Does your child have chronic ear problems? Is there hearing loss? Maybe there is also breathing difficulties, cleft palate, or hypernasal speech? These can all be helped by a doctor who specializes in ear nose and throat problems in children and adolescents. Pediatric ENT specialists are trained for exactly these situations. The ear, nose, and throat are all connected and ENT doctors know how to make them work. Here are the top 5 reasons your child may be having trouble hearing.
1. Ear infections. Sometimes it’s from water, sometimes it’s from a toy that gets stuck. It could be a cold. It could be from any number of things. Whatever the cause, the vast majority, 83%, of children will have an ear infection by the time they are 3 years old. Ear infections can be painful and can make your child cranky. A doctor specializing in ear nose and throat problems in children and adolescents can help diagnose and treat ear infections.
2. Genetics may be responsible. In children with hearing loss, genetics is responsible for 60% of hearing loss cases. The tough part about that 60% is that it cannot be controlled. It could happen even if both parents hear just fine. A ear, nose, and throat specialist can help you figure out the cause of your child’s hearing loss.
3. Its more common than you think. For every 1,000 newborns, one has significant hearing loss. Consider how many children are born each day, that .1% hearing loss is pretty significant.
4. Surgeries don’t always work. Ear nose and throat problems in children and adolescents may be treated with surgeries. While surgeries that repair the eardrum have an 85-90% success rate, that still means that 10-15% of the surgeries are not successful. An ear, nose and throat specialist will guide you through the risks and odds that your child’s surgery will be successful.
5. Aural atresia happens. Aural atresia is a congenital abnormality where the ear canal has failed to form. The good news is in 80% of cases it is only on one side, leaving the other ear in tact. If your child is born with aural atresia, consult your ear, nose, and throat specialist to see what can be done.
Ear nose and throat problems in children and adolescents can range from ear infections to aural atresia. Surgeries exist to correct many hearing problems. An ear, nose, and throat specialist can help you and your family through hearing problems. If your child has hearing problems, call an ear, nose, and throat specialist.