for Western PA
View Our Frequently Asked Questions for Western PA
Find Otorhinolaryngology for Western PA, at Fayette Ear, Nose, Throat and Allergy P.C. If you are in the market for any of our services, please view our frequently asked questions:
- Do you treat nose and throat allergies?
- Can I get a throat doctor?
- Do you have a hearing aid for my bad ear?
- Where are your offices?
- Can I get an otorhinolaryngologic near Brownsville, PA?
- Do you treat chronic sinusitis?
- Can I book a checkup appointment?
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How common are nasal allergies?
Fairly common. About 20 to 25 percent of the U.S. population suffers from nasal allergies.
Why do people have allergies?
People with allergies have an immune response that is exaggerated. When they see trees, grass, weeds, cat, dog, dust, and mold coming by their nose, their immune response is hyperreactive. It produces a lot of biochemical mediators, which causes the suffering associated with nasal allergies.
Are allergies inherited?
Yes, if one parent has allergies, there is a 30 to 40 percent chance that every kid will inherit allergies. If both parents have it, there is a 50 percent chance that every kid will inherit their parents’ allergies.
What is a chronic sinus infection?
A chronic sinus infection means there is an inflammation of the lining of the nose and sinuses.
What do patients with chronic sinusitis complain of?
There are a whole bunch of symptoms, some of which include headaches, eye and face pressure, nose drainage, cough, sore throat, and hoarseness. Patients get hoarser the more they talk. These individuals also encounter clogged ears, pressure, and coolness. They feel like they are hearing in a tunnel, and their smell and taste could be bad.
Do people with chronic sinus infections have nasal allergies?
Some of them do. About 30 to 60 percent of people with a chronic sinus infection have nasal allergies.
What do patients with nasal allergies complain of?
Some of the common symptoms would be a running nose, sneezing, throat clearing, watery or itchy eyes, and congestion. These are the more common symptoms of allergies.
Can you grow out of allergies?
It is possible but unlikely. You tend to grow into allergies. The older you get, the more you are exposed. The more you are exposed, the worse the symptoms become.
Do people with chronic sinus and nasal allergies have asthma, like wheezing and breathlessness?
Sure – 10 to 30 percent of people with nasal allergies have asthma-like symptoms. They include chest tightness and wheezing, and get winded easily. Sixty to 80 percent of people with a chronic sinus problem have the same asthma-like symptoms. When your lungs go haywire, your nose goes haywire.
Do chronic sinus problems, and nasal allergies affect sleep?
They definitely can. The typical person with nasal allergies finds difficulty falling asleep on their back. Their nose gets more and more blocked overnight; they breathe through their mouth and are thirsty all night long. These individuals snore, grunt, and groan, feel bad, and drink all day. Their memory and concentration are substandard. They get angrier as the day goes by, and cannot wait to go home and sleep. The next day is the same old stuff. They wake up with a blocked nose, dry mouth, sore throat, and clear their throat with a lot of coughing.
How do you identify a patient’s chronic sinusitis and allergies?
Well, the first thing is to get a good history. Common symptoms include blocked nose, headaches, and pressures around the face and eyes, drainage, throat clearing, coughs, sore throat. Others include hoarseness, ears feeling clogged, hearing like they are in a tunnel, unsteadiness, and poor smell and taste. More symptoms include watery and itchy eyes, sneezing, and a running nose.
The second part of making a diagnosis will be the examination. Some allergy patients have a line on their nose called a supratip crease. This situation comes from rubbing their itchy nose since the time they were kids when the nose was still developing. That crease is actually a scar, which is there to stay. An area to look for during the examination is for black rings around the eyes called allergic shiners.
Third, we always do a thorough examination using a flexible endoscope. It is very comfortable, and only lasts about five to 10 seconds. It is more ticklish than anything. This exam allows us to examine their nose while looking at an image on a TV monitor. That examination shows us where and if blockages are present, and if the patient has nasal polyps.
How do you treat allergies?
Here are three ways to treat allergies:
- Avoidance, or environmental control measures.
- Allergy medications to block the allergic reaction.
- Allergy shots.
For patients who have mild allergies, just avoidance may be sufficient. If avoidance alone is not enough, we put them on allergy medications to block the allergic reactions. We add allergy shots for those who do not respond well to the first two allergy treatments.
What is the difference between allergy meds and allergy shots?
Allergy shots block allergic reactions. If you take it now, it works now. If you take it tomorrow, then you are going to miss it. Allergy shots change your immune system. As I mentioned earlier, people with allergies have an exaggerated immune response. Allergy shots actually down-regulate their immune response. So, when they get to a good place in their allergy shots, they do not have that exaggerated response anymore.
Who will benefit from allergy shots?
People who do not respond well to allergy medicines will benefit. People who cannot avoid the things they are allergic to because their occupation does not allow it also benefit. These groups include people who cut grass, construction workers, coal miners, and people who work in a vet’s office. Another group of people who would benefit would be people who do not like taking medicines. These people have had bad reactions to the allergy medication. In general, people with a poor prescription plan, and who cannot afford to be on a bunch of medicines benefit.
Do you have any advice for sufferers of chronic sinusitis and nasal allergies?
By the time most people get to our office, they have suffered a lot over years and years. This condition would not kill you, but it can certainly make you feel like you would rather be dead. So do not be disillusioned or frustrated with your treatment of your sinus problems and allergies. You do not have a medical mystery. You have a very simple problem that can be easily treated if you know how. So, do not be disappointed, come visit us, and we will take care of you.