Should you visit an audiologist or ENT doctor when you’re experiencing hearing loss or pain in your ears? Here’s why a visit to your an ENT (ear, nose, and throat) doctor should be your first step.
What is an ENT Doctor?
ENT doctors have specialized training in the treatment of conditions affecting the ears, nose, and throat. Because the ears are such complex organs, the issues that can impact hearing are also complex and can vary widely. Here’s what the doctor will check for when you visit an ENT office for a hearing condition.
- An outer ear infection — Commonly known as “swimmer’s ear,” Otitis externa is an infection in the ear canal. Moisture or some form of trauma is usually the cause. The symptoms can range from pain and discharge to muffled hearing. An ENT doctor will clean the ear canal and apply a topical antibiotic. On occasion, prescription oral antibiotics may also be necessary.
- Impacted ear wax —Are you experiencing pressure, trouble hearing, pain, or having difficulties with your hearing aid? The problem may be due to impacted ear wax. An ENT doctor can diagnose and treat the condition to provide relief.
- Middle ear infection —Children often suffer from middle ear infections, but adults can end up with the condition as well. ENT doctors have a variety of both solutions for this condition, including medication and, in chronic cases, surgery.
- Chronic ear disease —A wide variety of disorders can cause hearing loss and pain. An ENT doctor has the training to diagnose these conditions.
- Loss of hearing —There are three distinct types of hearing loss. All three can be diagnosed by your ENT doctor, who will refer you to an audiologist if your conditions require further treatment.
Call Southwest Idaho ENT at (208) 367-3320 for more information or to schedule an appointment.