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By Otolaryngology Plastic Surgery Associates
January 28, 2021
Category: ENT Health
What Is Sinus Surgery?Dealing with chronic sinus issues can make day-to-day life difficult. The blocked nasal passages, trouble sleeping, chronic snoring, and more. Usually, an ENT doctor will prescribe medications and other conservative treatment options first to see if they do the trick; however, more severe cases may not respond to medications and other therapies. When this happens, surgery may be the best option.

Should I consider sinus surgery?

Before considering whether you could benefit from surgery, it’s important to talk with your ENT if you are dealing with severe or recurring sinus infection issues. Your ENT will be able to provide you with a variety of options based on the cause of your sinus problems; however, if nonsurgical treatment options aren’t helping, then sinus surgery may be recommended.

There are many reasons people get sinus surgery. Surgery can be used to treat chronic sinusitis, nasal polyps, or a deviated septum. Symptoms include nasal blockages, congestion, stuffy nose, pain, and pressure around the nose and eyes, nasal drainage, and headaches.

What types of sinus surgery are available?

Here are some of the most commonly performed sinus surgeries,

Septoplasty

If you are dealing with symptoms related to a deviated septum, your ENT may recommend a septoplasty, which allows us to fix the wall of cartilage that divides the two nasal cavities (known as the septum). If someone is dealing with chronic sinusitis or chronic nasal congestion due to a deviated septum, then septoplasty may provide them with relief.

Balloon sinuplasty

This minimally invasive procedure can alleviate chronic sinusitis. A balloon is inserted and inflated into the nasal passages to open up the cavity to flush out mucus and bacteria. Most people experience immediate relief, and relief can last to two years or more after this procedure is performed.

Rhinoplasty

Most people assume a rhinoplasty, or “nose job”, is simply a cosmetic treatment; however, sometimes this procedure is performed for functional reasons. A functional rhinoplasty allows our ENT team to correct structural abnormalities and issues with the structure of the nose to improve airflow and nasal breathing.

Endoscopic sinus surgery

This is one of the most common surgical procedures that an ENT performs. Endoscopic surgery involves less invasive surgical techniques, which results in fewer side effects, complications, and downtime. This surgery can help reconstruct the nasal passages and also remove excess or problematic tissue or bone to improve breathing and to alleviate blockages.

If you are dealing with persistent or severe sinus problems that are impacting your quality of life, then it’s time to talk with an ENT doctor to discuss your treatment options and determine whether sinus surgery is right for you.
By Otolaryngology Plastic Surgery Associates
January 14, 2021
Category: ENT Care
Impacted EarwaxDealing with a buildup of earwax? Find out how earwax impaction can affect your hearing.

Earwax is important for the health of the ear, as it helps trap bacteria and other particles that could affect the health and function of the eardrum. So, while you might think that earwax is simply a nuisance that you need to get rid of, it’s best to leave your ears alone. After all, your ears are self-cleaning. In fact, using Q-tips in your ears can simply just push earwax further into the ear canal, leading to impaction. If you are dealing with impacted earwax you may experience,
  • Muffled hearing
  • A feeling of fullness in the ears
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • Ear pain
  • Dizziness
If an infection develops you may notice a severe earache, drainage comes from the ear or a fever. If you develop symptoms of an infection, you must see your ENT as soon as possible for treatment.

What should I do if I have an earwax impaction?

If you have impacted earwax you may try over-the-counter kits to rinse out the ears and remove the earwax; however, it’s best to have a qualified ENT doctor examine your ear and not just determine if your symptoms are due to impacted earwax but also to safely remove the excess wax.

If you are dealing with impacted earwax you mustn’t stick a cotton swab or other tools into your ears to try and remove the earwax, as this could damage or puncture the eardrum.

Your ENT doctor has special tools and suction devices to be able to flush out the earwax buildup and to clean out the ears. Some people are prone to earwax buildup, particularly seniors. If this is something that you deal with regularly then your doctor may recommend special ear drops that can break up the earwax.

If you’re having trouble with impacted earwax, or earwax buildup talk with your ENT specialist about safe strategies to keep your ears clean. While there are tools that can be effective and safe, when used properly, you may wish to turn to a qualified doctor to find out the best way to keep your ears clean.
By Otolaryngology Plastic Surgery Associates
December 28, 2020
Category: ENT Care
Tags: Earwax  
How To Safely Clean Out Your EarwaxDid you know that your ears are self-cleaning? So, if you find yourself reaching for that cotton swab in your bathroom tonight you might want to put it down. Your ears are extremely low maintenance and very rarely need to be cleaned. Of course, older adults may be prone to excessive earwax buildup, which can lead to impaction or obstruction. In these cases, you may want to turn to an ENT doctor to safely clear out impacted wax.
 
If your ears feel a little blocked or your hearing is muffled, then you could have a buildup of wax. This is known as impaction. Impacted earwax can make the affected ear feel full. You may notice changes in your hearing, dizziness, or a ringing in your ears. If so, it’s time to see your ENT doctor.
 
Can I clean out my ears myself?

