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What Are the Symptoms of Sinus Pressure?

author image Emily DeSerio
Emily DeSerio has been a freelance writer since November 2009. DeSerio works in the mental health field as a clinical social worker. She began her higher level education at the University of South Florida (USF) with a B.A. in English and went on to complete a Master of Social Work degree at USF as well.
What Are the Symptoms of Sinus Pressure?
Headache is a common symptom of sinus pressure. Photo Credit headache image by Jarek Miarka from <a href="http://www.fotolia.com">Fotolia.com</a>

Sinus pressure is a common result of nasal congestion due to allergies or the common cold. The sinus cavity is made of multiple chambers lined with soft tissue to filter the air before reaching the lungs. If sinus tissue is irritated it responds with excessive mucus and swelling. As the sinuses swell, they restrict the normal drainage of mucus and create pressure that can affect almost every area of the head.


A headache caused by sinus pressure is typically a dull, throbbing pain deep within the face. Many times the headache is felt behind the eyes or nose and is sensitive to touch. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, a headache caused by sinus pressure will worsen when you bend over or get up quickly. Sinus headaches usually begin upon waking and improve as the day progresses. Headaches caused by sinus pressure are commonly treated with a decongestant such as phenylephrine and a pain reliever such as acetaminophen.

Blurred Vision

One of the largest sinus cavities is located directly behind the eyes. A common symptom of sinus pressure is blurred vision. However, if your vision is blurry and you experience lightheadedness, seek medical attention immediately as this can be related to another condition. The eyes may also become sensitive to touch if you have sinus pressure. Seeing floaters, stars and small light bursts can also transpire due to excessive sinus pressure. If floaters continue for more than 24 hours, especially after treating the sinus pressure, seek medical advice.

Tooth Pain

The sinuses are directly above the roof of the mouth. As the pressure builds in the sinuses, it can begin to affect the roots of the upper-teeth. The tooth pain can feel like a cavity or a common toothache with throbbing and sharp pain. Most of the time, tooth pain associated with sinus pressure comes on suddenly and may make the teeth feel highly sensitive, according to the Family Dental Gentle Care website. If you have not experienced tooth pain until you developed sinus pressure, it is most likely related to the sinuses. If you are concerned about the tooth pain, an x-ray at your dentist can determine if something else is causing the pain.

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