Sinuses are spaces in the bones of the face around the nose. When a child has a cold or allergies, the sinus tissues become swollen and fill with mucus. The same symptoms also affect the nasal passages. This can cause the drainage system for the sinuses to get blocked. If mucus becomes trapped in the sinuses, bacteria, viruses and fungi can grow and cause a sinus infection.

In younger children, symptoms mimic a cold with a stuffy or a runny nose and a slight fever. If fever appears about a week after the cold symptoms, an infection could be present.

In older children and teens, sinusitis symptoms include:

  • A cough that doesn't improve after the first 7 days of cold symptoms
  • Fever
  • Worsening congestion
  • Foul breath
  • Dental pain
  • Ear pain
  • Tenderness in the face

Treatments by your primary care physician may include antibiotics, pain medicines and using a humidifier. The ENT provider will evaluate if surgical intervention would benefit the child.