With many states experiencing unusually high Influenza-like illnesses, flu season is in full swing. As the season continues, influenza rates climb closer to the highest recorded rate of 7.7%, in 2009.
Rhinosinusitis is the medical term for a sinus infection, or the inflammation of the air cavities that line your nose and skull—AKA: your sinuses. As the cavities and passages become swollen, germs, and bacteria become trapped. This is how infection occurs. Sinus infections, most typically caused by a virus, may lead to other health issues. Here are a few ways to tell if you might be suffering from a sinus infection:
Have you ever heard of nasopharyngitis, rhinopharyngitis or acute coryza? Probably not, but odds are you’re familiar with the symptoms associated with them; a sore throat, runny nose, and sneezing? Or better known as—the common cold. As the weather changes and the temperature drops, colds seem to follow.
Are you experiencing nasal blockage and difficulty breathing? You could be suffering from nasal polyps! While most are familiar with polyps that occur in the colon, polyps can appear in the stomach, uterus, and nasal cavities. Although they are concerning, nasal polyps are almost always benign. Despite this, individuals with nasal polyps should seek treatment from an otolaryngologist immediately, as they affect one’s lifestyle and can bring about infection. Typical symptoms of nasal polyps include stuffy nose, postnasal drainage, nasal obstruction, and decrease or complete loss of smell. Continue reading
According to otolaryngologists, a person’s sense of smell is at its best between the ages of 30-60. After the age of 60, sense of smell generally decreases. As a result, many elderly people lose their sense of smell entirely. Women of all ages are more likely to have an acute sense of smell than their male counterparts. However, some people are born with a poor sense of smell and taste. Although premature smell and taste loss are common, they can be caused by a number of things.
It’s no secret the best way to avoid the flu is to get vaccinated, but there are other good health habits that can keep you feeling great this holiday season. Between the flu and other seasonal illnesses, taking these preventative steps is an important part of any healthy lifestyle. Continue reading
Here at Alexandria Otolaryngology Associates, we’re blessed to have hard-working, capable, and friendly people on our staff. We’ve recently begun honoring the great work they do by electing “Employees of the Week.” We’d like to share a little something about the people who make us great. Here are our first four—and certainly not our last! Continue reading
To understand how earaches begin, we must understand the Eustachian tube. This tube is a narrow channel which connects the inside of the ear to the back of the throat, just above the soft palate. In a healthy ear, this tube allows for drainage, preventing fluid in the middle ear from building up and bursting the thin ear drum. Ideally, fluid drains down the tube, assisted by tiny hair cells, and is swallowed.
At Alexandria Otolaryngology Associates, we know just how important it is to understand the things that effect your health. But as our time in medical school taught us, learning the details of big words like cholesteatoma, laryngopharyngeal reflux, and otolaryngology can be a full-time endeavor. To save you time, confusion, and tongue-twisters, we’ve curated a well-rounded ENT education library, which you can consult to learn more about a variety of ear, nose, and throat issues. Continue reading
Many people turn to chewing tobacco as a way to cut down the harm from smoking cigarettes. However, chew and all tobacco products have a severe association with cancer, particularly cancers of the head and neck. Nearly 48,250 Americans will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year. Of these patients, only 57% will be living five years after their diagnosis. Continue reading