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February is National Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT) Month for Kids

Children are not small adults and cannot always say what is bothering them or what hurts. Chances are, if you have children, they have seen their family physician for a sore throat or ear ache. If your child continues to have chronic issues, your doctor may refer them to a Pediatric Ear, Nose & Throat doctor (ENT), who specialize in examining young patients to diagnose and treat chronic ear, nose & throat problems. Ear infections and sore throats are among the most common reasons a child sees a doctor. In fact, ear infections are the #1 reason children see a doctor or are referred on to an ENT.

If a child has a recurring sore throat, the ENT will probably remove the child's tonsils and/or adenoids. This will prevent most sore throats and can also help a child who has snoring issues. Another procedure the ENT may perform is a Myringotomy (removal of fluid from the ear) with an insertion of an tympanostomy tube for drainage purposes. These procedures go together and consist of a small incision being made in the ear drum to drain the fluid. A tube is then placed in the ear to prevent the hole from closing and allowing the ears to drain. This procedure is easy and painless.

Pediatric ENT's also help with head and neck issues in young children. They can perform surgery of the neck and head, which would include before and aftercare, and they can help in the identification of sinus issues or communication disorders in a child.

If your child is having ear, nose or throat issues, see your family physician or make an appointment with one of the physicians at Sabetha Family Practice at (785) 284-2141. Sabetha Community Hospital also provides a monthly ENT clinic. For more information, call the Outpatient Department at (785) 284-1552.