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Chronic Rhinosinusitis and Brain Fog Explained

by Melanie Peterson

Rhinosinusitis or sinus infection occurs when the sinus is bacterially or virally infected. The initial stages paint the illness with a cold and persist for over 12 weeks.

It results in irritation, inflammation, and blockage of drainage channels causing the sinus and nasal passages to fill up with pus and mucus in more severe cases.

It is mostly confused with nasal polyps, only that one of these can lead to the other. Nasal polyps are noncancerous tissue growths in the nose. In the long run, persisting Chronic Rhinosinusitis leads to nasal polyps. Both conditions may lead to symptoms such as:

  • Facial pressure or pain
  • Nasal discharge
  • Nasal congestion
  • Frequent headache
  • Symptoms of Chronic Rhinosinusitis
  • Diminished smelling or tasting drinks and food
  • Tenderness or discomfort in one’s face, especially in areas around the cheeks, eyes, and forehead
  • Yellow or green nasal discharge
  • Hardened or dry mucus blocking the nasal discharge
  • Nausea
  • Pain in the ears
  • Pain in the ears
  • Headaches due to swelling of the sinuses
  • Cough that feels bad at night
  • Cough that feels bad at night
  • Halitosis (bad breath)
  • Throat soreness

Causes of Chronic Rhinosinusitis

  • Tissue growth is known as nasal polyps – The changes block the nasal passage making it hard to breathe.
  • Allergies such as environmental allergies (caused by the smell of chemicals, smoke, and pollen)
  • Bacterial, fungal, and viral infections in the windpipe, nose, and lungs cause respiratory tract infections. The resultant effect is an inflamed nose making it hard for mucus to drain.
  • Presence of uneven wall of tissue-deviated septum. It limits airflow in one or both nostrils.
  • Digestive tract infections such as Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
  • Cystic fibrosis is a condition where the body builds up mucus and does not drain it properly, causing a bacterial infection.
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) a virus that weakens the immune system.
  • Asthma causes chronic inflammation in the nasal airways.

Treatments OF Chronic Rhinosinusitis

There are various available treatments for Chronic Rhinosinusitis, which offer both short-term and long-term relief. Others aid in treating the underlying cause of sinusitis.

1. Medications and Specialist Treatment

Prescribed over-the-counter medications are the utmost pain relievers of headaches, migraines, and release head pressure. These include:

  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil)
  • Nasal sprays with corticosteroids reduce nasal blockage
  • OTC sprays with Nasonex and Flonase Allergy Relief

For those patients having infectious sinuses; the doctor will recommend an antibiotic for treatment.

If allergies cause chronic sinuses, the patient will receive allergy shots to gradually allow the body to develop immunity against the said allergens. The allergy shots may not be effective immediately but are worth counting on several years later.

2. Surgery

Recommended surgeries are in rare conditions. Such options for chronic sinusitis include:

  • Rhinoplasty (nose surgery) or septoplasty (deviated septum surgery): The doctor will reshape the inner nasal structure to straighten it out or expand it out. This process improves one’s breathing ability by opening up the nasal airway.
  • Endoscopic sinus surgery: The doctor inserts a narrow tube with a light camera to see if there is tissue growth, polyps, or mucus blocking the sinuses. In the case of such a reality, the doctor will remove it to clear the breathing passage.

Many patients with sinus infections describe having brain fog. Brain fog is not a medical term; instead, is a symptom of another medical condition.

What are the Causes of Brain Fog?


Increased stress levels weaken the immune system, trigger depression and increase blood pressure. Over time it leads to brain exhaustion, making it harder to focus, reason, and think.

Hormonal Changes

Unbalanced progesterone and estrogen levels during pregnancy can cause short-term cognitive impairment. Similarly, a drop in estrogen levels during menopause causes cloudy thinking, forgetfulness, and poor concertation.

Lack of Sleep

Brain functions are interfered with when one does not get enough sleep. Little sleep leads to cloudy thoughts and poor concertation.


Supplements of Vitamin B-12 support healthy brain function, and a deficiency in the mineral causes brain fog. Eating dairy products, aspartame, peanuts, and MSG increase brain fog rates if one has food allergies.

Medical Conditions

Conditions associated with fatigue, inflammation, or unbalanced blood glucose levels are also causations of brain fog. Other conditions causing this illness are:

  • Chronic Rhinosinusitis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Depression
  • Migraines
  • Diabetes
  • Anemia
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Diabetes
  • Dehydration
  • Diseases such as arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and lupus
  • Hypothyroidism


Some medications have brain fog as a side effect. A doctor will lower or switch the dosage to improve body functionality. Cancer treatments are known for brain fog occurrences; this is called the chemo brain.

Symptoms of Brain Fog

  • Difficulty in concertation
  • The patient shows a longer reaction time.
  • The patient is more distractible.

Treatment of Brain Fog

  • Omega-3 and Essential Fatty Acids

One needs to eat foods rich in essential fatty acids present in sardines and salmon. Looking for supplements is also an easy way to go about it.

  • Magnesium

This mineral is involved in over 350 body biochemical reactions and is the fourth most abundant mineral in the body. Magnesium speeds up brain function as well as relieves depression and improves sleep.

  • Folate

Folic acid deficiency causes a decrease in cognitive development. One can supplement folic acid in combination with other vitamin bs, which improve the brain’s functionality.

  • Acetylcholine

Ach, acetylcholine is essential in the transmission of neurons. A deficiency in this mineral decreases one’s cognitive development.

  • Phosphatidylserine

It is an essential phospholipid that offers support to the cell membranes. Improved cell communication and maintenance of neuron growth is its primary function.

  • Rhodiola rosea

This herb promotes body balance. It counters mental fatigue and is a natural remedy for boosting cognitive functionality.

  • Other natural brain fog cures

Changing someone’s lifestyle is highly recommended. We say we live most of our lives in our brains; taking care of it while alive is the most workable preventive step.

One should make sure that they get 7- hours of sleep. Going to bed early and rising is a bedtime routine that everyone should practice.

Playing soft music relaxes the mind; practicing meditation while taking long breaths relieves the body of stress.

Healthy diets are essential. What you feed practically goes to the brain to enable it to function well. Ones should avoid high intakes of sugars, carbonated drinks, and junk foods that do not add any minerals to the body. Supplementing these foods with vegetables, fruits, water, and proteins feeds the brain what is needed.

Exercising is as important as eating healthy, engaging in fun activities, meeting up with friends and families ensures the body is in the constant fill of positive energy.

One should find their solution.

Not everything will work for everyone; finding one’s solution may be challenging but worthwhile.

It is essential to take care of yourself as it is crucial to take care of others. However, the above might not work for one; it truly will work for another person; getting in touch with medical practitioners to get medication is the number one step of getting trusted help.

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