Back to School and ENT

Mimi Ellis, PA-C

It's hard to believe, but just as my backyard tomato crop is getting good, it's time to get ready for school starting. That's in about 3 weeks for Gwinnett County. With a daughter in high school, I deal with many of the same challenges as the rest of the parents out there. And, having worked in ENT for 6 years now, I have some tips on how to prepare.

Change the sleep schedule. One week before school starts, begin transitioning to the sleep schedule kids will keep during the year. One of the joys of summer is going to bed later, and sleeping later, which can make the first week of school pretty miserable. Start by moving bed time up by one hour every day or two, so that a few days before school starts, the new sleep schedule is established. Be sure kids and parents get the right amount of sleep. Most of us get don't get enough, adults and kids alike. Sleep is needed for proper growth, immune function, and is important for cognitive and emotional wellbeing. Children ages 5-12 need 10 - 11 hours of sleep per night, and teens at least 9.25. All screens should be off at least one hour before bed time to ensure timely onset of sleep. And let's face it, parenting is the hardest, although most rewarding job we will ever have, and our kids need us to be sure we're well rested, too. Also remember that snoring is not normal in kids when they are well. Talk to an ENT if your child snores. In many cases, this can be a sign of sleep apnea, which results in lack of the deep sleep we all need.

Get flu vaccines. Influenza can sicken a child for up to 10 days. The resulting missed days of school can be difficult to make up, and can cause undue stress for you and your child. Flu vaccines do NOT cause the flu. When people come down with an illness right after getting vaccinated, it is because they already were exposed to the virus that made them sick. A low grade temperature the day of and possibly the day after the vaccine is not uncommon, and well worth the trade off. Kids are at risk of getting pneumonia with the flu, which can be life threatening. Sinus infections and ear infections are common with the flu, and can mean several weeks of poor hearing for your child, also impacting their social and academic progress.

Get hearing checked. Many pediatricians will do a yearly hearing screen with kids' annual physical. Although this is probably enough for most kids, the validity of these tests has been called in to question over the last decade or so. If you have any concerns about your child's speech and language development, academic performance, or even social functioning, see an Audiologist for a complete hearing assessment. Many developmental challenges are misdiagnosed when hearing loss is missed or not addressed.

Wash those hands. The single most effective way to prevent the spread of infection is to wash our hands. Let your kids see you washing your hands. Modeling the behavior we're looking for is the best way to get kids to form good habits. Remind them to wash with warm soap and water for at least twenty seconds or more (the time it takes to sing Happy Birthday), several times a day, especially before eating, and after using the restroom. This will improve your odds of keeping your child healthy during the school year, and for the years to come.

Swimmer's Ear: What Is It And What To Do About It

Swimmers-Ear.jpg

It’s summer time and with it comes issues with swimmer’s ear.

You might be thinking that swimmer’s ear is an unwelcome byproduct of swimming in the pool, lake or ocean. But did you know you can get it on land too?

Regardless of how you get swimmer’s ear, it is important to understand what it is, and what signs and symptoms would prompt you to see your local ENT doctor.

Swimmer’s ear is an infection of the outer part of the ear canal. It is different than the traditional “ear infection” which is an infection behind the ear drum. Swimmer’s ear only affects the external part of the ear canal.

Typical symptoms start with itching of the ear, followed by pain and swelling. Typically once the swelling of the canal occurs, hearing decreases because sound waves cannot make it to the ear drum. People with diabetes and other immunocompromised states are at an increased risk of developing a bone infection if not promptly treated.

Treatment of the condition is a combination of ear debridement (which involves suctioning the ear and removing the infection) and ear drops. At times, oral antibiotics are needed. Treatment usually lasts for 7-10 days with significant improvement seen over the first 72 hours after starting treatment.

Balloon Sinuplasty

nasal-blockage.jpg

If it seems like you constantly have sinusitis and nothing seems to resolve it, you need to read this.  

If the doctor diagnosed you with chronic sinusitis and medication doesn’t work, you need to read this. 

Our ear, nose and throat doctors have the solution for you…balloon sinuplasty.

