Sinus Infections

Signs Your Cold is Actually a Sinus Infection

February 1, 2017

2 minutes

Have you experienced coughing, sneezing, and nasal congestion? These are all symptoms of a common cold, but could it also be a sign of a sinus infection?

Your illness may start off as a cold at first, however, your cold may create swollen or inflamed sinuses. If your cold continues for a longer period of time than normal, your sinuses can fill up with fluid due to inflammation or swelling in the sinus cavities. The blockage allows for bacteria to develop and grow, turning your common cold into an infection. This is also known as sinusitis. Sinusitis has different levels of severity, but it’s important to be able to recognize your symptoms in case you need to go to the doctor.

Symptoms of a Sinus Infection

The common cold and sinus infections both share similar symptoms. The main difference is the amount of time the symptoms continue to occur. If the symptoms persist over 10 days, a sinus infection could be the cause, not a common cold.

  • Stuffy or runny nose. This is one of the most common side effects of both sinusitis and a common cold.
  • Sinus discharge. Followed by a stuffy or runny nose, greenish or yellowish sinus discharge may occur. The discharge may also smell.
  • Headache (in the forehead area). Even though a headache occurs with a cold, a sinus headache is different. The pain is due to the pressure of the sinuses swelling and inflammation. You may feel a sense of pressure behind your eyes.
  • Fever or coughing. A persistent cough may be due to sinus drainage. It may be more noticeable when you are trying to sleep. The continuous coughing may keep you from getting the much-needed sleep to aid in fighting off the infection.
  • Sore throat. The continuous drainage of the sinuses may also cause you to have a sore throat. If untreated, the irritating cough may cause your voice to go hoarse.

A common cold will usually go away without treatment. If you experience these symptoms for more than a week, schedule an appointment with us at Kaplan Sinus Relief. Whether it’s acute or chronic sinusitis, let our team diagnose you and help you find relief!


4101 Greenbriar Street, Suite 320

Houston, TX 77098