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(HealthDay News) -- Sinus infections can be caused by either a virus or a bacterium. While bacterial infections respond to antibiotics, viral infections -- usually stemming from a common cold -- just need to run their course.

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases offers these suggestions to help reduce symptoms of a sinus infection:

* Take a decongestant to help a runny or stuffy nose.
* Over-the-counter saline nasal sprays can help with nasal congestion, but should only be used for a few days.
* Take a pain reliever to soothe pain associated with sinus infection.
* Apply gentle heat to the sinuses to ease discomfort.
* Breathe steam from a vaporizer or hot cup of water to help soothe inflamed sinuses.