Millions of Americans know what it means when someone says that their “sinuses are acting up.” Chronic sinusitis is an uncomfortable condition that affects over 29 million adults according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It may cause phlegm buildup, headaches, stuffy nose, and swelling. What really causes sinusitis, and how can you effectively treat this chronic problem to minimize symptoms? Find that out when you visit Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center in Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA, to discuss balloon sinuplasty and other sinus treatments.
What Causes Sinus Problems?
Sinus problems may be caused by an infection in the nasal air cavities. Bad bacteria or fungus that thrives in dark environments mixes with excess mucus. Patients who have recently had cold symptoms may have a sinus flare-up. This can also happen due to allergies, which is why patients tend to struggle with symptoms in certain seasons. Anything that irritates the sinus passageways, whether it’s a chemical smell or dander in the air could cause sinusitis. A deviated septum, which affects the shape of the nose, may also be to blame.
What Are the Common Sinus Treatments?
Conservative treatments for chronic sinusitis include antibiotic therapy (anti-fungal medicine if it’s related to a fungus infection), and corticosteroid nasal sprays. One important goal of treatment is to clear the nasal passages so that you can breathe easier. Applying heat to the face and using a humidifier may help. A Stafford and Fredericksburg ENT can also administer a treatment called balloon sinuplasty for patients who have chronic, painful sinus symptoms.
How Does Balloon Sinuplasty Work?
The goal of balloon sinuplasty is to loosen blockages caused by sinusitis. It is an in-office procedure that is done under local sedation. An endoscopic wire is guided into the sinuses then inflated to open the blocked passageway. Infected mucus is gently removed to give you relief. There’s no need for surgery or sleep sedation and you can go back to everyday activities soon after the appointment.
See Your ENT for a Sinus Consultation
If you’re having chronic sinus symptoms, you may need balloon sinuplasty to get reliable, long-term relief. Call 540-371-1226 today for an appointment with a Stafford or Fredericksburg, VA, ENT at Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 29 million adults (slightly over 12%) have been diagnosed with sinusitis (sinus infection). A mild occasional sinus infection can often be treated with over the counter medication or self-care, but if you are suffering from severe nasal inflammation or chronic sinus infections, the physicians at the Ear, Nose and Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center in Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA, may recommend a balloon sinuplasty procedure.
Balloon Sinuplasty in Stafford and Fredericksburg
Sinusitis causes inflammation in the sinus cavity. Although sinusitis often has many of the same symptoms of a common cold, many cases are caused by a bacterial infection and require treatment with antibiotics. A sinus infection can also be caused by a fungal (viral) infection related to seasonal or environmental allergies.
According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, sinus infections affect approximately one in eight adults and are responsible for millions of doctor visits and dollars spent on prescription medication every year.
What is a Balloon Sinuplasty?
Inflammation causes the sinus cavity to narrow, which blocks the mucus in the sinus cavity from draining. A balloon sinuplasty is a minimally invasive, outpatient procedure that is used to gently open up the nasal passage so that the mucus buildup can be drained with a saline solution. Once your nasal passageway has been cleared, the balloon catheter is removed, leaving nasal passage open. A local anesthetic is applied before the procedure to minimize pressure and discomfort as your sinuses are dilated and cleared of buildup. Balloon sinuplasty is a non-surgical procedure, so the side effects and recovery time are typically much milder than a surgical procedure.
Find an Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Doctor in Stafford and Fredericksburg
To learn more about balloon sinuplasty and other treatment options for sinusitis, contact the Ear, Nose and Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center by calling (540) 371-1226 to schedule an appointment today.
Learn more about how our ENT team in Fredericksburg and Stafford can help you.
Our Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA, otolaryngologists have received extensive medical training to be able to prevent, diagnose and treat disorders, injuries and other problems involving the ears. Learn more about how our medical team can help you.
If you are dealing with any ear problems you should turn to one of our ENT doctors for specialized care and treatment.
So, what can an otolaryngologist do?
