Sinus Infections and the Natural Approach

Dealing with Sinus Infections

Definition: What is a Sinus Infection?

“A sinus infection occurs when the sinuses (or, more specifically, the mucous membranes) become inflamed and swell up because of a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection. Sinus blockage often precedes this inflammation.

The terms “sinus infection” and “sinusitis” are commonly used interchangeably, but sinusitis simply refers to the inflammation of the sinuses, with or without an infection. The medical term for sinusitis is rhinosinusitis (“rhino” meaning “nose”) because the illness affects the mucous membranes in both the sinuses and nose.” (American college of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology)

Frequency of sinus infections in the US:

 Each year an estimated 31 million Americans are diagnosed with Sinus Infections.



 Symptoms of sinus infections are often similar to the common cold or allergies, but there are some notable differences (in particular widespread sinus pressure and pain) that can help in diagnosing the illness.

The hallmark symptoms of acute sinus infections are nasal congestion and blockage, a nasal discharge that is thick with a yellow to green coloration, decreased sense of smell, and a feeling of pain, pressure, or fullness in the face.

Other symptoms may include:

  • Headache
  • Fever greater than 100.4 degrees F (note that infants under 3 months of age who have a fever should be taken to a doctor as soon as possible)
  • Fatigue
  • Cough and sore throat
  • Loss of the sense of smell
  • Postnasal drip, or mucus that drips down the throat, (especially if it is green or yellow in color that is a sign of an infection)
  • Bad breath (halitosis)
  • Ear pressure or fullness
  • Tooth pain (1,3) (Source: NNS, Scottish Government)

Normal Treatment 

  1. Antibiotics. Antibiotics are standard treatments for bacterial sinus infections. …
  2. Nasal decongestant sprays. Topical nasal decongestants can be helpful if used for no more than three to four days. …
  3. Antihistamines. …
  4. Nasal saline washes. …

Herbal Treatment

Recently I had a sinus infection with several of the symptoms listed above, sinus headache, fever, postnasal drip, ear pressure and such. I did not want another round of antibiotics and dug a little deeper in my research for treating sinus infections naturally.

Here is what I found:



 You can use Echinacea to fight against bacterial and viral infections, it is a all natural antibiotic, but it also lowers pain and inflammation, making it an excellent treatment for both the cause and symptoms of sinusitis. Echinacea works in conjunction with the bodies own defenses and strengthens the body’s immune system to fight bacteria that may cause bacterial sinusitis.



 This herb acts as a mucous membrane tonic, and specifically addresses congested secretions of the mucous membranes of the sinuses. If your drainage is green or yellow the color is indicative of a sinus infection, especially combined with a fever. Goldenseal is both cooling for the system and antimicrobial as well. Because of th at it makes an excellent choice for such a condition

Echinacea/Goldenseal combination:  Herbal Secrets Echinacea & Goldenseal Root - 450 Mg 250 Caps with Echinacea Purpurea, Goldenseal, Burdock Root & Cayenne Pepper Supports Healthy Immune Function and Overall Well-being

Dr. Christopher Hobbs says this: “Echinacea is also considered one of the most effective (herbs) for infections such as strep throat, infected wounds, urinary tract infections, bronchitis, and of course, it is often the herb of choice for colds and flu. Modern science has shown it to have strong “surface immune” activating properties.”

Nasal Washes with Colloidal silver spray:  

Stephen Frank writes concerning Sinus Infections:What you want is a broad spectrum antimicrobial that kills all types of bacteria as evenly as possible so that you don’t just eliminate the weak ones, and one that will also kill fungus.

As it turns out, pure aqueous colloidal silver is both antifungal and antibacterial (although it is more effective against bacteria than it is against fungi). It kills some bacteria better than others, but it does kill them all.

When pure aqueous colloidal silver of sufficient potency (greater than 35 ppm) is mixed with a surfactant (such as polysorbate 20) to enhance penetration into cells, it is phenomenally effective, showing kill rates greater than 1 million in less than 20 minutes.

Clinical studies have shown that enhanced colloidal silver can terminate simple sinus infections in a week or less, which is far better than sinus surgery or antibiotics.” (

Elderberry Tincture:

 Black Elderberry Alcohol-Free Liquid Extract, Organic Black Elderberry (Sambucus Nigra) Dried Berry Tincture Supplement (2 FL OZ)

 Elderberry is used for its antioxidant activity, to lower cholesterol, to improve vision, to boost the immune system, to improve heart health, and for coughs, colds, flu, bacterial and viral infections and tonsillitis. This is excellent to take as a daily tonic to strengthen the immune system against the flu.


I started taking a combination of Echinacea/Golden Seal, (2 capsules every 8 hrs.), rinsing my sinus with Colloidal silver spray (several times per day), drinking elderberry tea with added Elderberry tincture (Several cups of tea per day and the tincture at least once).

For me, on the second day the sinus headaches reduced to almost nothing. My fever reduced after the second day also. I did still have sinus pressure and drainage for another 5 days and continued to have a small amount of pressure for the next few days. All total it took about 10 days of treatment for this to relieve all of symptoms.

This was for me of course and it may be you will have a different result. Let me encourage you to check with your health care professional before trying self treatment. I am not a medical doctor, I am a Certified Herbalist.