Are Sinus Infections Contagious

Are Sinus Infections Contagious: A Comprehensive Guide

Sinus infection or sinusitis and the common cold can have a lot of common symptoms and they can easily confuse anyone. But there is a fine line of difference that exists between them. Sinusitis occurs when mucus gets trapped in the sinuses which can make the causes of the infection to grow more and more.

Sinusitis comes with a lot of symptoms like pain in your sinuses, nasal congestion, nasal discharge, headache, postnasal drip, fever, fatigue, facing problems in breathing, throat irritation, sore throat, cough and cold. This infection can cause a lot of pain and irritation so it becomes necessary to treat the infection as early as possible.

We all wonder if this infection is contagious. We think whether we should step out of the house or not. There is a dilemma around this question because not many know if this disease is contagious or not.  Through this article on the sinus infection, we will come to know the truth and find out if the infection is contagious. We will also highlight some remedies to get rid of the infection. 

Are Sinus Infections Contagious?

To find out whether the Sinus infection is contagious, we have to know the underlying reason behind the cause. 

If the infection is caused by bacteria, then it is non-contagious. But if it is caused by a virus, then the infection is contagious. 

Going to the details, it’s important to note that there are certain fungi and bacteria which can also cause this infection, such infections are usually milder and last for a short period. It can also be cured by home remedies and medications. 

In the use of a virus, one can spread it by sneezing and coughing openly. When the infected person sneezes or coughs, tiny droplets of water and mucus get released and these droplets consist of the virus that causes the infection. The virus stays in the air for a certain amount of time. When another person comes in contact with this virus directly, he may get infected. This is how the spread of the sinus infection takes place. 

In some cases, the virus doesn’t always cause a sinus infection. The person may acquire just a common cold. But if this cold persists and the symptoms don’t improve, it may develop into a sinus infection. The person is advised to seek professional help to avoid the development of common cold to sinus infection. 

To find out whether the infection is through a virus or bacteria, one should pay attention to the symptoms. 

If the person has bad breath, fever, severe headache or 

Yellowish mucus, then it’s most probably a viral infection. After knowing the cause, it is advised to act accordingly and stop the spread. 

How to Get Rid of Sinus Infection?

There are various home remedies and medications available that can help you in treating the sinusitis. Let’s see 5 easy ways of ‘How to get rid of sinus infection’.

  • Nasal Sprays- Nasal sprays can help you in treating your infection in some way. It helps by keeping your nasal passages moist, reduces swelling, helps in unblocking the congestion in the nasal passages and also helps to treat inflammation. There are various types of decongestant spray available but before using them it is important to take some precautions as they may also cause some side effects. One can also consult a doctor before using any kind of spray.
  • Drink water – Drinking plenty of water can help your body to throw away all the bacterias or viruses from your body. Keep yourself hydrated by drinking purified water and healthy drinks after every one or two hours which can help to treat congestion and keep the mucus membrane in the sinuses moist. Avoid beverages but you can go for normal water, herbal teas, ginger tea, vegetable broth, etc.
  • Steam inhalation – Steam inhalation is the easiest way to feel relief from the symptoms of sinus infection. You can simply use this in the home by taking steam from hot water in a bowl with essential oils in it and placing a cloth over your head which can prevent the heat from going out. One can also sit in the hot shower for some time and can cover your nose and mouth while sleeping in your bed.
  • Neti pot – Using a neti pot to get rid of sinusitis is the most common way used by many people. You can easily buy this online or from the market and it is also easy to use. It will be able to give you some relief from the symptoms of sinusitis and also keeps the mucous membrane moist. It will help you to breathe normally by treating nasal irrigation and sinus drainage. If you are suffering from severe symptoms then you can use neti pot three to four times in a day but generally using it once in a day is enough as it can show some side effects also like nasal dryness and a bloody nose.
  • Boost your immunity and take rest – A good immunity can help you to fight a lot of diseases and this formula works in the case of sinusitis also. Have a healthy diet and boost your immunity by having food items like citrus fruits, ginger, garlic, yoghurt, spinach, broccoli, almonds, red bell peppers, etc in your plate. The process of treatment can also speed up by getting plenty of rest. It will speed up the rate of recovery and will help your body to fight the infection. Also, staying at home and taking rest can prevent the infection from spreading to other people.

Above discussed are some of the ways to get rid of sinus infection but there are many other ways also which you can adopt in order to treat your infection. Some of them are keeping your sinuses hydrated, using warm compresses to the face, using essential oils, acupressure, using aromatherapy, using antibiotics, OTC medications, etc.

How long does sinus infection last? 

Sinus infection or sinusitis can be classified into different categories.

  • Acute Sinusitis
  • Chronic Sinusitis

Acute Sinusitis occurs due to viral infection and can cause inflammation in the body. Normally the symptoms of this infection do not last longer than 10 days whereas chronic sinusitis could be dangerous. It can even last for more than 12 weeks and can cause inflammation for months or years. 

But in most of the cases, sinus infection does not stay longer than 10 days but if you are unable to treat your symptoms in the home or if they are getting worse day by day then it is advised to always consult a doctor. The symptoms of this type of infection can be very painful and can cause a lot of irritation so it is better to get rid of them as early as possible. It is good to consult your doctor if you do not feel comfortable after a few days of treatment.


So, let’s highlight our main purpose of discussion, ‘ Is Sinus Infection Contagious?’. To sum it up in some words, the answer is that in some cases it is and in other cases, it is not. 

The cause of the infection could be many, it may be due to bacterial infection or virus infection so the first step is to discover whether you are suffering from virus infection or from bacterial infection. Though, infection through bacteria is less and statically, only 2 – 4% of the infection is caused by it. 

In case it’s a viral infection then there are chances that it would get better at most in 14 days. You can go ahead with various treatments like nasal decongestant sprays, OTC medications, antihistamines, nasal steroids, neti pot and nasal saline washes in order to get rid of the pain. As compared to other ways, using antibiotics is the best way to treat infection in case of bacteria. There are various other ways also discussed above that can help you to feel some relief from your symptoms. If you are still not feeling well then feel free to consult a doctor.

It is also recommended to stay at home and not have a lot of human exposure as the risks of spread increase. One should always sneeze and cough on the sleeve of the shirt and wash the hands regularly. This way, we can stop the spread of sinus infection caused by a virus. 

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