NARRATOR: Sinus pressure isalways a nuisance,but how do you cope when itinterferes with work?It sends attorney Pete Chambersto the doctor's office at leastfour times a year.
PETE CHAMBERS: Because I get sobusy, I don't want to stopand get in here.When you have sinus pressure,you don't breathethrough your nose,you breathe through your mouth.And so it just ends up dryingyou out so muchand your vocal cordsthat by end of the day,you know, I'm a lawyerwithout a voice.
NARRATOR: Allergist PaulRabinowitz sees lots of patientslike Pete.PAUL RABINOWITZ: Normally, theysay, I have sinus pain.I have sinus congestion.Physiologically, it's allthe same.
PETE CHAMBERS: How are you?
PAUL RABINOWITZ: Good to seeyou.
PETE CHAMBERS: Good to see you.
PAUL RABINOWITZ: You're backagain.
PETE CHAMBERS: I am.
PAUL RABINOWITZ: So lookingat your sinus x-ray,there's blockage in your nosethat's blocking the sinage ductsthat drain from the sinusescausing this pressurebuild up in your sinuses.There are a number of causesof sinus pressurethat includes underlyingallergy, which we callallergic rhinitis, that includesobstruction of the nasal sinuspassages, and that can alsobe from irritants.
NARRATOR: Dust buildupand extremely dry airare possible workplaceirritants, no matter what typeof environment you work in.
PAUL RABINOWITZ: Then I havepeople come in who workin old buildings.The old ventilation systems maybe full of dust and mold or eventhe factthat if the air is heatedin the winter months,the dry air can be veryirritatingto the nasal and sinus passages.
NARRATOR: When your sinusesbother you at work, what do youdo?
PAUL RABINOWITZ: You can buysomeover the counter saline nosespray, keep your nosemoisturized.Buy overthe counterantihistamine/decongestantproducts.From there, if that's notsuccessful,to come to an allergistor somebody who specializesin sinus problems.
NARRATOR: For flight attendantGreg Shoemake,allergies and high altitudescause tremendous sinus pressure.
GREG SHOEMAKE: You're tryingto keep a smile on your faceand you're just,your head's about to explodeand you can't breathe but you dowhat you can.
NARRATOR: Greg now gets relieffrom monthly allergy shots.For patients like Petewith chronic sinus pressure,there may not be a quick fix.
PAUL RABINOWITZ: Lotsof saline irrigation, medicationto reduce inflammationand mucus,and work on the humidificationin the office.
NARRATOR: Pete takes his doctor'sadvice back to the law officeand remembers to takehis medications consistently.
PETE CHAMBERS: A littlewhile ago I did use the nosespray again, which always helps.
NARRATOR: He makes adjustmentsto his work environment.
PETE CHAMBERS: I do need to movemy desk around because I've gotthis air vent right here.And it's great in the summerbecause, you know,it cools me off.Always got a water bottleon my desk,always have a handkerchiefin my back pocket.It can make you less patient,you know?I mean, what I do is verystressful.
NARRATOR: Pete followshis doctor's advice even when heleaves the office.
PETE CHAMBERS: I thinkafter today, sittingunder the heat vent,talking all day,losing my voice,I'm going to go work out,sit in the steam room.I try to get over there as muchI can because the steam clearsmy sinuses, helps my throatso I can have a good startthe next day.
NARRATOR: To manage your sinuspressure,try over the counter remediesand adjustments to your workenvironment.If you don't get relief,it may be time to visityour doctor.