Allergist located in Valencia, CA


Approximately 35 million Americans suffer from sinusitis at least once a year. The condition can cause facial pain, a runny or stuffy nose, and frustrating fatigue. At her eponymous practice in Valencia, California, Maricar Cutillar-Garcia, MD, provides helpful sinusitis care to patients of all ages. If you’re looking to eliminate acute or chronic sinusitis and find relief for uncomfortable symptoms, you may benefit from at-home remedies, prescription nasal sprays, or antibiotics. To schedule an appointment, call the office today or use the online booking tool. 

Sinusitis Q & A

What is sinusitis?

Sinusitis occurs when the tissues in your sinuses become inflamed, and mucus builds up. Your sinuses include the spaces in your forehead, cheeks, and nose. 

The common cold can lead to sinusitis, but other viruses, bacteria, fungi, and seasonal allergies can also cause the condition. 

Acute sinusitis usually only lasts 7-10 days, and you can treat it with over-the-counter (OTC) medicines and at-home remedies. 

You may have chronic sinusitis if you have symptoms for longer than three months or if the condition keeps coming back. Your provider can identify if there’s an underlying cause that needs attention. 

You’re at greater risk for chronic sinusitis if you have nasal allergies, asthma, a weakened immune system, deviated septum, nasal polyps (growths), or if you’re a smoker.  

What are the symptoms of sinusitis? 

Common symptoms of sinusitis include:

  • Postnasal drip 
  • Yellow or green nasal discharge
  • Stuffy nose
  • Facial tenderness around your nose, eyes, and forehead
  • Pain in your head when you bend over
  • Ear pressure or pain
  • Toothache
  • Bad breath (halitosis)
  • Reduced sense of taste or smell 
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Fatigue 

Although sinusitis isn’t contagious, the cause of it may be. It’s important to take precautions until you know the origin of your condition. 

How do you diagnose and treat sinusitis?

Your provider first checks your ears, nose, and throat for swelling, drainage, or blockage. 

To better diagnose your condition, they may take a nasal swab, perform a computed tomography (CT) scan, or conduct an allergy test. 

Depending on the severity of your sinusitis, you can treat it at home with: 

  • Over-the-counter (OTC) cold and allergy medications
  • OTC painkillers 
  • Oral or topical decongestants
  • Nasal saline rinses
  • Drinking plenty of fluids
  • Rest
  • Warm compresses 
  • Steam vapors 

If symptoms of sinusitis don’t improve after 10 days and your provider suspects your sinusitis is due to a bacterial infection, they may prescribe antibiotics. They may recommend intranasal steroid sprays, but you should only use these for three to five days. 

If you have chronic sinusitis, they may prescribe inhaled or oral steroids. 

If your sinusitis is due to structural issues, a fungal infection, or nasal polyps, they may refer you to an outside specialist to discuss surgery. 

To prevent sinusitis, practice good hygiene and avoid smoking or irritating allergens. 

To find relief for your sinusitis, call Maricar Cutillar-Garcia, MD, today or schedule an appointment online.