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From the category archives: Raleigh Capitol Ear, Nose & Throat

two of the most common causes of throat pain are strep throat and tonsillitis. These two diseases have similar symptoms but are treated differently. Here is a side-by-side comparison of the differences as well as guidelines for care.

Can Children Have Sleep Apnea?

Yes, 2 to 4 percent of children have a form of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), and ten percent snore regularly, leaving them susceptible to the same health risks and problems that occur in adults with OSA, according to the American Academy of Otolaryngology. Sleep apnea is a disease where there is a cessation of airflow for 10 seconds or more. This may occur hundreds of times during the night. While not everyone who snores has sleep apnea, snoring is one of the major indicators.

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Should Your Child Have Tonsils Removed? A Guide for Parents

If your child has chronic throat infections, it may seem like the tonsils do nothing but cause trouble. In actuality, they do have a role to play as a part of the body’s natural defense against germs. However, when your child has recurrent tonsillitis, removing the tonsils can make a dramatic improvement in his or her life.

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How to Explain a Tonsillectomy to Your Child

It’s often difficult for children to understand what tonsils are and why they may have to be removed. If your child is facing a tonsillectomy, you want to be sure he or she understands what is happening. Learning about the process will take a lot of the mystery—and fright---out of the procedure. Following are some guidelines for explaining a tonsillectomy to your child. 

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Is it Strep Throat or Tonsillitis?

It’s difficult to determine the cause of a sore throat: It could be the result of anything from allergies to heartburn. However, two of the most common causes of throat pain are strep throat and tonsillitis. These two diseases have similar symptoms but are treated differently. See our side-by-side comparison of the differences as well as guidelines for care.

 

 

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Should Your Child Have a Tonsillectomy?

When children have difficulty with chronic stuffy noses, continual snoring, and frequent bouts of strep throat, it may be time to “round up the usual suspects.” In this case, the “usual suspects” are frequently the tonsils. While tonsil removal (or tonsillectomy) was once considered a rite of passage, the American Academy of Otolaryngology (AAO) has developed specific guidelines to help ear, nose and throat doctors determine who are the most suitable candidates for a tonsillectomy. Read on to find out if this procedure may be appropriate for your child.

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Tonsil Stones

This month’s blog deals with the common and often embarrassing problem of tonsil stones. Tonsils stones (or tonsilliths) are small clumps of whitish, odorous debris that collect in the surface crevices (crypts) of the tonsils. Many people think they are food particles, but they are primarily made up of shedded epithelium. The epithelium or surface lining of the tonsil will shed, much like skin sheds, and collect in the crypts of the tonsils. This epithelial debris may then mix with bacteria, resulting in a low grade sore throat and/or chronic bad breath. When the tonsilliths fill the crypt they may be coughed out or sometimes removed with pressure from a Qtip or the patient’s finger. After removal, they will generally recollect within weeks to months. They can be extremely annoying but are not dangerous, so if they are noticed infrequently and are only mildly symptomatic, they do not require treatment. However, for some patients, tonsilliths can be a weekly or even daily annoyance, and these patie ...

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