We invite you to learn more…

What is balloon sinuplasty?

Balloon sinuplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that opens up the sinus passages. A small, flexible balloon catheter is guided through the nostril into the blocked sinuses. When inflated, the balloon will gently restructure and open the sinus passages. This process restores normal sinus drainage and function.

The procedure is similar in concept to a heart surgeon opening up blocked arteries during a balloon angioplasty procedure.

Who is a good candidate for balloon sinuplasty?

A good candidate for balloon sinuplasty is someone who has sinusitis that has not yet been resolved, or someone who has recurring sinusitis when using traditional medical treatment. The procedure will relieve the pressure and pain that most often accompanies chronic sinusitis.

Does the balloon sinuplasty procedure hurt?

No need to worry...The procedure can be performed safely in office with little to no pain. Our ENT doctors are expertly trained to perform the procedure and they have ample experience. 

What about the recovery time after the balloon sinuplasty procedure?

Recovery time is typically 1 to 2 days after the procedure appointment. For instance, if we perform the procedure on a Friday, you can go back to work on Monday.

Is the balloon sinuplasty procedure covered by insurance?

Yes, many insurance companies cover the procedure. In fact, prior to the procedure our team will do a benefits check to make sure it is covered under your particular health plan. We’ll also talk to you about your financial responsibility, if any, after insurance covers their part.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask us during your appointment or when scheduling.

And now the big question...

Does balloon sinuplasty work?

Yes it works! Over 500,000 patients have successfully undergone the balloon sinuplasty procedure to treat chronic sinusitis and acute recurrent sinusitis.

Why choose Northeast Atlanta ENT for your balloon sinuplasty procedure?

Our doctors are experienced. We have safely and successfully done hundreds of these procedures in our office.

Our doctors actually teach the balloon sinuplasty procedure to other doctors! You’re in excellent hands at our office.

We use a team approach for all balloon sinuplasty procedures to ensure the safest, most successful procedure appointment.

We have cutting-edge equipment to ensure the best possible results, such as navigation systems and a high definition endoscopic camera/scope (typically only found in hospital operating rooms).

The result?

You’ll experience:

  • a safer procedure

  • a shorter appointment

  • a pain-free appointment

Hard to say no to all of that, right?

What’s next? Call your doctor for an appointment.

Wondering if balloon sinuplasty is right for you? Do you want to speak with one of our doctors to learn even more about balloon sinuplasty?

Call us!

Northeast Atlanta ENT has 2 locations in the Atlanta area— Lawrenceville, GA and Johns Creek, GA. Call the office closest to you to schedule an appointment. Or you can schedule an appointment by clicking the following link:

At your appointment one of our doctors will complete an assessment to determine if you can benefit from balloon sinuplasty. If it is the best procedure to fix your health problems, you will schedule another appointment at your convenience.

So give us a call today...we look forward to meeting you.

In the meantime, check out some of our patient reviews: 




Qhote-Divider.png

“Dr. Chaudhry is a fantastic doctor and a  great person. He has taken care of me and my family with the utmost care and kindness.  He was my second opinion for sinus surgery and I am so glad. Because of his help I am able to breath better than I ever have and have been infection free for almost a year.  Thank you!”  

—Ronald Smith—

Qhote-Divider.png

“Very professional and friendly office staff and there was no wait for my appointment. The doctor (Dr. Zweig) was excellent and asked detailed questions and was focused on me and my concerns. She was a great listener, did not rush, answered my questions in ways I could understand and made me feel very comfortable.” 

—Kim Kapple—

Qhote-Divider.png

“Dr. Gorav is a very knowledgeable and friendly doctor. He helped diagnose and treat my problem quickly. He did a surgical procedure on me and it went smoothly with no complications. I had a quick recovery and he answered all of my questions. I recommend Doctor Gorav. He has also seen some of my family members.” 

—Andrea—

Qhote-Divider.png

“Dr. Roth was very thorough and informative. I did not feel rushed during my appointment and he was very helpful in offering various options for treating my breathing issues.” 

