Sinus infections represent one of the biggest health complaints in Pennsylvania. Blue Bell residents are among the 37 million Americans who suffer from sinus conditions every year. Those people don’t only experience physical misery; a recent Korean study indicates they are at risk for anxiety and depression, as well.
The Link Between Sinus Issues & Depression
Chronic sinus infections, known medically as sinusitis, are the result of inflammation in the cavities that surround the nasal passages. Individuals with chronic sinusitis in Blue Bell experience a wide range of symptoms including facial pain and pressure, nasal congestion, headaches, postnasal drip, loss of smell, ear pain, sore throat, nausea and fatigue lasting at least 12 weeks. This can cause a variety of physical, social, emotional and cognitive function problems.
A large-scale study of 16,224 patients in South Korea shows that depression and anxiety are also common in people suffering from sinusitis. Researchers looked at patients treated for this chronic condition between 2002 and 2013, as well as a control group of 32,448 people who did not have sinus problems. The results indicated that patients with chronic sinusitis were 50 percent more likely to experience depression or anxiety. The worse their symptoms, the higher the likelihood of developing mental health problems.
An additional 5,461 study participants were diagnosed with nasal polyps – noncancerous growths in the nasal cavity that cause breathing problems. Compared to the control group, people with chronic sinusitis and nasal polyps were 41 percent more likely to suffer from depression and 45 percent likelier to have anxiety once their conditions were diagnosed. Those individuals with both nasal polyps and chronic sinusitis were 61 percent more likely to have depression and had a 63 percent higher chance of experiencing anxiety.
Surgical Treatment Can Improve Physical & Mental Well-being
The South Korean study doesn’t definitively prove that sinus problems cause depression and anxiety, but there is enough evidence to indicate it’s a definite concern. Most patients with chronic sinusitis are eager for a treatment solution to help relieve physical symptoms anyway. A procedure called Balloon Sinuplasty is highly effective in helping people in Blue Bell find relief from their pain and misery. Eliminating physical symptoms, it stands to reason, would also lessen the likelihood of mental distress.
Balloon Sinuplasty is a non-invasive surgical procedure that can help patients who have not had success with other treatments. Compared to traditional sinus surgery, Balloon Sinuplasty is a veritable cakewalk. There is no cutting or excision of tissue; instead, a catheter is inserted through the nasal passages into the cavity, where a small balloon is gently inflated. This helps widen the passages and allows fluid buildup to drain, clearing up obstructions and leading to long-term relief for the majority of sinus sufferers.
If you are experiencing unrelenting sinus symptoms and haven’t been able to find relief, your Blue Bell ENT specialist can provide you with more information on the Balloon Sinuplasty procedure.