closed with a special protective apron. Also, the future mother is sent for a general blood test. Diagnosis of sinusitis is necessary to determine the cause of the inflammatory process.
The future mother can independently recognize the disease by the first symptoms. It is necessary to be able to distinguish the progression of sinusitis. If the ailment bothers no more than 3 weeks, it is an acute form of sinusitis. With a prolonged inflammatory process in the paranasal sinuses, one can speak of a chronic form. Regardless of the form of sinusitis, the signs of the manifestation of the disease are the same.
- The first signs of the ailment include nasal stuffiness with mucous secretions.
- Runny nose in pregnant women lasting for a week.
- Gradual decrease in sense of smell.
- Mucous discharge becomes a sticky consistency.
- The appearance of a headache, which is enhanced by chewing or tilting the head.
- Unpleasant odor from the nose and throat.
- Frequent lacrimation.
- High body temperature may be due to an allergic reaction or infection of the body.
The Danger of Sinus Infection while Pregnant
The focus of purulent inflammation is dangerous for both the mother and future child
For the mother
If you do not treat frontal sinusitis, ethmoid sinusitis, sphenoiditis, there is a possibility of spreading the infection into the brain, into the organ of vision and the bones of the head. This can cause sepsis, encephalopyosis, osteomyelitis, and eye damage. Chronic focus of infection is dangerous because of the development of myocarditis and inflammation of the renal pelvis.
Inflammation in the maxillary sinuses promotes the development of dental diseases, inflammation of the trigeminal nerve, which is manifested by the pain of the face, from the side of the sinus.
Danger for the Fetus
Difficult nasal breathing leads to hypoxia of the fetus, which can affect the rate of the baby’s development and cause changes in the brain. Bacterial infection can cause neurological disorders in the child.
What is the danger of sinus infection while pregnant? Many women believe that this is a safe disease, unable to cause complications in a future mother and the baby. But sinusitis is not a harmless ailment for pregnant women.
Nasal stuffiness can cause shortness of breath, which provokes oxygen starvation and hypoxia in the baby.
If sinusitis occurs in a future mother in the early stages of pregnancy, there is a risk of development of pathologies in the child. The work of the brain can be disrupted, which in the future will cause neurological diseases.
Sinus infection while pregnant at the late stages of gestation period provokes fetal hypoxia, which also has a negative effect on intrauterine development.
But if the diagnosis and treatment of sinusitis during pregnancy were carried out in time, the likelihood of complications is low.
Treatment of Sinus Infection while Pregnant
What Can you yourself Do?
- Do not self-medicate sinus infection while pregnant. When there are signs of inflammation in the paranasal sinuses, you need to consult a doctor. Be sure to follow all of the doctor’s recommendations.
- For a sooner recovery and further prevention of sinusitis it is recommended to install a humidifier in the room.
- A future mother should drink a certain amount of fluid.
- Rinse the nasal passages with salt solutions.
- After consulting a doctor, you can perform inhalation procedures.
- Avoid contact with pets, plants and other allergens.
- Regularly perform a wet cleaning in the room.
- Boost immunity with fresh vegetables and fruits.
- Regularly walk in the fresh air, if you feel well, and there is no high temperature.
- Perform breathing gymnastics exercises.
The Doctor’s Actions
- After the diagnosis, the doctor will be able to prescribe the necessary treatment to relieve the nasal stuffiness and ease the condition of the pregnant woman.
- Safe antimicrobial drugs are allowed for treating sinus infection while pregnant.
- To remove the swelling of the nose, future mothers can use some antihistamines.
- A doctor may allow a single use of an anti-edema drug.
- Doctors allow using saline or seawater solutions to wash the nose at any time.
- For treating sinus infection while pregnant doctors prescribe vitamin-mineral complexes that improve immunity.
Prevention of Sinus Infection while Pregnant
To prevent inflammation in the paranasal sinuses of the nose during pregnancy, a future mother should follow preventive measures.
- Try to increase immunity with the help of fresh vegetables, fruits and vitamin complexes. Regularly be in the fresh air.
- Take care of your diet. It should consist of useful foods.
- Limit contact with pets, some plants and avoid other allergens.
- Regularly perform a wet cleaning in the room.
- Visit a women’s consultation and regularly undergo examinations and tests.
- If you suspect a development of viral, bacterial and other diseases, you should immediately consult a doctor for the prompt removal of the symptoms of the disease.
- Be neat and avoid injuries of the nose and the head.