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Posts for category: ENT Care

By Century Ear, Nose, Throat, Head & Neck Surgery
October 07, 2019
Category: ENT Care
Tags: Swimmer’s Ear  

While swimmer’s ear may sound akin to having a lucky rabbit’s foot, the opposite is actually true. This painful condition, also known as acute otitis externa, causes infection and inflammation of the outer ear. As you may be able to guess from the name alone, this ear infection is often the result of too much water getting into the ears, whether you are an avid swimmer or you just drenched yourself in a hot shower for too long. Of course, there are other reasons why you may be prone to these infections.

Sure, this infection tends to be more common in children and teens, but if you happen to clean your ears regularly with cotton swabs, if you end up damaging or cutting the skin of the ear canal or if you’ve been diagnosed with eczema of the ear canal, then you too could be at risk for developing this type of ear infection.

Once the water is trapped inside the ear canal, it leaves the ear susceptible to bacteria and infection. If you have swimmer’s ear, you most likely know it because the inflammation causes pain. Since it is indeed an infection, it’s important that you turn to your otolaryngologist for proper medical attention. Not only will the treatment help eliminate your pain and discomfort but it will also stop the infection from spreading.

Besides pain, you may also notice that your ear feels as if there's fluid in it, which may also be drained. Since swimmer’s ear is an infection, you may also notice that the lymph nodes around the neck and ears are swollen. Some patients even report minor hearing loss. Of course, a young child can’t often describe their symptoms, but you may notice your little one tugging at their ear, unable to sleep, or more irritable and cranky. If you notice these symptoms then it’s time to take your child to the ENT doctor.

What can happen if swimmer’s ear isn’t treated properly? You may experience chronic or recurring infections. You may find that even if the condition clears up that your hearing loss has not fully returned. There may even be damage to the bones and cranial nerves.

When you come in to see your ENT specialist, they will most likely prescribe eardrops to treat the infection. They may also clean out the infected ear canal. These eardrops will serve to kill the bacteria and reduce pain and inflammation. Make sure to follow the instructions for your medication and continue to use it even once your symptoms have gone away, or according to what your physician has prescribed. This will ensure that all the bacteria are destroyed and that you won’t develop another infection.

Protect the health of your ears. If you think you may have swimmer’s ear, or if you are experiencing any kind of ear pain, it’s a good idea to play it safe and visit an ear, nose and throat specialist right away for care.

By Century Ear, Nose, Throat, Head & Neck Surgery
September 10, 2019
Category: ENT Care
Tags: Allergies  

Millions of Americans struggle with allergies these days. Triggered by a wide range of allergens, such as dust, pollen, or pet dander, allergies can interfere with your quality of life by producing uncomfortable symptoms such as sneezing, congestion, scratchy throat, shortness of breath. If you are struggling with allergies, help is available. The doctors here at Century Ear, Nose & Throat, Head & Neck Surgery in Orland Park, IL, are your medical professionals for the treatment of allergies.

Common Allergens

Allergies can be triggered by a wide range of substances. Examples of common allergens include:

  • Pollen
  • House dust
  • Pet dander
  • Certain foods
  • Medications
  • Mold

Allergy Symptoms

Several symptoms can result when a person experiences an allergic reaction to a particular substance. Common allergy symptoms include:

  • Hives
  • Watery eyes
  • Itchy eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Sinus congestion
  • Scratchy throat
  • Shortness of breath

Allergy Treatments

Today, there are many treatments that are available for easing the symptoms of allergies, and your Orland Park ENT doctor can recommend the appropriate treatment for your situation. Some of these options include medications, saline nasal rinses, and immunotherapy. While medication and other treatment options target the symptoms caused by allergies, immunotherapy works to prevent allergic reactions by helping the body build up a tolerance to a specific allergen.

Two types of immunotherapy are allergy shots and sublingual drops:

Allergy shots involve injecting small doses of a particular allergen into the body over time. These small doses help the body get used to the allergen, allowing it to develop a tolerance to the allergen over time. Eventually, the body becomes immune to the allergic effects of the allergen, thus greatly diminishing or eliminating the symptoms altogether.

