WITH spring already underway and the constant change of the KZN climate, many people are reportedly suffering from sinusitis flare-ups and phlegm build-up in the chest affecting their breathing capabilities. Physiotherapists are trained professionals offering treatment for the management of chronic sinusitis, constant coughing and repeated chest infections. WHAT IS SINUSITIS? Sinusitis is the inflammation of the sinus cavities, which are small air-filled spaces behind the cheekbones and forehead. SYMPTOMS EXPERIENCED ARE: · Pain often described as a dull ache/discomfort around the sinuses· “stuffiness” in the nose, which can also be felt in and around the eyes and cheeks· an increase in mucous production· headaches· neck painPhysiotherapy is used to treat both acute and chronic sinusitis. Acute sinusitis usually lasts for less than 12 weeks and is generally caused by a viral infection. If it lasts for more than 12 weeks, it is usually termed chronic sinusitis. When sinusitis is chronic, the symptoms persist despite treatment with antibiotics and often surgical drainage is needed to provide relief. PHYSIOTHERAPY TREATMENT: The goal of physiotherapy is to treat sinusitis in the early stages of inflammation, to facilitate drainage of mucous, reduce swelling and manage pain. A course of usually four treatment sessions is recommended, before the full impact of the therapy is achieved. THE TREATMENT OFFERED INCLUDES: · Ultrasound therapy: This works by transporting mechanical energy through vibration of the tissue particles affected. This speeds up the healing process by increasing blood flow to the area and decreases pain by relieving pressure and reducing swelling in and around the sinuses. · LASER THERAPY: This treatment modality works instantly, destroying micro-organisms with light energy. It is a non-invasive form of treatment, offering an analgesic effect. It also reduces swelling and inflammation, whilst simultaneously acts on allergic and infective agents. · SINUS MASSAGE: This is a stimulatory massage of the sinuses and the surrounding areas, to provide pain relief and reduce the feeling of “stuffiness” felt in the nose, in and around the eyes and cheeks. HOW DOES PHYSIOTHERAPY HELP FOR CHEST CONDITIONS? Chest infections can be caused by a build-up of phlegm in the lungs. Physiotherapy treatment is aimed at speeding up the recovery process by helping to clear the phlegm from the lungs. This allows for improved airflow into and out of the lungs, which in turn decreases the possibility of infection and lung damage. Physiotherapists also treat patients with chronic conditions like asthma, recurrent bronchitis and COPD.Oftentimes, physiotherapy treatments can prevent you from being admitted into hospital. Physiotherapists offer treatment for people from all walks of life - from newborn babies to the elderly. Physiotherapy for chest conditions includes:· Manual percussions and vibrations to loosen phlegm in the lungs· Postural drainage: positioning during treatment to allow for effective drainage of the lungs· Breathing exercises and the correction of breathing patterns· Nebulisation· Relaxation and body awareness principlesFor new-born babies up to two years, suctioning is done to remove phlegm from the chest to help improve breathing, for children who cannot cough out the phlegm effectively. This is a safe procedure, involving the use of a small tube, which is inserted into the lungs via the nose or mouth to remove excess phlegm. The number of treatments needed varies depending on the severity of the infection and the amount of phlegm build-up in the child.Contact us today at Sohaybah Bux Physiotherapy to find out more.