—Barbara L.—

Qhote-Divider.png

“Dr. Carmichael will always take the time to listen to his patients and family members. He has an exceptional beside manner. He is friendly and approachable while also being a brilliant MD. I would highly recommend him for any ear, nose, or throat need.” 

—Mary K.—

A Personal Welcome from Our Office

First and foremost, we want to thank you for visiting our website. Here we provide information on a variety of ENT services we offer, as well as discuss the array of options you face when choosing an ENT doctor in the Johns Creek and Lawrenceville areas.

Whether you are in need of a hearing aid, need to see a pediatric ENT for your child, or are tired of your chronic sinus symptoms we can help you.

Simply fill out the contact form on this page, or give us a call in order to schedule your appointment with Northeast Atlanta ENT today!

Sinusitis Treatment: What Options are Best for You?

We all know how allergies, or simply the common cold can really set us back. However at Northeast Atlanta ENT, we’ve heard many people say something along the lines of, “I’ve had this cold for a month; when is it going to go away?”

If you’ve had signs and symptoms of a cold or allergies for this long, then most likely something else is going on in your body; sinusitis. Luckily, at Northeast Atlanta ENT in Johns Creek and Lawrenceville, Ga., we are very experienced with treating sinusitis, and offer different treatment options depending on your unique situation, and what is best for you.

What is Sinusitis?

Sinusitis is a bacterial infection of the sinus cavities lasting 10 days or more. Sinusitis is typically preceded by the common cold or an allergy outbreak, but when symptoms persist for 10 days, 2 weeks, or sometimes much longer it means a bacterial infection is the likely culprit. While not a serious medical condition in the short-term, it can put a significant damper on your quality of life; interfering with work, school, sleeping patterns and more.

How is Sinusitis Diagnosed?

Normally, our experienced physicians at Northeast Atlanta ENT can diagnose sinusitis with a routine exam at one of our offices (Lawrenceville & Johns Creek). However, in the event that your case is particularly difficult to diagnose, a CT scan could be ordered to confirm the diagnosis.

In addition, other tests (such as a blood test to rule out any immune disorders) may be ordered by one of our ENT physicians. Our goal is to treat your sinusitis effectively and help you feel better, and in order to do that sometimes, on occasion, these other tests must be conducted to rule out any other possibilities.

Treating Sinusitis with Antibiotics

Sinusitis (whether one-time or chronic) is typically treated with aggressive antibiotic therapy. However, some patients become resistant to antibiotics, making sinusitis difficult to treat in certain situations. It is recommend that you give your body a chance to try and fight off the infection naturally, boosting your immune system in the process.

If you feel it has been 7 days or more, and you are not getting better without antibiotic treatment, then it is definitely time to contact one of our offices and schedule your appointment.

Minimally Invasive Surgery: Balloon Sinuplasty

One of the more popular treatments at our Lawrenceville & Johns Creek locations for patients experiencing recurring or chronic sinusitis involves a minimally-invasive, outpatient procedure called a Balloon Sinuplasty.

Basically, a Balloon Sinuplasty involves a small, flexible balloon catheter that is carefully guided through the nostrils and into the sinus cavity by our highly-trained ENT physicians. When the balloon is inflated, it gently reopens the cavities, restoring normal functioning.

Many patients prefer this procedure to other, more complex sinus surgeries because it is an outpatient procedure, can be done in our office (no hospital room needed), and typically involves a swift recovery.

So What’s Next?

If you’ve been dealing with chronic sinus problems, and traditional, over-the-counter medicine has not seemed to alleviate your symptoms, then treatment with antibiotics or Balloon Sinuplasty may be the best option for you.

To learn more, or to book your appointment, contact our Lawrenceville office here, or our Johns Creek office here to schedule your appointment today, and take the most important step on the road to recovery!

Sleep Apnea Surgery in Lawrenceville & Johns Creek, GA.

Does your spouse or partner hit you with a pillow during the night for snoring too loud? Do you ever find yourself waking up in the middle of the night, breathing heavily for seemingly no reason? When you get up in the morning are you refreshed, or do you feel as if you are never getting enough sleep?

