So you’re having pain in your neck lately. Most people will think it’s from a neck source, but what about the sinuses? Is this possible?
“Chronic sinusitis can cause neck pain,” says Dr. Stacey Silvers, MD, of Madison ENT & Facial Plastic Surgery in NYC, who is board certified in otolaryngology; one of her specialties is sinus surgery. I interviewed her for this post.
Dr. Silvers continues, “The direct cause may not be known. There are no sinuses in the back of the head and there is no direct causation of the symptoms. However, neck pain can occasionally be a complaint with acute or chronic sinus infections.
“The neck is the support structure for the head. When the head is congested, inflamed and blocked, the neck has more to support, and the way we support our head may differ depending on the degree of discomfort.”
It’s also possible that, due to the sinusitis being, figuratively speaking, a pain in the neck, the patient assumes slumped posture or excessive sleep—both of which can cause tension in the neck muscles.
See if some self-massage won’t help alleviate the discomfort. Maybe a brisk walk for five or 10 minutes will do the trick, if the discomfort is musculoskeletal in origin. Briskly walking will loosen up these muscles and increase blood flow through them. A warm compress may also help.