Crackling Sound in Sinuses. Should You Be Worried?
Published Oct 26, 2020
Hearing abnormal noises or sounds from any part of the body is downright alarming. It’s generally a telltale sign that something isn’t quite right. So, when you hear crackling or popping sounds in your sinuses, should you be worried? Let’s get to know the facts.
What is the cause behind the crackling sound in the sinuses?
You could be startled the first time you hear a crackling noise from your nose. It typically sounds like bubbles in bubble wrap popping, and it can happen just from breathing. This sound is most likely a symptom of a sinus infection.
When the sinuses are healthy, moist mucus runs out freely and unnoticed. But when the body is faced with allergens and irritants, our sinuses can become inflamed. This inflammation can cause blockage to the flow of mucus, which could cause these noises. You may not have the other usual sinus infection symptoms, but this is an undeniable sign of one.
Fortunately, if you aren’t experiencing other symptoms, you may still prevent them from occurring. Early detection and diagnosis of your condition could save you from a lot of pain and discomfort in dealing with a worsened sinus infection.
What are the underlying causes of a sinus infection?
There are many culprits that could be leading to the sound you hear. Here are some of the common and likely conditions that could be the underlying cause:
Thankfully, you won’t need drastic measures to treat any of these conditions, save for a deviated septum. If your deviated septum is severe, it could cause frequent nosebleeds and recurring sinus infections. In those cases, you will need surgery to repair the damage. Unless your accompanying symptoms are severe, there are many over-the-counter medications you can take.
A rarer condition that may also be causing the noise is palatal myoclonus. Palatal myoclonus consists of two separate disorders, with essential palatal tremor causing a rhythmic clicking sound in the ear. This sound comes from the opening and closing of the Eustachian tube. Palatal myoclonus may be the least likely condition, as it’s quite rare and uncommon.
What should I do if I hear the crackling noises?
The first thing you should do is schedule an appointment with an ENT physician, so they can clearly diagnose what you have. Self-diagnosing by researching online can lead you to either over or underestimate your condition. It would be best to get an expert’s advice before diagnosing and medicating.
Sinus Infection Treatment
If you have a simple sinus infection, your doctor will put you on decongestants and saline nasal irrigation solutions. You shouldn’t go crazy with decongestants, as using it for more than three days can worsen your condition.
Your doctor may also put you on antibiotic treatment, which you will have to take for 10-14 days. After treatment, your symptoms will probably go away.
While you shouldn’t self-medicate without your doctor’s advice, you can do a few things that may alleviate sinus infection symptoms, including:
- Warm compresses may help sinus pain.
- Over-the-counter nasal sprays containing salt water help keep your nasal passages moist while unblocking congestion and treating inflammation.
- Drinking lots of fluids and hydrating sufficiently may also help moisten your nasal passages and ease blockage.
- Humidifiers should also add moisture to the air and decongest your sinuses.
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