If you answered “yes” to the above questions, then it may be time to visit Northeast Atlanta Ear Nose & Throat in Johns Creek or Lawrenceville, GA. in order to be evaluated for a potentially serious health condition: obstructive sleep apnea.

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is characterized clinically as a condition where a person experiences recurring episodes of breathing pauses that last a minimum of 10 seconds, which is due to a narrowing of the upper airways, or in some cases a collapse of the airway.

Why is it so dangerous?

There are a variety of reasons why sleep apnea is a dangerous condition. Here are a few of them:

  • It causes the heart to work harder, putting undue stress on a vital organ.

  • Due to restless sleep, a person can become hazardous when operating a vehicle or heavy machinery.

  • Untreated sleep apnea increases the risk of heart attack, stroke, and even diabetes.

  • Chronic headaches. Sleep apnea sufferers often experience recurring, chronic headaches and neck pain.

  • Obstructive sleep apnea can increase the occurrence and frequency of asthmatic episodes, and even interfere with certain asthma treatments and medications.

  • Pulmonary hypertension, which is high blood pressure in the arteries within the lungs.

  • Psychological problems. Studies have shown that individuals suffering from sleep apnea are also at an increased risk to experience depression, which seems to worsen as sleep apnea becomes more severe.

Are there any non-surgical treatments for sleep apnea?

There are a variety of non-surgical treatments available for patients suffering from obstructive sleep apnea. First and foremost, weight loss can help alleviate sleep apnea symptoms, as sleep apnea is often seen in obese or overweight individuals.

Secondly (and most commonly), a CPAP machine can be used in order to alleviate symptoms, and provide treatment for patients. a CPAP machine uses positive airway pressure, which blows compressed air into the lungs and keeps the airway from closing. We oftentimes recommend a CPAP machine to our Lawrenceville and Johns Creek patients who are looking for non-surgical treatment options.

Another non-surgical treatment involves using a dental appliance that moves the lower jaw and tongue forward in order to keep the airway open and unblocked. However, this treatment is generally only worthwhile to patients experiencing mild sleep apnea. If you suffer moderate to severe sleep apnea, surgery may be your best option.

Is surgery the best alternative for patients with severe obstructive sleep apnea?

Each case is different, which is why it is important to schedule your appointment at one of our two office locations (Johns Creek & Lawrenceville, GA.).

Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP). This is a surgery often used to treat patients suffering with sleep apnea. This surgery works by eliminating excess soft palate tissue, thus opening the airway for easier breathing. In addition, the air passage may be further enlarged using a procedure known as a tonsillectomy (more commonly referred to as “getting your tonsils taken out”).

Genioglossus and hyoid advancement. This is another surgical alternative for the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea. This process works by preventing the collapse of the lower throat and pulls the tongue muscles forward, the result is an unobstructed airway, and easier breathing.

We also offer other surgical alternatives, which we can share with you during your appointment if you are a candidate for those particular procedures.

What’s my next step?

If you are tired of the restless nights of sleep, the loud snoring that doesn’t allow you or your significant other to get a peaceful night’s sleep, and want to take the logical next step and get relief permanently from this dangerous health condition, then please contact our Lawrenceville ENT office, or our Johns Creek ENT clinic today and schedule your appointment. By contacting us you can get on the road to better health, better rest, and a happier life!

Tinnitus Treatment for Lawrenceville and Johns Creek, GA. Residents

Maybe it’s a rushing river, a bee buzzing, or a high-pitched ringing that you just can’t seem to shake. Regardless of how you would describe the ringing or buzzing in your ears, it is frustrating, annoying, and shouldn’t be there.

If you have experienced any of the above sensations over an extended period of time, then you may be suffering from a condition known as chronic tinnitus, which is present in roughly 5-10% of the adult population in the United States according to the Healthy Hearing Foundation page on tinnitus.

At Northeast Atlanta Ear Nose & Throat, PC (locations in Lawrenceville and Johns Creek, GA.) we offer tinnitus treatment for patients who suffer from chronic ringing in the ears.

Why Does Tinnitus Occur?

