The majority of sinus infections are acute and not serious. They should resolve in under two weeks, and most will resolve within a week. However, occasionally, a sinus infection can contribute to more severe illness, or become more severe in certain patients. So, how do you know if a sinus infection is serious?
First, if your sinus infection symptoms last longer than two weeks, this is a sign that you may need antibiotics. While this does not necessarily mean the infection is serious, it is one possible indicator, especially if you are experiencing worsening symptoms. Of course, there is a chance that the symptoms you are experiencing are not actually a sinus infection, but even so, that could mean you have a more concerning illness and require adequate treatment.
Second, some sinus infections do cause a fever. However, this fever is generally low-grade in both children and adults. Therefore, if you have a high fever, this means that either you have a different illness or that your sinus infection has become more severe. In these cases, it is best to immediately seek out medical care.
Finally, if you begin to have problems breathing or symptoms in your chest area, this could indicate a more severe infection such as bronchitis or pneumonia. While it is not a guarantee, if you are also experiencing a high fever or other concerning symptoms, it is likely not a sinus infection, or the sinus infection caused another infection.
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