As parents it can be tough to watch our child fight off sickness but sometimes what we may think is just a cold is really sinusitis, a viral infection of the sinus tissues. This condition can be mild and something the immune system fights off, however, pediatric sinusitis can become chronic and require surgery.

Symptoms & Causes

It’s good to recognize the common symptoms of sinusitis which include behavioral changes, cough, tiredness, sore throat, headache, fever, loss of smell and stuffy nose. These symptoms can occur when the mucus lining of the sinuses becomes inflamed due to bacterial, viral or fungal infection. Often time home remedy is the best option because a virus must run its course, however, you should see your child’s doctor should the symptoms become painful and worsen or persist for more than a week.

Diagnosis & Treatment

When you see your child’s doctor he or she may ask a few questions about medical history and the symptoms, perform a physical exam or nasal endoscopy. The doctor might also take a sinus culture or perform an allergy skin test. Depending on the root cause of your child’s symptoms your doctor could offer nasal spray, antibiotics and in some cases nasal steroids. If your child’s sinusitis was brought on by allergies, then a allergy immunotherapy shots or drops may be another option. If your child’s sinuses become infected more than four to six times per year or last longer than a few weeks surgical options might be the best solution.


Preventing sinusitis can be the best way to avoid the misery of the symptoms and treatments. Because sinusitis can be triggered by the common cold, do your best to teach kids to wash their hands, blow their nose properly and sneeze into their shoulder rather than their hands. Avoiding cigarette smoke and polluted air also help to keep your child’s sinuses clean and infection free. Using a humidifier is also a good idea also.

Further Reading