If you have a health problem with your head or neck, your doctor might recommend that you see an otolaryngologist. That’s someone who treats issues in your ears, nose, or throat as well as related areas in your head and neck. They’re called ENT for short.
In the 19th century, doctors figured out that the ears, nose, and throat are closely connected by a system of tubes and passages. They made special tools to take a closer look at those areas and came up with ways to treat problems. A new medical specialty was born.
What Conditions Do Otolaryngologists Treat?
ENT’s can do surgery and treat many different medical conditions. You would see one if you have a problem involving:
Some areas of your head are treated by other kinds of doctors. For example, neurologists deal with problems with your brain or nervous system, and ophthalmologists care for your eyes and vision.
How Are ENT Doctors Trained?
Otolaryngologists go to 4 years of medical school. They then have at least 5 years of special training. Finally, they need to pass an exam to be certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology.
Some also get 1 or 2 years of training in a subspecialty:
Common problems include ear infections, tonsillitis, asthma, and allergies. Pediatric ENT’s also care for children with birth defects of the head and neck. They also can help figure out if your child has a speech or language problem.
How Do I Find an Otolaryngologist?
Ask your primary care doctor or go to Adoctor otolaryngologists to find one in your area. Look for one that specializes in your specific problem.