Understanding How Military Service Can Cause Chronic Sinusitis

Understanding How Military Service Can Cause Chronic Sinusitis

Posted On: Jun 12, 2024

Table of Content

  • Introduction
  • Risk Factors for Chronic Sinusitis in Military Personnel
  • Chronic Sinusitis Symptoms
  • Treatment Options for Chronic Sinusitis
  • FAQs
  • Conclusion


Serving in the military exposes individuals to many risk factors. These risks may cause chronic sinusitis, a common disease among veterans. This blog investigates the link between military service and chronic sinusitis. It covers possible reasons and compares them to cases in civilian life. It also discusses issues with VA disability.


Chronic sinusitis is a condition with inflammation in the sinuses. It also has blockage for at least 12 weeks. It causes a range of unpleasant symptoms. Chronic sinusitis may strike anybody, yet it especially affects veterans. This article explores the causes of chronic sinusitis. It explains how they relate to military service.

Risk Factors for Chronic Sinusitis in Military Personnel

Chronic sinusitis is more common among military personnel. This is due to the specific problems they face. In this table, we can see the pros and cons:

Risk Factor


Exposure to Irritants

Airborne particles, including allergens, spark immediate sinus inflammation and irritation. Service members may encounter these during training, deployment, and war.

Upper Respiratory Infections

Being often exposed to germs. Close quarters with others expose you to upper respiratory infection risks. It can also make you prone to colds. These can make you more likely to have sinusitis.

Changes in Air Pressure

Inflammation of the sinuses may result from pressure imbalances. Flying causes these imbalances due to sudden altitude changes.


Dehydration thickens mucus. This makes it harder for the sinuses to drain. It also raises the risk of infection. It's often difficult to stay hydrated when on deployment.

Facial Injuries

War and training can cause facial injuries. These injuries may harm the sinuses' structure. This damage can lead to chronic drainage issues.

Chronic Sinusitis Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of chronic sinusitis may be very annoying, and they include:

  • Facial pain and pressure
  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Postnasal drip
  • Cough (often worse at night)
  • Fatigue
  • Reduced sense of smell or taste
  • Difficulty breathing through the nose

Treatment Options for Chronic Sinusitis

Effective methods can treat chronic sinusitis. As symptoms worsen, healthcare providers may consider several treatment options, such as:

  1. Medications: Medications for bacterial infections include nasal corticosteroids, decongestants, and antibiotics.
  2. Nasal saline irrigation: Flushing the nasal passages with saline helps to loosen mucus. It also clears congestion.
  3. Allergy medications: Antihistamines or allergy injections may help reduce sinusitis if allergies play a role.
  4. Surgery: In extreme cases, you may need surgery. It's opened the sinuses or removes obstructions.


Can chronic sinusitis be prevented?

Reduce irritation by removing or lowering contact with triggering elements. These include certain irritants. It's essential to drink enough water and stay very clean.

What are the long-term effects of chronic sinusitis?

Neglected chronic sinusitis may cause headaches. It can also cause lethargy and maybe sleep apnea if not treated.

What resources are available for veterans with chronic sinusitis?

Veterans suffer from chronic sinusitis due to their service. They may get healthcare and disability benefits via the VA.


Chronic sinusitis is a typical problem that veterans have to deal with. Veterans may take charge of their health. They can do this by making efficient use of treatment choices for sinusitis. To do this, they can learn about the symptoms, risk factors, and treatments. See a VA healthcare provider about your treatment choices. They can help you if you're a veteran dealing with chronic sinusitis.