Anyone can be diagnosed with chronic tinnitus, with the most common suffers being older men (as there is a strong correlation between chronic tinnitus and some level of hearing loss). However, individuals male or female, young or old can experience sporadic episodes of tinnitus that over a period of time can turn into an ongoing problem.

In addition to the age and gender factors, the next most common cause of tinnitus is the level of noise a person is exposed to over a long period of time. Some common reasons people suffer from tinnitus are due to work conditions (construction jobs, factory workers, etc.) and lifestyle choices (attending loud concerts and events, or shooting guns) which can lead to damaged hearing, and an increased risk for tinnitus symptoms to manifest themselves.

How Can Tinnitus Interrupt my Daily Life?

If you are a tinnitus sufferer, then you have probably experienced some of the following:

  • Being annoyed at the ringing in your ears, and unable to settle down or relax as a result.

  • Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep.

  • Having a difficult time concentrating or focusing on specific tasks because of the distractions caused by tinnitus.

  • Experiencing anxiety or depression, wondering if your condition will ever get better.

These are classic signs of a tinnitus sufferer, and if you are experiencing any of these issues then we encourage you to contact one of our offices (contact our Lawrenceville office here, or our Johns Creek office here).

What Treatment Options are Available?

Non-invasive tests may be performed in order to determine the underlying cause of your tinnitus, which is not always apparent with a standard physical examination.

Our ENT physicians may recommend balance testing, a hearing loss test, or an imaging procedure (such as a CT scan or x-ray) in order to get a more thorough understanding of what is going on in your body.

What Should I Do?

If your tinnitus is severe to the point that it is interrupting your daily life and having a significant impact on your quality of life, then we encourage you to contact us today in order to schedule your appointment.

Our doctors work with patients suffering from tinnitus each and every day, and may be able to help you find relief. Give us a call today at one of our convenient locations to schedule your tinnitus appointment!

How to Prevent Fall Allergies: Stop Them Before They Start

It’s that time of year again. The mornings are noticeably cooler, and fall is just around the corner. Before long the leaves will turn into a beautiful color palate of orange, red and yellow.

While this is a beautiful time of year, millions of allergy sufferers around the United States dread what is to come: fall allergy season. At Northeast Atlanta Ear Nose & Throat, we want to help you stop your allergies before they start, and in this article, we are going to show you exactly how to do that.

Here are 4 things you can do to prevent fall allergies, or mitigate the effects your allergies have on your overall health and well-being.

Keep your filters clean

Keeping your air conditioning, furnace, and ducts clean is essential to reducing allergies. Over time, allergens can build up on filters, wreaking havoc on your sinuses. In addition, using a home air filtration system may help reduce the amount of allergens you are exposed to within your home.

Don’t let leaves sit in your yard too long

Wet leaves are a breeding ground for mold, and many fall allergy sufferers are allergic to mold spores. Therefore, have someone who is not allergic to mold to clean the leaves out of your yard, or if you must do it yourself, wear a mask to prevent inhaling excess allergens.

Keep pets out of the bedroom, even if you are not allergic to them

While your dog or cat may be like a child to you, if they are causing you problems and disrupting your quality of life, consider making the bedroom a no pets zone. Almost all pets spend some time outdoors, even if it is only for a few minutes a day. Pets can easily pickup pollen in their fur, and cause an allergic outbreak even if you are not allergic to your pet.

Find out the root cause of your allergies

The best way to avoid fall allergies this season is to undergo allergy testing. At Northeast Atlanta Ear Nose & Throat, we provide allergy testing services for patients of all ages.

We frequently test patients for mold and ragweed allergies, as well as a wide variety of other grass, tree, and weed allergens. You don’t have to dread the coming autumn months…get tested.

What should you do now?

When you visit one of our office locations in Lawrenceville or Johns Creek our team will test you for a wide variety of allergens that could be causing you problems in the fall or year round.

After your test results come back, our ENT doctors will sit down with you to discuss treatment options and give you their medical expertise on how to minimize or nullify the effect these allergies have on you.

So don’t wait–give one of our offices a call and schedule your allergy testing appointment. It’s time to have an allergy-free fall. Contact us today!