We all have sinuses, but did you know that they can become inflamed which leads to certain medical problems? Luckily, We at Warwick Chiropractic here in Lacey can help you with this issue. First, let’s break down what exactly sinuses are and the common problems of the area.

Is it Really a Sinus Headache?

The sinuses are cavities in the skull and rest behind the face. The sinuses main purpose is to help humidify the air that we breathe and can enhance our voices too. Many patients with sinus pain complain that they have a sinus headache, which can be controversial. This is because oftentimes the headache the patient is experiencing may not even be due to an issue with their sinuses.

Below, we will explain the three most common causes of “sinus headache pain.”


The lining of the sinuses have potential to become inflamed, which causes a patient to experience congestion, runny nose, sneezing, itching, nosebleeds, recurring ear infections, snoring, mouth breathing, fatigue, and headache. Acute rhinitis can be caused by viral infection, while reccuring rhinitis can be caused by reactions to allergens like pollen, dust mites, mold, cockroach feces, animal dander, fumes, odors, temperature, hormonal changes, mediciations, environmental changes, smoke, and food and spices to name several.

One can prevent chornic rhinitus by avoiding their allergens, eating a healthy diet, and taking vitamins or supplements to help the condition, like antihistamines, nose sprays, decongestants, asthma medication, and allergy treatments. In severe cases, surgery can be an option.


Next, let’s talk about sinusitis, which occurs when fluid builds up in the sinuses. These fluids are breeding grounds for bacteria and infection. Symptoms may include a runny/stuffy nose, facial pain/pressure, post-nasal drop, sore throat, cough, bad breath, and headache. CDC guidelines state that a patient experiencing sinusits can usually self manage their symptoms by usuing a warm compress, nasal spray, and humidifier. If symptoms last more than 10 days, it is reccomended to see a doctor as a course of antibiotics may be necessary.

Other Types of Headaches

Finally, there can be other types of headaches. A 2019 study was done which included 174 patients seeking care for what they complained was a sinus headache. After patient examinations, doctors concluded that only 13 percent actually met the diagnosis for a headache associated with rhinitus or sinusitis. The other percentages are as follows:

  • Migraine: 53%
  • Tension Headache: 31%
  • Not Categorizied: 3%

A separate study including 31 individuals who self diagnosed with a sinus headache and 30 with no headache history found that the sinus headache group patients were more likely to exhibit abnormal cervical spine function. This and other studys have shown that neck disorders may lead to a few different types of headache, including rhinitis and sinusitis.

Sinus Headaches May Be Misdiagnosed

So from this research, we can see that sinus headaches are usually self misdiagnosed. Those who think they may have a sinus headache should always be checked for other forms of headache, along with a cervical spine evaluation.

At Warwick Chiropractic & Massage we do just that. When you come in for your appointment, you can be sure that we will examine you, speak with you and above all listen to your complaint. Our goal is to find the cause and fix it to help you feel better faster.

We accept many insurances and are walk in friendly. Come in and see us and we will help you recover the right way, The Warwick Way.

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