What is an ENT, and When Do I Need to See One?

It can be difficult to picture, but your ears, nose, and throat are all connected through a series of tubes and canals. This is why, when you hold your nose shut and blow, you feel the pressure change in your ears. It’s also why ear infections often occur at the same time as a severe cold. Because these pieces are connected, they are able to function as one unit and each part supports the others. However, when there is an issue with one piece, it also affects the others.

Your ears, nose, and throat create a complex structure:

  • There are three parts to your ear: the outer, middle, and inner ear.
  • There are two parts to your nose: the anterior and the posterior.
  • There are three parts to your throat: the nasopharynx, the oropharynx, and the laryngopharynx.

Each part is connected and has its own function. Together, they create the upper respiratory system and this system is surrounded by a series of cavities in the skull called sinuses. Your sinuses are located in the cheekbones, your forehead, and between the eyes and nose. This entire system is what enables us to smell, taste, hear, and breathe!

Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) Doctor

An ENT, or otolaryngologist, is a specialized doctor that diagnoses and treats issues and conditions surrounding the complex ear, nose, and throat system.

  • Ear conditions may include infections, hearing loss, dizziness, tinnitus, balance disorders, facial or cranial nerve disorders, or nerve pain.
  • Nose conditions may include allergies, sinus issues, chronic sinusitis, deviated septum, snoring, or issues with the sense of smell.
  • Throat conditions may include problems with speech, digestion problems, swallowing, tonsillitis, or strep throat.

Should You See an ENT?

If you are experiencing pain or discomfort in any area surrounding the ears, nose, throat, or even the upper neck, you may want to schedule an appointment with an ENT. Detroit Sinus Center, with two locations in Detroit, has a team of sinus doctors who are highly educated and passionate about providing thorough, compassionate service. Don’t hesitate to talk with a sinus specialist if you are struggling with any of these problems.

Sinus Pain

If seasonal allergies seem to never let up, and if over-the-counter medications aren’t providing the necessary relief, it’s time to see a specialist. You may be experiencing issues with drainage or congestion, stuffiness, frequent headaches, or pain anywhere in the center of your face.

Sore Throat

If you have visited a family doctor and possibly been given a round of antibiotics, and your sore throat still isn’t going away, schedule an appointment with an ENT. Other symptoms may include difficulty swallowing, a loss of voice, or sinus-related symptoms such as congestion or sinus pain.

Hearing Loss

The cause of hearing loss may be related to aging, exposure to loud sounds, or due to an issue with the eardrum, ear canal, or the three bones connected to the eardrum. Hearing loss can also be caused by a buildup of fluid or wax that will need to be removed.


If you feel like you are spinning or swaying, even when standing still, you may be experiencing vertigo. This is often caused by a problem with the inner ear, an infection, or a buildup of material like fluid or wax.


If you’re having trouble breathing, feel congested, have a runny nose or postnasal drip, or if you experience frequent headaches, these allergy-type symptoms may be a larger sinus issue. An appointment with an ENT or sinus doctor will help find the root cause of your symptoms.

Don’t let ear, nose, or throat symptoms get in the way of living your life. Schedule an appointment at Detroit Sinus Center today. Our sinus doctors will help diagnose the problem and find the best course of treatment to fit your needs.

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