Sinusitis is a common health condition that affects between 15 to 30% of the world’s population. Unfortunately, It also commonly gets mistaken for other conditions such as colds or the flu.

Acute and chronic sinusitis both have signs and symptoms that might feel similar to the flu, but with a handful of different symptoms that might help you and your medical provider distinguish between conditions.

Here’s what you should know about the most important signs and symptoms of sinusitis, and how to ensure that you can find the right diagnosis and treatment.

Sinusitis Signs & Symptoms

First, it’s important to talk about signs and symptoms. A lot of people don’t realize that there’s a difference between the two.

Signs are outward signals of a health condition; they are the ones that everyone can see from the outside, such as a running nose or a rash.

Symptoms are instead things that the patient is experiencing; these are things that can only be confirmed by the patient’s experiences. Sometimes there’s an overlap between a sign and symptom, but they are different things. Signs can be seen, but symptoms are experienced by the patient.

When speaking to your doctor, remember to give them a comprehensive list of all the symptoms you experience, even the ones that you might not think of as related ones. This helps your doctor to make a faster, more accurate diagnosis of what might be causing them – and often faster with your input.


Signs and symptoms of sinusitis are similar to many other health conditions, including common colds, the flu, sinus infection, and general allergies or hayfever. If you suspect that you have any of the above health conditions but your symptoms don’t go away or get worse, then it’s a reason to look at sinusitis as a potential cause.

Sinusitis is a severe type of sinus infection that can either be chronic or acute. When it’s acute, the condition lasts for a few weeks and subsides. When it’s chronic, the condition is bound to continue for longer – and might require more serious treatment in order to go away.

The signs and symptoms of sinusitis include inflammation, nasal drip, general congestion, and a feeling of general unwellness. It’s likely that you will also experience other symptoms, such as coughing, shortness of breath, nausea, changes in appetite, pain, and an affected sense of taste or smell.


Many of the signs and symptoms are less-than-obvious, or might not be something that you first associate with a condition like sinusitis. Nausea, affected breath, tiredness, and insomnia are some of these which you should also always pay attention to when they happen. If you have sinusitis, then you might experience some or all of these symptoms at any one point.

You should see a medical professional if you notice any aggravation, change, or no change in your symptoms: If you have sinusitis, then it can be easy to treat.

Risk Factors

The term risk factors describe anything that increases your risk of developing sinusitis. Some risk factors are associated with health, diet, or lifestyle; things like being overweight or being a smoker. These lifestyle changes can often be changed back into something that’s healthier – and it’s likely that this can help the signs and symptoms of your condition.

Other risk factors are related exclusively to health. These usually describe other health conditions that increase your risk factor for developing others. Conditions such as asthma or bronchitis can increase your chances of having to deal with sinusitis.

How is Sinusitis Diagnosed?

Sinusitis is usually diagnosed with a list of signs and symptoms in combination. Should you present with enough of them at one time (or describe enough of them to your doctor), this either gives them enough to proceed with treatment or order further tests.

Where more tests are ordered, x-rays or ultrasound scans can be some of the methods used to properly diagnose sinusitis.

How is Sinusitis Treated?

Sinusitis can be treated through the use of the correct antibiotics, sometimes with accompanying medication to control symptoms associated with it. Amoxycillin and clavulanate are two of the most common ones used in treating sinusitis, but you might have to seek alternatives if you have other health conditions, if you are taking any other chronic medications and if you have any health conditions or allergies (such as penicillin).

Occasionally, chronic sinusitis might be treated with surgery instead. Ask your doctor about the various treatment options should you suspect that you have sinusitis.

Urgent Care Omaha Walk-In Clinics and in Bellevue, NE

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The information contained on this webpage is for educational purposes as well as to provide general information and general understanding of the pertinent medical issue only, not to provide a specific diagnosis. This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. By using this blog/web site you understand there is no doctor patient relationship between you and the blog/web site publisher. The information included on this site should not be used as a substitute for medical advice from a licensed medical professional in your state. Neither Urgent Care Network, its subsidiaries, affiliates, assignees or successors in interest, nor any other party assume liability for loss or damage due to reliance on content of this blog/web site. If you are experiencing a severe medical issue, you should seek emergency assistance immediately.


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