Posts for category: ENT Issues
A condition called sinusitis affects up to 11 percent of Americans according to the CDC, causing chronic headaches and other symptoms. Sinus pain is particularly distressing because the pressure is felt behind and between the eyes and can radiate to other places in the head. It makes it harder to think, concentrate, focus, and perform throughout your day. The doctors at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Simi Valley, Camarillo, Ventura County and Thousand Oaks, CA can help you get the relief you need with sinus surgery and other treatments.
Causes of Sinus Pain
The sinuses are hollow spaces in the face that are filled with air and normally lined with mucus. The lining of the sinuses can become irritated and inflamed by a virus or bad bacteria, causing a sinus infection. Allergens may also be the culprit behind sinus pain. This condition causes a number of additional symptoms including tension headaches that last for days, constant runny nose, and yellow or green nasal discharge. It can be acute (short-term and usually related to a cold) or chronic (reoccurring for weeks).
How an ENT Can Help You Deal with Sinus Pain
Sinus pain sometimes passes on its own after a relatively short time, and can be managed with pain medication, nasal decongestants, antihistamines (if related to an allergy), or antibiotic therapy (if the cause is a bacterial infection). But when the condition is chronic and causing major discomfort, the doctors at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Simi Valley, Camarillo, Ventura County and Thousand Oaks, CA may recommend endoscopic sinus surgery.
Reducing the Occurrence of Sinus Pain
You can take steps to reduce the occurrence and intensity of sinus pain. Here are a few tips to consider going forward:
- If your sinus pain is caused by allergies, get an allergy test to identify the trigger so that you can avoid that substance. Take antihistamines as prescribed by your doctor.
- Use a nasal rinse to irrigate mucus out of the sinus cavities and remove irritants.
- Try using a humidifier in your home, as dry air can aggravate a sinus infection.
Dealing with Sinusitis
Sinus pain can take you away from your daily routine and cause major lifestyle inconveniences. The treatments offered at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Simi Valley, Camarillo, Ventura County and Thousand Oaks, CA, including sinus surgery, can give you much-needed relief. Call the office today for an appointment.
Thyroid problems affect as many as 27 million Americans, and nearly half of them don’t know it according to statistics published by the Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. Thyroid disease may be the cause of many unexplained chronic symptoms that patients experience. Medications and dietary changes may help with thyroid problems, but a doctor at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Simi Valley, Camarillo, Ventura County and Thousand Oaks, CA may recommend that you have thyroid surgery.
What Is the Thyroid?
The thyroid is a gland located in your neck that controls your metabolism. When it isn’t functioning properly, it causes a number of disruptive symptoms throughout the body. Hyperthyroidism is when the thyroid is overactive, while hypothyroidism is when the gland isn’t working hard enough to meet the body’s needs. Thyroid cancer is also a concern in both children and adults. Thyroid problems should be diagnosed as soon as possible, because when the condition is properly treated it may give you relief from many of the symptoms you’ve been experiencing.
Signs of a Thyroid Problem
Your Simi Valley, Camarillo, Ventura County and Thousand Oaks, CA ENT will diagnose a thyroid issue with an exam and a blood test. These are some of the signs of a thyroid problem that may require thyroid surgery or another treatment:
- Sluggishness and fatigue.
- Excessive weight gain or loss.
- Anxiety, moodiness, and irritability.
- Depression and racing thoughts.
- Bowel problems (constipation or diarrhea).
- Loss of focus and memory problems.
- Swelling or a lump around the neck.
- Menstrual irregularity in women.
- Muscle weakness.
These treatments can get your system back on track and eliminate the symptoms that you’ve been experiencing.
- Anti-inflammatory medications.
- Thyroid hormone therapy.
- Thyroid surgery is a procedure that will remove a growth from the thyroid gland (or the entire gland) if the diagnosis is thyroid cancer.
- A nutritional consultation, as diet can have a significant effect on thyroid function.
Managing Your Thyroid Issues
You may learn that you have been struggling with chronic symptoms related to a thyroid issue. Contact West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Simi Valley, Camarillo, Ventura County and Thousand Oaks, CA today to discuss the benefits of thyroid surgery and other treatment options with your ENT. Call the office today for your consultation and exam.
Would you be surprised that hearing loss affects interpersonal relationships? Who hasn't watched a colleague, loved one or friend ask for sentences to be repeated or complain that too many people are talking at once? Unfortunately, hearing loss also can lead to cognitive problems and even depression. So your otolaryngologists and audiologists at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Simi Valley, Ventura County, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks, CA, ask you to know and recognize the early signs of hearing loss so that you or a family member can receive the best in hearing care.
Signs of hearing loss
The American Speech, Language, and Hearing Association states that hearing loss has hereditary and age-related components. However, environmental factors, such as exposure to loud noise and music, some prescription drugs, trauma, ear wax (cerumen) accumulation and autoimmune disorders can temporarily or permanently reduce hearing in one or both ears.
If you think you have a hearing problem, here's what to look for:
- Tinnitus, a ringing or buzzing noise
- Perceiving speech to be muffled, especially when listening to children or women, who typically have high-pitched voices
- Asking people to repeat themselves
- Avoiding parties, meetings and family gatherings
- Having difficulty hearing conversations in crowded rooms
- Turning up the volume on your phone, radio, TV or other audio devices
- Feeling exceptionally tired after attending a social event
If you are experiencing one or more these symptoms of hearing loss, contact your ear, nose and throat physician in Simi Valley, Ventura County, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks for a consultation.
