The passages that begin with your nostril lead to a network of nasal passages and cavities in behind the face. These are known as sinuses. While you have a number of sinuses in your body, those in your face, which are known more technically as the paranasal sinuses are the most well known. Your sinuses are pockets of air, which are found in between the bones in your face and skull. Our paranasal sinuses come in pairs, with one of each pair located on either side of the face. You have four of these pairs:
Sinus Anatomy – Paranasal Sinuses
- Maxillary Sinuses: These are found directly in behind the check.
- Ethmoid Sinuses: These are smaller pockets of air, often described as having the appearance of honeycomb.
- Frontal Sinuses: Your upper uppermost sinuses. These are placed directly behind your fore head.
- Sphenoid Sinuses: These are further back, close to the brain.
Pictures are worth a thousand words however, so without further ado, here’s what the paranasal sinuses look like:
What Do Sinuses Do?
The sinuses play a number of important roles in the human body. Seeing as we’re constantly bumping into things, the sinuses, not just in the head, but throughout the body, provide space for the body to absorb the shock. Sinuses are also hugely important when it comes to our voice, helping the voice to resonate so that we can actually be heard. On top of that, they humidify the air that we breath (which is why it’s important to breath in through the nose and not the mouth) and clear away excess dust and other crap that comes up our nose when we breath in.
It’s perhaps best to look at it from another angle. Without our sinuses, when sustaining a blow, the shock would travel through the body causing damage to our vital organs much more easily. When trying to speak, you would have to put your ear right up next to the voice box to actually hear anything (voice resonates in both the chest and paranasal sinuses). Without our sinuses we would also pick up more respiratory illnesses and generally get sick more of the time.
So thank heavens for sinuses, even though at times we wish we could just cut them out, such as in the case of sinusitis and nasal congestion. And remember that it’s important to take care of our sinuses. Sinus pressure points give us one great, effective and free method of caring for our sinuses, helping to relieve sinus pressure and making sure they’re doing their job effectively.
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