While there are certain earwax removal kits on the market that you can try, the best and safest way to have wax buildup removed is by seeing a qualified doctor. An otolaryngologist will have the proper irrigation tools to remove the blockage with complications. Of course, if you do choose to clean your ears yourself you may wish to try:
 
An earwax softener: You can pick up these eardrops at your local drugstore. Make sure to follow the exact instructions on the package. Leave the drops in your ears for the amount of time mentioned on the package and then rinse out the ears or simply let the drops drain out.
 
A syringe: Some kits contain little rubber syringes that you can fill with saline or warm water. This over-the-counter irrigation system can take time to soften the earwax, but you may find it helpful with more mild impactions.
 
All we ask is that you do not try and use a cotton swab to clean the inside of your ear, which will only push the wax further and could damage the eardrum. Earwax softeners and these syringe and irritation systems are your best bet if you want to try and remove earwax buildup yourself. If you are prone to earwax buildup you can schedule regular appointments with your ENT doctor to have your ears cleaned properly by a professional.
 
If you have questions about how to safely and properly clean excess earwax an ENT doctor can answer any of your questions.
By Otolaryngology Plastic Surgery Associates
December 09, 2020
Category: ENT Conditions
Tags: Dry Mouth  
he Possible Causes of Dry Mouth
Feeling like your mouth is as dry as the Sahara? While dry mouth is fairly common if this is a problem you are dealing with regularly then you may be wondering what’s going on and why it’s happening to you. Common causes of dry mouth include:
 
Medications
There are some medications in which dry mouth is a common side effect. Dry mouth is more common in allergy meds, anti-anxiety drugs, anti-depressants, cold medications, acne treatments, high blood pressure medication, asthma inhalers, or muscle relaxants.
 
Certain Health Disorders
Dry mouth could also be indicative of a health condition. Those with HIV, diabetes, anemia, high blood pressure, or hypertension are more likely to deal with dry mouth.
 
Dehydration
Did you know that most Americans aren’t drinking enough water? If you are one of them, then it’s only natural that you’re going to deal with dry mouth. If you are losing fluids through vomiting or diarrhea, or if you are participating in sports during the summer, you must be consuming enough fluids and staying hydrated to offset the increased loss of fluid.
 
Lifestyle habits
Certain habits could also be contributing to your dry mouth. If you are a mouth breather this is a common reason you could be dealing with this pesky problem. Those who smoke or use tobacco products are also more likely to deal with dry mouth.
 
What are the signs of dry mouth?
While it might be obvious that a dry mouth will feel, well dry, there are other symptoms associated with dry mouth including,
  • Sore or irritated throat
  • Excessive thirst
  • Changes in taste
Less obvious symptoms include hoarseness or dry eyes.
 
When should I see a doctor?
We all know that not drinking enough water or even being stressed out can lead to the occasional bout of dry mouth, but if you are dealing with this problem regularly it’s important to see a doctor since this could be a sign of an underlying health problem that will most likely require treatment.
 
If you are dealing with persistent dry mouth an ENT doctor can determine what’s going on and how to best combat it. Since dry mouth has the ability to lead to bad breath, decay, and gum disease, it’s a good idea to get this problem under control.
By Otolaryngology Plastic Surgery Associates
November 23, 2020
Category: ENT Health
Tags: Adenoids  
What Are AdenoidsWhen we think about the first line of defense against infection we often think about the tonsils; however, the adenoids also play a part in protecting against infection. Together the tonsils and adenoids make up the lymphatic system and stop viruses and bacteria from entering the mouth and nose. While the tonsils are found in the back of the throat the adenoids sit in the far back of the throat behind the nose. Unfortunately, just as tonsils can get infected and cause problems, so too can adenoids.

What causes enlarged adenoids?

Since adenoids frequently come into contact with germs, it’s common for adenoids to swell a bit to get rid of an infection. Allergies also have the ability to cause enlarged adenoids. While the swelling will often go away on its own, there are instances where the swelling can actually turn into an infection.

What are the symptoms of enlarged adenoids?

While tonsil problems will mostly affect the throat, if you are dealing with enlarged adenoids most of the symptoms are concentrated in the nasal cavity. Those with enlarged adenoids may experience:
  • Trouble breathing through the nose
  • Mouth breathing
  • Dry lips and mouth (as a result of mouth breathing)
  • Snoring
  • Persistent bad breath
  • Chronic or persistent sinus infections
  • Ear infections
  • Obstructive sleep apnea (pauses in the breath that happening while asleep)
Should I have my adenoids removed?

It’s important to talk with your ENT doctor if you or your child are dealing with persistent symptoms of enlarged adenoids. We will ask you questions about the symptoms you are experiencing and go through your medical history to determine whether you could benefit from an adenoidectomy. It may be time to considering having your adenoids removed if:
  • You are dealing with obstructive sleep apnea or poor sleep as a result of enlarged adenoids
  • You are dealing with recurring, antibiotic-resistant ear infections
  • You have recurring adenoid infections that don’t respond to medication
  • Your symptoms are impacting your life, including work or school performance
In some cases, your ENT doctor may recommend getting both the adenoids and tonsils removed at the same time.

If you or your child is dealing with enlarged adenoids or other problems that affect your breathing, you must see an ENT doctor that can provide you with the treatment you need. 




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