There are a few clear indications that your child may have an ear infection, and they shouldn’t be ignored. An urgent exam and treatment are recommended if there are any signs of concern. These infections are very common in very young children because of their yet-to-be-fully-developed ears and exposure to harmful bacteria. Find out more about common ear infections in children and how they’ll be treated by a San Antonio, TX, pediatric ENT at Everyone's ENT & Sinus Center.
Ear Infections in Children
Approximately three out of four children are diagnosed with ear infections each year according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, so it is quite common. It is usually caused by bad bacteria invading the inner tissues of the ear, making it painful and irritated. Acute otitis media is the typical type of ear infection that children are diagnosed with. Infected fluid fills the area behind the eardrum, causing earache, redness, and fever. Serous otitis media is when non-infected fluid is in the ear. Chronic otitis media is a recurrent condition that could affect a child’s ability to fight off infections. Your San Antonio pediatric ENT will check your child's ear for signs of fluid and evaluate his or her hearing ability.
Ear Infection Causes and Risks
It’s likely that an ear infection in a child is due to allergies, exposure to cigarette smoke, or simply being around another infected child. Some ear problems may be caused by a foreign object that has been lodged inside of the ear canal. Undiagnosed and untreated, an ear infection presents a number of risks. Fluid in the ear may reduce the child’s ability to hear, which can affect his or her performance in school. A chronic case could cause permanent hearing loss in serious cases.
Treating a Pediatric Ear Infection
In some cases, the best treatment is to have the infection officially diagnosed by your San Antonio pediatric ENT and then monitor the case, allowing time for it to heal on its own. Some ear infections clear up on their own after a while. In other cases, a course of antibiotic medicine is required. Pressure Equalization (PE) tubes or ear tube surgery may be necessary in chronic cases. If your doctor discovers an object inside of the ear or trapped water after swimming, it will be safely removed in the office.
Have Your Child Examined
If you’re concerned that your child is complaining of ear discomfort, or struggling to hear normal sounds, don’t hesitate to visit Dr. Christine Gilliam, a pediatric ENT at Everyone's ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX, for a checkup. Call (210) 647-3838 today to schedule your appointment.
What your ENT specialists in San Antonio want you to know
If you suffer from sinus issues, you already know how annoying and uncomfortable they can be. You’ve probably tried over-the-counter medications, nasal rinses, and other products only to find your sinus issues coming back. You may want to think about a more permanent solution, sinus surgery! Your ear, nose, and throat specialists at Everyone’s ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX, wants to share how sinus surgery can help you.
Modern sinus surgery is quick, more comfortable and can get you back to living your life with minimal downtime. Thanks to modern, state-of-the-art technology and equipment, sinus surgery has become far less invasive, and far easier than ever before. These are just a few of the sinus conditions treated with sinus surgery:
- Recurrent sinusitis or sinus headaches
- Recurrent infections in your sinuses
- Nasal polyps or other abnormal sinus growths
- Fungal sinus disease
- Abnormal nasal or sinus structures or obstructions
There are many different types of sinus surgery. Many are minimally invasive and are often performed on an outpatient basis. Consider:
Balloon sinuplasty, using an ultra-thin catheter with a balloon attached to the end. The catheter is inserted into your nostril and moved up through your nasal and sinus passages. When it reaches an obstruction, the balloon is inflated, which opens the blockage so you can breathe normally again. The balloon is then deflated and the catheter and balloon are taken out.
Endoscopic surgery, using a thin tube called an endoscope; the tube is inserted into your nostril and moved up through your nasal passages and sinuses. Endoscopic surgery is often used to remove nasal and sinus polyps and other abnormal sinus growths.
There are more serious sinus conditions that may need more extensive treatment. Open sinus surgery is often indicated for cases of sinus cancer, to remove diseased tissue, or to correct structural abnormalities in your nose or sinuses.
Sinus surgery can help you get relief from a variety of recurrent, chronic sinus problems. You deserve a life of breathing well, so just pick up the phone and call your ear, nose and throat specialists at Everyone’s ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX. Call today and breathe better tomorrow!
Don’t let chronic sinusitis become the norm. We can help!
While dealing with the occasional sinus infection may be a nuisance, most of the time the symptoms go away and the infection is quickly forgotten; however, there are others who deal with chronic sinusitis, in which symptoms last over 12 weeks. If this is something you’re dealing with and you haven’t found relief from other treatment options then it’s time to talk to our San Antonio, TX otolaryngologist, Dr. Christine Gilliam, about balloon sinuplasty.
What is balloon sinuplasty?
This procedure offers a way for chronic sinusitis sufferers to finally get the relief they need that they aren’t able to get through medication or other treatment options. During this procedure, a small catheter with a deflated balloon at its end is gently guided into the blocked nasal cavity.
From there, we will carefully inflate the balloon to open up the airways and remove the blockage. We will administer saline through the catheter to remove any bacteria or pus that may be present. Once the nasal cavity has been clear, the catheter is removed but the airways remain open.
