While many people love the spring-like temperatures, the drastic change in weather could be impacting your health.
Dr. Brian Gross, an otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor) with LewisGale physicians says there is a correlation between changes in the weather and sinus issues.
“The most common ones that we see it effects are the sinuses and the nose. In those patients it’s really important for us to see these patients and really determine what the underlying problem is.”
Temperature and pressure changes in the weather will tend to bring pain and discomfort across patients’ faces — usually below their eyes and across their forehead. Many people would take these symptoms as a sign of a sinus infection, but Gross says that’s not always the case. There could be another underlying issue which could take further evaluation to diagnose.
“We can get to the underlying problem — it just takes an evaluation, sometimes we have to get a CT scan and/or an x-ray.”
The change in temperatures allows different infections and bugs to be present at certain conditions. Allergens also pose an issue when the temperatures change, causing seasonal allergy suffers to be impacted.
Gross also sees various strains of headaches and headache disorders when the weather changes.
“We’ve often seen patients that they have a sinus disease. Often the complaint is ‘The weather changed,’ or ‘The pressure changes outside. I think I have another sinus infection,'” Gross said. “They get treated with antibiotics, and they may get better with the antibiotics, but you’re not getting to the underlying problem.”
According to Gross, sometimes these headaches turn out to be nerve issues or headache issues not related to the sinuses.
For relief, surgery can be an option, but only under certain circumstances.
“Most patients that have pressure and pain in the sinus areas related to changes in pressure in the environment or in weather changes surgery is usually not going to help them,” Gross said. “If we find there is more of an inflammatory or infectious problem, and we are unable to clear it with medicines, there are definitely surgical therapies that can be helpful.”
While some people can be stubborn and overlook some sinus issues, Dr. Gross advises those with extended symptoms to see a doctor so that they can feel better in the future.