Sinus Infections

Written by Kathleen Gagne
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Mold and Sinus Infections

It is fairly well documented that mold in your environment can affect your sinuses leading to sinusitis or sinus infections. Most people can handle sinusitis with or without medication since it often goes away within about two weeks. Chronic sinusitis, however, that lasts for months or years, may be an allergic reaction to the presence of mold in your environment.

The environmental connection can be a little difficult to detect. The mold that is causing you to feel tired or to have a runny nose or itchy eyes all the time may be in your home or where you work. The problem is that you may not be able to see any mold and may believe that your home is clean enough to keep it out. What may be happening is that there is mold growing in your attic at the site of a small moisture leak. If it is anywhere near heating or cooling ducts, it can then travel in the air into your living areas.

Sinus Infections from the Work Environment

These types of infections are very common, especially in very old buildings, on the top floor of some buildings which have an upper crawl space filled with air conditioning units and ducts. The air up in those areas is usually musty and dank and moist, a perfect environment for the development of a mold infestation. Correcting the problem at work, however, could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and many companies cannot afford the expense.

One way to determine if your sinus problems are related to your work environment is to keep track of whether you feel worse at work, physically, not just because you're working. Do you feel better most Sundays after two days off? Are your sinuses much, much better after a week's vacation? If your condition is serious enough, you may want to discuss it with your employer, or you may need to change jobs. Check with your doctor. While changing jobs is a fairly drastic move, it may be the right move for you if the majority of the time your sinuses are awful is when you are at work.

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