Healthy sinuses are empty chambers in the face and forehead that have multiple functions including moisturizing air and acting as protective shock absorbers in case of trauma; however, these chambers are susceptible to inflammation and infection that can be severe enough to cause chronic problems. This inflammation, called sinusitis, has many potential causes including bacteria, allergies, immune problems, polyps, and other structural abnormalities that may become increasingly problematic over time. Whatever the cause, sinusitis can create frustrating symptoms including nasal blockage, headaches, facial or tooth pain, drainage from the nose or down the back of the throat, and problems with smell and taste. A chronic cough can also develop, particularly in children.
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