Top 5 Signs Your Child Needs to See a Specialist
Your child’s health is the most important marker of their growth. Most parents are used to frequent doctor’s visits to make sure they are healthy. Many parents become acquainted with pediatric ENTs during the cold season. However, there are a few signs that your child may need more in-depth care from an ENT that can be easy to miss.
Persistent snoring in children and adults can be very disruptive. This is especially so in children who rely on healthy sleep to promote memory and learning. Snoring can be caused by simply sleeping in an awkward position, but if it occurs every night it can lead to sleep apnea, preventing your child from getting enough oxygen. It can be caused by sinus inflammation or swelling of the tonsils or adenoids, which ENTs are equipped to treat.
Ear infections are quite common in children due to the shape of the eustachian tubes in children. Compared to an adult’s, a child’s eustachian tubes are narrower which makes them more prone to clogging. Colds and other infections can lead to a backup of fluid or mucus into the eustachian tubes. One common condition that can occur as a result of clogged eustachian tubes is called glue ear. Built up fluid becomes thick and adhesive, causing hearing loss, ringing in the ears, and pain. Glue ear can back up into the middle ear causing further infection as well. ENTs can help treat both these issues to make sure your child’s hearing is healthy.
Children are prone to nosebleeds due to their thinner blood vessels and tendency to be rough on their nose. A nosebleed every once in a while is bound to happen, but chronic conditions such as allergies and inflammation can lead to more persistent nosebleeds. Additionally malformations or growths in the sinuses can make it harder for nosebleeds to heal. An ENT can perform imaging to locate any such malformations and provide medications to treat chronic conditions.
Once your child starts daycare or school, their untrained immune system will be exposed to colds rather frequently. Most children experience a cold every two to three months. Colds are caused by viruses which can’t be treated by medications. Treatment usually involves managing symptoms with over the counter medications while waiting for the body to heal. The issue arises when symptoms of a cold last for more than 7 days or further symptoms like headaches or fevers emerge. This is a sign that the cold is developing into a sinus infection. In this case, an ENT will prescribe medications and manage symptoms to make sure the inflammation doesn’t become chronic.
ENTs can treat many disorders around the neck and head. Ear problems can cause balance and hearing impairments which can be treated by imaging and therapy. Tonsillitis or development issues in the esophagus can cause difficulties swallowing and speaking which ENTs can treat or refer to other specialists. ENTs can also perform imaging on facial features to make sure they are developing properly and identify any growths that may occur.
ENT specialists provide many services that can make sure your children are developing properly. Hearing, speaking, and breathing well are some of the most important capabilities we develop when we’re young. Keeping track of symptoms your children may develop and taking them to see a specialist when it becomes necessary will help keep them healthy.