This whole procedure can be performed right here in our office as an outpatient procedure and it only takes about 60 to 90 minutes to complete.
What are the benefits of getting balloon sinuplasty?
There are many benefits to getting balloon sinuplasty in San Antonio. Not only is this an effective treatment option for those dealing with chronic sinusitis who can’t find relief through traditional methods but also it can be done without the need for surgery. Traditional sinus surgery requires incisions and even bone removal, which also means a longer recovery period for the patient. On the other hand, balloon sinuplasty is minimally invasive and doesn’t require any cutting, or removal or shaving of bones.
Those who also have trouble undergoing general anesthesia may not be good candidates for traditional sinus surgery. Luckily, those patients may still be great candidates for balloon sinuplasty since only local anesthesia is needed.
As we mentioned earlier, because this procedure is only minimally invasive not only will you be able to go home right after your treatment but also most people find that they are able to return to their normal routine and activities after only two days.
If you are dealing with chronic sinusitis then it’s time to find out more about how balloon sinuplasty could help you. Call Everyone’s ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX, to schedule a consultation with us.
What your pediatric ear, nose and throat specialist in San Antonio wants you to know
If your child has a sore throat, it’s difficult to know whether it will go away on its own, or whether it’s a sign of a more serious condition, like tonsillitis. Dr. Christine Gilliam at Everyone’s ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX wants to help you understand the difference.
Tonsillitis is a condition in which a child’s tonsils, located at the back of the throat, become inflamed. Your child can get tonsillitis from a viral or bacterial infection like strep throat. Tonsillitis can affect young children and teenagers. Common signs and symptoms to look for include:
- Swollen, red tonsils
- A white coating on your child’s tonsils
- Sore throat and difficulty swallowing
- Fever and swollen lymph nodes
- A hoarse or scratchy voice
- Chronic bad breath
- A headache or stiff neck
Very young children can also experience a pain in the stomach, drooling, lack of appetite and fussiness. If you suspect your child might have tonsillitis, you should seek out Dr. Gilliam. She may recommend:
- Antibiotic medications for less severe cases of tonsillitis
- Surgical removal of tonsils for recurrent or severe tonsillitis
Surgical removal of the tonsils, known as a tonsillectomy is the one sure way to prevent recurrent, chronic tonsillitis. A tonsillectomy is performed in the operating room and your child will go home the same day. Before the procedure your child will receive a sedative medication and then be placed under general anesthesia in the operating room. The tonsillectomy procedure takes about 30 minutes with recovery time requiring an average of between 1 and 4 hours.
There are many helpful things you and your child can do to prevent tonsillitis. Remember to have your child:
- Wash their hands frequently and thoroughly several times a day
- Avoid sharing utensils, glasses, food and beverages with others
- Use a new toothbrush after an illness, especially tonsillitis
- Cover their mouth with a tissue when sneezing or coughing
For more detailed information about tonsillitis and other common pediatric conditions, please visit the pediatric ENT page on the website at http://www.everyonesent.com/pediatric-ent.html
Tonsillitis is painful, and can lead to other chronic medical problems. If your child has tonsillitis, don’t delay. Instead, call Dr. Gilliam at Everyone’s ENT & Sinus Center in San Antonio, TX. Get some help for your child by calling today!
How your San Antonio, TX, doctor can help with allergy testing
What You Need to Know About Allergy Testing
The itchy watery eyes, runny nose and sneezing are just a few symptoms that can be causing allergies. Allergies effect people all year long, like in spring, when flowers bloom and pollen is abundant, or winter, when we all spend most of our time indoors and away from the cold.
If you suffer from the symptoms mentioned above, you need to call your San Antonio doctor. You will need to test for allergies to find out exactly what triggers allergies.
Your allergist is likely to recommend allergy testing if you exhibit:
- Itchy skin, a rash or eczema
- Itchy eyes, nose and throat
- Nasal congestion, runny nose and watery eyes
- Coughing, wheezing or chest congestion
- Cramping, diarrhea or vomiting after eating certain foods
- A severe response to an insect sting or bite
Common allergy tests include:
- Skin tests: The doctor injects you with a small dose of allergen. If you see a rash or swelling within 20 minutes, this is an indication that you're allergic to the substance you were injected with. If there is no response, then you're not allergic.
- Challenge tests: This is similar to the skin test where you're exposed to an allergen. If you inhale or ingest a small amount of allergen, this will help doctors determine what foods or medications you're allergic to.
- Blood tests: Your doctor will draw blood and send it to a laboratory. This test takes a bit longer than the other tests, but it is more accurate.
Once your San Antonio doctor have identified what triggers your allergies, there are several ways to control and treat symptoms.
Here are some options you may want to consider:
- Allergy shots, usually given every week.
- Sublingual drop therapy, which you can administer at home.
If you are interested in learning more about allergy testing, call our San Antonio, TX office at (210) 647-3838 today!
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