Our doctors of audiology can perform tests which evaluate how well you hear various kinds of sounds, including those conducted through bone and through the air. Additionally, they assess how well a person distinguishes various kinds of sounds, how well the middle ear functions and even if the ear canals are blocked with wax.
Tips to minimize hearing loss
At West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat, the professional team recommends some simple strategies to avoid hearing loss. They include:
- Use an over-the-counter ear wax kit to flush out cerumen accumulation on a regular basis, but do not insert cotton-tipped swabs or other pointed objects into the ear canal.
- Stop smoking. Tobacco users have a higher incidence of hearing problems.
- Avoid noise, especially on the job. If you have a loud occupation, such as heavy machinery operator, your employer should provide you with adequate ear protection.
- Check your meds with your prescriber or physician to see if they have side effects related to the ears.
- Get routine hearing screening every year beginning at age 50, or sooner if you notice symptoms.
Find out more
Preserve one of your greatest assets: your hearing. To arrange a hearing consultation with one of our physicians, call West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Simi Valley, Ventura County, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks, CA, at (805) 379-9646.
Do you know the warning signs of head and neck cancer?
While no one likes thinking about cancer, it’s certainly an important topic that is worth educating people about. After all, around 63,030 people developed head and neck cancer in 2016 alone. Unfortunately, the survival rate is exceedingly low because a lot of people don’t know what symptoms to look for or which symptoms are worth being checked by a medical professional. Our Simi Valley, Ventura County, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks, CA, otolaryngologists are here to provide some facts about head and neck cancer and the telltale signs that something is wrong.
Did you know that when it comes to head and neck cancers, the areas most affected by this disease are the nose, throat and ears? So it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that if you notice any of these symptoms that it’s time to call our Simi Valley, Ventura County, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks ENT doctors to find out if you should come into the office for a checkup:
- Chronic sore throat
- Hoarseness or changes in your voice
- Persistent cough
- The sensation of a lump in your throat
- Pain or difficulty swallowing
- Ear pain
- Difficulty hearing
- Persistent bad breath despite good oral health
- Oral patches that may be red or white
- Difficulty breathing
- Chronic nasal congestion
- Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
While one of these symptoms alone won’t often be a cause for concern, if you are experiencing several of these symptoms then something isn’t right and should be addressed by our ENT specialists. The sooner you seek attention for your health problems the better the prognosis will be if we find that you do in fact have head and neck cancer.
In order to determine whether or not you have head and neck cancer, it’s important that we perform a thorough evaluation in order to diagnose the cause of your symptoms. Along with a physical exam, we will go through your detailed medical history and also talk to about the symptoms you are experiencing. If we suspect that you may have cancer then we will recommend that you visit a specialist for a more comprehensive battery of diagnostic testing.
Whether you are experiencing symptoms or you just have concerns about your ear, nose and throat health, it’s important that you give West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat a call. Our ENT services extend to the Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Ventura County and Camarillo, CA, areas.
Don’t let your allergies win. Fight back with more effective methods.
Whether you are someone who deals with seasonal allergies or you are allergic to your friend’s cat, there are many elements in the environment that can lead our body to reaction in strange ways. If one of our Simi Valley, Ventura County, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks, CA, ENT doctors has diagnosed you with allergies find out the best ways to tackle them for the long term.
While some allergies can be controlled with simple over-the-counter medications and by avoiding the allergen as much as possible, our Simi Valley, Ventura County, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks otolaryngologists know that it isn’t always that simple. Those dealing with moderate-to-severe allergies need better treatment options.
Of course, it’s important to know what triggers your symptoms. While it is easy for some people to tell it isn’t always that obvious for others. By coming into our office we can perform an allergy skin test to pinpoint your allergies.
One way to reduce the frequency or severity of your allergy symptoms is to find the right medication based on the symptoms you experience. Prescription-strength antihistamines, decongestants or even steroids (in more severe cases) are the most common allergy medications offered.
Sometimes allergy shots are recommended if you deal with serious symptoms that hinder your day-to-day life. For example, if you are allergic to pet dander, but your family can’t imagine living without their furry sidekick, then allergic shots may be the best method for reducing your pet dander symptoms over time.
Besides medications, which are designed to control your symptoms but won’t actually cure your allergies, there are also lifestyle modifications you can make to reduce contact with the allergen:
- Make sure that your bedroom is a pet-free zone.
- Wash all surfaces of the home, and vacuum and clean all carpets, furniture and bedding regularly.
- Depending on the cause of your allergies, it’s a good idea to wear a mask over your nose and mouth while gardening, mowing the lawn or even dusting and cleaning your home.
- If you have outdoor or seasonal allergies keep windows closed on days when pollen or mold counts are high. Avoid spending a lot of time outdoors if it’s windy.
Have questions about treating your allergies? Not finding these options as effective as you had hoped? West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat is here to the rescue. With four convenient locations in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Ventura County and Camarillo, CA, we make it easier to get the allergy treatment you need.