Sublingual drops also work to reduce allergy symptoms by helping the body build up a tolerance to specific allergens. However, with sublingual drops, there are no injections. The body is instead exposed to small doses of the allergen through drops of allergen extract being placed under the tongue for a few minutes at a time. Some patients need to use the drops daily to build up tolerance, while others only need to use the drops a few times a week.

Need Relief? Give Us a Call

If you are struggling with allergies, the doctors here at Century Ear, Nose & Throat, Head & Neck Surgery can help. To schedule an appointment for the treatment of allergies in Orland Park, call the office at (708) 460-0007. Appointments can also be scheduled at Century Ear, Nose & Throat, Head & Neck Surgery’s Evergreen Park or New Lenox locations by calling the same number.

By Century Ear, Nose, Throat, Head & Neck Surgery
August 30, 2019
Category: ENT Care
Tags: Allergies  

Woman sneezing from allergiesYou may have allergies that show up in the spring when plants are flowering and grass is growing. You’ve grown used to the itchy, allergies watery eyes and sneezing. But now, you have allergies in winter too, when you’re indoors because of bad weather. Your ENT specialists want you to know that allergies aren’t just seasonal. They can affect you all year long.

Hay fever, also called allergic rhinitis, is common during the spring and summer months and is caused by an allergic response to tree or grass pollen and various other flowering plants. But allergies aren’t confined to just spring and summer. When you are indoors during the fall and winter, you can experience allergies to pet dander, dust mites, mold and many other indoor irritants. You can also be allergic to certain foods and not even realize it.

Your first step in dealing with allergies is to learn what you are allergic to. Your ENT doctors can test you for food allergies and a variety of both indoor and outdoor allergens. Once you’ve found out what you are allergic to, your doctors may prescribe:

Allergy shots—typically given once a week with either a single injection or multiple injections depending on how many things you are allergic to.

Sublingual drop therapy—a convenient option for people on the go, or those who don’t want injections; your doctors mix up a custom treatment solution which you can take at home and use daily, as a drop under your tongue.

There are also some remedies you can try at home to get relief from allergy symptoms, such as:

  • Irrigating your nasal passages with a saline solution
  • Over-the-counter antihistamines and decongestants
  • Using allergy-proof pillowcases and linens
  • Using allergy or HEPA filters in your house, especially in the bedroom
  • Vacuuming your carpets regularly
  • Keeping your pets off of furniture and out of your bedroom

If you have irritating allergies, you already know they can affect your life. They can keep you from doing the things you like, and worst of all, they may not be just seasonal. But now there’s help just a phone call away from your ENT specialists. Call today and get some relief from your allergies!

By Century Ear, Nose, Throat, Head & Neck Surgery
July 31, 2019
Category: ENT Care
Tags: Deviated Septum  

Treating a Deviated Septum

Do you have a deviated septum? A deviated septum is a disorder in which the nasal septum -- the cartilage and bone that separate the right and left nostrils -- is off center or crooked. A deviated septum may be present at birth, may become crooked during fetal development, or may be caused by an injury. Having a deviated septum may cause problems such as nosebleeds or breathing difficulties. If you have a deviated septum, your ear, nose, and throat doctor (ENT) can help. Read on to find out how a deviated septum is treated.

1. Decongestants. If your deviated septum isn't severe, your symptoms may respond to treatment with medications. If you have a deviated septum, your doctor may prescribe decongestants. Decongestants are available as a nasal spray or pill. Decongestants are drugs that reduce nasal tissue inflammation, helping to keep the airways on both sides of the nose open. Medicine only treats the swollen mucus membranes and won't correct a deviated septum.

2. Antihistamines. Antihistamines may be prescribed to relieve symptoms of nasal obstruction by reducing swelling of the nasal membranes. Antihistamines are medicines that that help prevent allergy symptoms, including congestion and runny nose. They can also help nonallergic conditions such as those occurring with a cold. Follow the instructions on the package label or prescription carefully when taking an antihistamine.