Well, we are able to provide diagnostic testing and treatment plans to handle a variety of ear issues, including:
- Hearing loss
- Ear infections
- Balance disorders (E.g. Vertigo)
- Disorders of the facial nerves
- Ear problems (e.g. swelling; pain)
- Tumors of the ear
While ENT doctors, such as ours, can also handle problems related to the nose and throat as well, we can provide you with the ultimate and expert ear care you need.
When should you visit an otolaryngologist?
We know that a lot of people like to take a wait-and-see approach to their health. Of course, it’s a good idea to pick up the phone and schedule an appointment with one of our ENT doctors if you are experiencing:
- Hearing loss (particularly if it's come on suddenly)
- Ear pain, swelling, fullness and fever (often a sign of an infection)
- Ringing or buzzing in the ears (a sign of tinnitus)
- Dizziness (could be the result of a vestibular disorder)
- Impacted earwax
Children, particularly youngsters, may not be able to tell you whether an ear infection is happening to them; however, you can look for signs that they might be dealing with an infection. For instance, if they are tugging at one ear a lot and fussing more than usual, this could very well be signs that they are dealing with an infection. If in doubt, give us a call and see if the symptoms you or your child is experiencing require urgent or specialized medical care.
Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Fredericksburg offers two convenient locations in Fredericksburg and Stafford, VA. If you are dealing with ear problems then turn to the expert for the answers you’ve been looking for.
What your ENT specialists in Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA want you to know.
If you are missing out on conversations because you can’t hear, it can be frustrating. Hearing loss can also lead to decreased self-esteem and self-confidence, but it doesn’t have to. You can restore your hearing with hearing aids. Today’s hearing aids come in many types and your ear, nose, and throat specialists at Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Fredericksburg in Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA want to introduce you to the different types of hearing aids.
Scheduling a hearing screening is an important first step to restore your hearing. A hearing screening determines your level of hearing loss and which hearing aid might be right for you. You should schedule a hearing screening as soon as possible if you experience:
- Problems distinguishing words from noise in the background
- Hearing muffled speech and sounds instead of distinct words and noises
- Problems hearing consonants in spoken words
- Needing those around you to speak more loudly and clearly
After a hearing screening, if you’ve been found to have hearing loss, your doctors at Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Fredericksburg will offer a selection of hearing aids, each with their own benefits. Consider:
- CIC hearing aids which are the most discreet because they fit completely in your ear canal; CIC hearing aids are smaller, so they don’t have a directional microphone or volume control.
- ITE hearing aids have a volume control and loop over your outer ear, making them more visible than CIC hearing aids.
- BTE hearing aids which are the largest hearing aid; they provide excellent sound quality and loop over the top of your ear and behind your ear.
You don’t have to miss out on conversations or sounds of the wonderful world around you. If you are losing your hearing, it’s time to bring back the joy by looking into hearing aids. It’s time to call your ear, nose, and throat specialists at Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Fredericksburg in Fredericksburg, VA to schedule a hearing screening. They have three convenient office locations in Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA to serve you so call today!
When the tonsils are repeatedly or chronically infected or are causing obstruction of the throat, your doctor may recommend that they be removed. The procedure for removing the tonsils is called a tonsillectomy. This surgery is most commonly performed in children. However, it is not uncommon for adults to require a tonsillectomy. This is a relatively straightforward procedure that can be performed by the ENT specialists at Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA.
What Is a Tonsillectomy?
The tonsils are two small glands at the back of the throat that house white blood cells and help the body fight infections, but they are vulnerable to becoming infected themselves. A tonsillectomy consists of removing these small glands surgically.
Having Your Tonsils Removed
You will need to go under general anesthesia for a tonsillectomy procedure. It is an outpatient procedure that can be completed relatively quickly. The entire recovery period could take a couple of weeks. Feelings of having a sore throat are common after this surgery and pain medication may be prescribed.
Call for a Tonsil Exam
If you or your child are experiencing symptoms that may indicate that you need a tonsillectomy or you have frequent bouts of tonsillitis, contact Ear, Nose & Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center of Stafford and Fredericksburg, VA. Call 540-371-1226 today to schedule an appointment.
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