Ear, nose and throat specialists diagnose and treat conditions related to those same body parts. They can perform routine checkups to make sure everything is working properly. They can also catch health problems early and advise about any changes that need to be made.
How do you know when it is time to visit your ear nose throat specialist? Here are some indicators to look for.
Loss of Hearing
Hearing loss is something that happens over time, but you should look out for gradual hearing loss and changes in how well you hear. If you have to turn up the volume on the radio more and more each year or you struggle to hear what others are saying, you may need to see the ENT specialist to have your hearing checked. Treatment can help slow down the hearing loss and to help prevent a complete loss of hearing.
Ringing in the Ears
The condition known as tinnitus is common enough that most people don’t even realize they have it until a specialist examines them. You can tell that you are suffering from tinnitus if you notice a ringing in your ear that persists. This is different from a ringing that happens following a loud noise. If the ringing disappears after a short while, it’s not tinnitus you have but rather temporary hearing loss or temporary ear damage. Tinnitus stays with you, and that is a serious problem that needs to be treated by an ENT specialist.
The ringing could be caused by a trauma to the ears or by an extremely loud noise. It can also happen when you have an infection or if you are experiencing anything else that could be damaging to your hearing.
You may think you have a common cold but could actually be suffering from sinus problems. Many sinus problems are mistaken for smaller issues that people expect to go away.
However, sinus issues can often indicate a larger medical problem at work. Do you feel like you have headaches frequently? Do you have trouble smelling or do you suffer from constant fever or dental pain? All of these may be simple, minor problems on their own, but if they are chronic, if they persist and they keep coming back, then that is something you need to be concerned about.
Your ENT specialist may treat your sinusitis in any number of ways, and the method used will depend on what is causing the problem. So, a viral infection will be treated differently than a bacterial or a fungal one, even though they may all produce very similar symptoms.
Having a sore throat is no big deal, right? In some cases, that’s true, and the soreness could just be occurring because you have a fever, cold or some other minor infection. However, if the sore throat persists, then you need to see the ENT specialist.
That’s true of a lot of these symptoms. They may seem minor and insignificant if they appear and then disappear shortly, but if they continue for weeks, that is cause for concern. You may want to see an ENT specialist before you get to that point where you have been suffering for so long.
If you notice that there is something different about the way your nose, throat or ears operate or are formed when compared to the average person, that may mean you would be wise to visit your ENT specialist. You may suffer from some health issues due to a deviated nasal septum or some other aberration.
To treat deviated nasal septum, you’ll need to see the specialist. It’s not the kind of medical problem that you can deal with using over the counter drugs or at-home care.
In cases where you realize you have breathing difficulties or blockages or are suffering from health issues caused by an aberration in the ear, nose or throat, be sure to schedule a visit with a specialist. You can get help that could greatly improve your quality of life.
The training that ear, nose and throat doctors receive helps them to accurately analyze and treat a variety of medical conditions. If you have any questions or concern that you may need to see an ENT specialist or you are noticing persistent symptoms, then you should make a visit. It is always better to be safe about these sorts of things and to protect your health if there is any risk there.
You may not need to make a visit if your symptoms are minor. You can always call your specialists offices and get some questions answered. That can help you to avoid making unnecessary visits and to get the assistance that you need.