3. Nasal Steroid Sprays. Nasal steroid sprays have anti-inflammatory effects and can reduce inflammation in the tissue that lines sinuses and nasal passages, making breathing easier. Your doctor may recommend using a steroid spray once daily. It usually takes from one to three weeks for nasal steroid sprays to reach their maximal effect. It is important to follow your healthcare provider's directions when using them.

4. Surgical Repair. If drug therapies don't work for you, your doctor may recommend surgery to correct your deviated septum (septoplasty). Your doctor may suggest septoplasty to repair your deviated septum. During the procedure, your nasal septum is straightened and repositioned in the center of your nose. The procedure typically takes 1 to 2 hours and uses local or general anesthetic.The level of improvement you can expect with surgery depends on the severity of your deviation.

5. Rhinoplasty. In some cases, rhinoplasty, commonly known as a nose job, is a plastic surgery procedure that is performed to treat a deviated septum. Rhinoplasty involves modifying the cartilage and bone of your nose to change its size or shape or both. Rhinoplasty can be performed using local anesthesia, intravenous sedation, or general anesthesia. Sometimes, the procedure performed at the same time as septoplasty.

Treat yourself to a better life. If you have a deviated septum, find a qualified ENT doctor in your local area and schedule a consultation. ENT doctors have received the proper training and education needed to treat a deviated septum. Treating your deviated septum can help you achieve a better quality of life!

By Century Ear, Nose, Throat, Head & Neck Surgery
June 28, 2019
Category: ENT Care
Tags: Asthma   Breathing Problem  

From outdoor allergies to asthma, there are many reasons why you or your child may be having trouble with your breathing. Breathing problems can be distressing and it’s important to understand when symptoms warrant seeing an otolaryngologist for a proper evaluation.

Common Causes of Breathing Problems

You may have trouble breathing if you are dealing with:

  • Common cold
  • Acute or chronic sinusitis
  • Asthma
  • Allergies
  • Deviated septum
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Emphysema
  • Bronchitis
  • Other upper respiratory infections (e.g. pneumonia)

While some conditions like the common cold will only cause mild and temporary symptoms, if you notice that your symptoms are serious, don’t respond to at-home care or are getting worse then it’s time to seek medical attention. After all, there are certain conditions such as sinusitis that can become chronic if not properly treated. An ENT doctor will know exactly what medications and treatments to offer to reduce sinus inflammation and to make breathing easier.

Chronic breathing problems, particularly those caused by allergies and asthma, may also be associated with:

  • Wheezing
  • Chest tightness or congestion
  • Nasal congestion
  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Coughing that gets worse at night
  • Shallow breathing

Asthma symptoms are usually detected early in childhood; however, it is still possible for adults to be diagnosed later in life (known as adult-onset asthma). If you or your child are experiencing difficulty breathing and tightness in the chest made worse by cold air, stress, or exercise it’s important that you see an ENT doctor right away. While asthma cannot be cured it can be properly managed with long-term medication. Leaving asthma untreated could be harmful to your health.

Testing and Diagnosis

When you come into the office an otolaryngologist will have you fill out detailed information about your family and personal medical history. Your doctor will also perform a physical exam. Pulmonary function tests are often used to test lung function in those suspected of having asthma. Of course, there are other breathing tests such as spirometry. Your doctor will also ask you questions about the symptoms you’ve been experiencing in order to rule out certain conditions or illnesses.

The treatment plan you receive will depend on the issue you are dealing with. For example, acute sinusitis can often be managed with over-the-counter nasal decongestants and antihistamines while chronic sinusitis may require more aggressive treatment such as prescription steroid sprays, oral corticosteroids, and endoscopic nasal surgery to remove the blockage or to repair the deviated septum. Your otolaryngologist can help you get your breathing problems under control.



Contact Us

Century Ear, Nose and Throat, Head and Neck Surgery

(708) 460-0007
16001 108th Ave Orland Park, IL 60467-5354
2850 West 95th Street
Suite 403, Evergreen Park, Illinois 60805
1890 Silver Cross Boulevard
Pavilion A
Suite 245, New Lenox, IL 60451