Pediatric Sinusitis

Help Your Child Find Relief from Sinusitis

If your child has a runny nose, it may just be a symptom of the common cold. But in some cases, it can be indicative of a sinus infection. Because children’s sinuses don’t fully develop until they are teenagers, they are more susceptible to sinus infections than adults are.

While acute sinusitis often clears up on its own, some sinus infections may require medical treatment. At ENT Associates of Santa Barbara, we can partner with your family to ensure that your child receives the highest quality treatment for their symptoms.

Child outdoors blowing the seed pods off of a dandelion that has gone to seed. She holds the dandelion with both hands while looking at it.

What Are the Symptoms of Sinus Infections in Children?

Particularly if your child is too young to communicate verbally, keep an eye out for a fever, cold symptoms, irritability or fatigue.

Children with sinusitis may experience:

  • Cold symptoms that last longer than 10 days
  • Fever
  • Yellow or green nasal drainage for at least three days
  • Swelling in the area around the eyes
  • Headache
  • Irritability or excessive sleepiness

What Causes Sinus Infections in Children?

Sinusitis is categorized as either acute or chronic. Acute sinusitis, which typically lasts fewer than 10 days, can be caused by viruses, bacteria or allergies.

Chronic sinusitis lasts longer than 12 weeks and is usually the result of prolonged inflammation. If a lung infection is part of chronic sinusitis, it is typically not the main cause.

Are Sinus Infections Contagious?

If a sinus infection is the result of a virus, virus can be contagious but the infection itself is not. Because of this, it’s important to teach your children good hygiene skills, such as handwashing and sneezing and coughing into the nook of their elbow.

How Do ENTs Diagnose Pediatric Sinusitis?

Our provider will take time to learn about your child’s symptoms, their length and severity, and how they’re impacting daily life. They will examine your child’s ears, nose and throat and may also order a CT scan to look for physical obstructions of the sinuses.

How Is Pediatric Sinusitis Treated?

Our otolaryngologist will work with your family to determine the best treatment for your child’s symptoms. Treatment will be customized based on your child’s age, health history and cause and severity of symptoms.

Acute sinusitis often clears up on its own, but decongestants and saline sprays can be used to manage symptoms. Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics depending on the cause of your symptoms.

Chronic sinusitis requires a long-term medical or surgical solution. Children with symptoms that do not respond to medication may require surgery. Removal of adenoid tissue or widening of the nasal passages may be recommended. If surgery is necessary, our ENT will thoroughly explain the procedure and answer any questions your family has.

Our Team Will Partner With Your Family

As a parent, it’s difficult to see your child experience the discomfort of sinusitis symptoms. At ENT Associates of Santa Barbara, we’ll work with you to ensure that both you and your child understand their condition and respond to any concerns that may arise. We’ll also be by your side as your child begins treatment and gets back to engaging with all that childhood has to offer.

Call ENT Associates of Santa Barbara for more information or to schedule an appointment.

(805) 964-6926