Sinus Pain Symptoms

Sinus pain is a very annoying and painful problem for a lot of people. Not only is it painful in your head, it can also make you feel very unwell and can be hard to get rid of too.

The sinuses are located in your head, above and below your eyes on each side of your face. Put simply, your sinuses are cavities or gaps in your skull that no-one has really decided on exactly why they are needed - or no-one has yet found the exact reason for them existing. You might think that if you have an infection in your sinus, that the symptoms would just be pain in that area, but actually, the problem can cause many more issues.

Here is a list of possible symptoms that you have a sinus infection. We will then look at ways to remove that infection, with and without needing a doctor or meds.

Pain and pressure.

This is the most common symptom for having inflamed or infected sinuses. You will experience pain in your eyes, forehead and temples which gets much worse if you bend over or cough. You will also find that if you shake or move your head faster than normal, you will experience pain too.

If you have this problem, taking Paracetamol or decongestants is a good idea as well as drinking more fluids and getting more rest.


When the sinus becomes infected, the mucus that is normally present in them can begin to drain out in a non-normal way. Your sinuses actually drain all the time, but having a cold that might cause blockages or swelling of the nasal passages might mean that the drain does not always happen in the correct way.

You might think that the mucus will drain out of your nose, but it is more normal for it to drain to the back of your throat where it is swallowed. This is nothing to worry about (although some people do prefer to spit it out) and the mucus can be ingested without any major problems or side effects - apart from a nasty taste!

Stomach issues.

One side effect of swallowing too much mucus is that you might feel some discomfort or upset in your stomach. This is due to the mucus draining or being swallowed and going to your stomach where your body reacts to it as something it does not want, trying to get rid of it.

You may feel or be sick or feel like you have got indigestion when you have an infected sinus for this reason. You might already know the feeling of having a “stomach cold” which is definitely something I have had before.


Any sort of pain can be very physically draining and when your head is pounding and every move and cough causes more pain, you will feel totally wiped out. An infected sinus is definitely one health problem that can make you just want to lie down and rest.

One issue is that when you lie down, you may find that your sinuses drain more than when you are standing up, causing more pain in one side of your head. Unfortunately, there is not much you can do about this - you will just have to find the best position for you when you are resting. I like to sit up slightly, with my head raised and straight.

Sleeping on one side can't always be avoided (as you will move in the night) but try to rest with your head central, rather than tilted.

Blocked passages.

When you have an infection or inflammation of your sinuses, you will find that you are not able to breathe through your nose very well. This is because the nasal and sinus passages that lead to the back of your throat are blocked and no air can pass through.

You might also find that you have to sleep with your mouth open too - which might lead to snoring and having a very dry mouth and throat during the night.

Make sure you take a bottle or glass of water to bed with you and if you partner gets annoyed with the snoring, move them into the spare room Smiley

Unable to taste.

The fact that your sinuses will be draining more than usual, or in a slightly different way, will mean that your senses of taste and smell will be affected too.

The mucus can be quite strong tasting and will often overrule your taste buds, stopping you from enjoying food. I can certainly remember eating when I had sinus problems or a bad cold, where everything I ate tasted of absolutely nothing at all.

This is not a major problem - just an annoyance and you senses will return to normal after the infection goes away.

Bad breath.

All that extra mucus and infection will be heading to the back of your throat and nose and people will be able to smell it on your breath.

The problem is, if you are not able to taste or smell things because of the sinus problem, you won't even be aware that there is a problem.

Try using mouthwash to get rid of that smell - but you might have to use it several times a day!

Painful ears.

Your nose, ears and throat are all joined up together so it is no uncommon for a sinus infection to spread to your ears too.

Also, one of your sinuses is located around the side of your face, just above the cheekbone. If this one (sphenoidal sinus) becomes infected or inflamed, you will definitely feel it in your ears.

The symptoms will be similar to earache or just a feeling of pressure in your ears that will not go away. It is not dangerous, just annoying, more than anything.

Sore throat.

Another common symptom of having sinus problems is a sore throat.

You might think that having a cold will cause the sinus pain and therefore your sore throat will be a symptom of the cold rather than sinus infection.

However, the constant flow of mucus draining down your throat can cause irritation (almost as if your throat is burnt from hot liquid) and it can feel sore.

Using throat sweets can help with this feeling and might also help reduce your bad breath too.


Any infection has the ability to cause chills and fever in the sufferer. An infection of any of your sinuses can also cause this too.

If you are feeling like you have a temperature, take some paracetamol to reduce the fever and get some rest, seeing a doctor if it continues. How to remove the sinus infection.

If you suspect that you have an infection or are suffering from sinusitis, get yourself to the doctor straight away. They will most likely confirm this and then prescribe or recommend some decongestants, antibiotics or some over-the-counter meds that will help.

You will most likely only be prescribed antibiotics if the infection is very bad and has not shifted for a few weeks.

Non-medical ways to help sinus pain.

If you are not keen on using meds to fix the issue, there are a few other ways you can help yourself. These might not fix the infection, but they will help you to feel better.

Sleep and rest.

When you are ill, you need to rest as much as possible. Take a few days of work and rest as much as you can. Infections can really take the wind out of your sails, to take time to recuperate and you will feel better quicker.

Drink and eat.

Make sure you drink plenty of fluids and also eat a healthy diet when you are feeling unwell. You might not be able to taste it very well, but keeping a regular intake of food will help your body stay fit and healthy and able to fight the sinus infection.


I always find that taking a hot shower helps with my sinus problems. Somehow, the warm water helps the sinus drain and I do feel much better after having a long shower. However, it does also make me very sleepy too, so I usually crawl straight into bed afterwards.


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