Patient Care FAQ

Patient Care

Itching in the ear canal is usually caused by irritation of the skin, either due to excessive moisture, or skin conditions such as eczema.  Itching often improves dramatically over several weeks by avoiding moisture in the ear canal when bathing and not cleaning the ears with Qtips or bobby pins.  Moisture in the ear canal during bathing can be easily prevented by placing part of a cotton ball coated with Vaseline into the bowl of the ear.    

When people fall asleep, the muscles in the throat relax.  When the tissues are relaxed, they can vibrate.  When it is loud enough to be heard by others, it is snoring.

Snoring treatment is aimed at reversing factors that induce or worsen snoring, like sleep position, nasal congestion, and use of sedatives.  When it persists, then procedures to stiffen the tissues in the throat can help reduce snoring.  First is it important to rule out obstructive sleep apnea.

Obstructive sleep apnea is a disorder where a person chokes temporarily but repeatedly during sleep.  Sometimes these choking episodes can by severe and appear life-threatening to an observer.  Often there is loud snoring between the choking episodes.

If you have had multiple episodes of tonsillitis that have been documented by your primary care provider in the past several years, tonsillectomy may be indicated. Guidelines include seven episodes of tonsillitis over the past year, five episodes over each of the past two years, or three episodes over each of the past three years. 

If you are a new patient please call (206) 598-4022 and ask to make an appointment for a hearing test. If you are an establish patient and have been seen in our clinic about your hearing before please call (206) 598-7528. 

Note: If you experience a sudden change in your hearing time can be of the essence, if any necessary medical treatment is to work. Please contact your physician right away and ask to have your hearing assessment as soon as possible.

Ear wax (cerumen) is normal in healthy ears.  It is formed in the outer part of the ear canal and makes its way to the opening where it clumps together.  In most cases, the wax will fall out on its own.  Excessive wax can be removed by wiping the opening of the ear canal with a damp washcloth.  

Q-Tips tend to pack the wax further into the ear canal and cause trauma to the delicate skin.  This can cause hearing loss by blocking the ear canal completely and increase the risk of ear infections.