My Blog

By Dr. Andrew Parker
March 05, 2020
Category: Sleep Issues
Tags: Sleep Apnea   Snoring  

Do you snore often? More than just an annoying sleep pattern, snoring can indicate sleep apnea, a potentially deadly condition. Fortunately, here at Parker Ear, Nose, and Throat of Fairfield County in Norwich, CT, your otolaryngologist, Dr. Andrew Parker, can determine if you have sleep apnea and diagnose a proper treatment.

Snoring versus Sleep Apnea

According to the American Sleep Apnea Organization, snoring occurs when throat tissues relax and block the airway. This snoring causes a vibration, which creates a distinct sound. Anatomy, weight, alcohol consumption, and other factors impact the loudness of snoring.

Snoring is also a sign of sleep apnea. The primary difference is a person with sleep apnea will stop breathing for as long as a minute. During sleep, the person snoring may make snorting or gasping sounds.

Obesity, the size of the tongue or tonsils, age, and anatomy of the head and neck can all impact snoring and sleep apnea.

Health Risks of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea may be the result of a more severe condition such as congestive heart failure or nasal obstruction. Sleep apnea health risks can include:

  • Poor sleep quality, making you tired throughout the day
  • Weight gain
  • Heart conditions, including high blood pressure and atrial fibrillation
  • Stroke
  • Type II Diabetes

Your partner may also suffer from a lack of sleep due to your snoring.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Sleep Apnea

If you suspect you have sleep apnea, consult your physician, or contact an otolaryngologist such as Dr. Parker in Norwalk, CT.

A sleep study in a hospital or certified sleep center is necessary to confirm sleep apnea. Some of the items measured while you sleep include brain activity, heart rate, eye movements, respiration, and leg movement. The most critical measure is the amount and number of times your breathing stops during your sleep time.

If diagnosed with sleep apnea, some of the most common preventative measures include the following.

  • Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) Devices: These devices provide masks that supply air pressure that ensures your airway remains open.
  • Oral Devices: These pieces are worn in the mouth while you sleep to hold the lower jaw in position and prevent the upper airway from blocking the airway.
  • Weight Loss: Reducing your weight can alleviate some of the worst effects of sleep apnea
     

Call Us

For more information on your options, call (203) 866-8121 for an appointment with Dr. Parker of Paker Ear, Nose, and Throat of Fairfield County in Norwalk, CT.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
December 23, 2019
Category: Otolaryngology
Tags: hearing loss  

Here are some things to consider if you or someone you love is dealing with hearing loss.

Although hearing loss is a common problem, many people are still embarrassed to acknowledge that they are having trouble hearing. According to the Hearing Loss Association of America, this is part of the reason why it takes the average person about seven years from the time of their hearing loss to actually seek treatment. Fortunately, our otolaryngologist in Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, Dr. Andrew Parker, and his team of audiologists are here to ensure that you receive the treatment you need as soon as possible.

How to know that you have hearing loss

While it might initially sound a bit strange, not everyone knows that their everyday issues point towards the presence of hearing loss. This is because hearing loss is usually a subtle issue, gradually growing over time. Here are some signs that your hearing should be checked out,

  • You find yourself saying “what?” a lot more than usual
  • You avoid social interactions and have trouble following group conversations
  • Noisy environments like a crowded restaurant make it difficult to hear people
  • You find yourself having to regularly raise the volume of your TV, radio, or phone
  • You don’t hear everyday noises like the doorbell or the oven timer
  • You find yourself reading lips instead of actually listening to what people are saying

What you can do about your hearing loss

If you find yourself making excuses for not meeting friends at a restaurant or you are avoiding your hearing loss because you worry that it will affect your job these are common responses that so many people face when they finally realize they have hearing loss. However, just imagine just how great it could be to be able to join in the conversation again and properly understand your friends, family, and colleagues. This is what our audiologists in Norwalk and New Canaan can do. Our team can perform a hearing evaluation to diagnose your hearing loss and to determine the extent of the damage. From there we can discuss your treatment options.

So many people with hearing loss can benefit from hearing aids. Another reason it’s highly advised that you see a doctor right away when you begin to notice hearing loss symptoms is that the sooner you start wearing a hearing aid, the sooner your ears and brain will adapt to the device and improve its effectiveness. We offer many different styles and special features and can work with your needs, lifestyle, and budget to find the hearing aid that will get you back into your social circle and enjoying your life again.

Interested? Give us a call

If you are struggling to understand those around you isn’t it time that you became part of the conversation again? Call Parker Ear, Nose & Throat in Norwalk or New Canaan, CT, today at (203) 866-8121 to schedule your appointment.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
November 07, 2019
Tags: sore throat  

How your otolaryngologist in Norwalk, CT, can help you feel better

If you have a sore throat, you’re not alone. It’s a very common problem and it can be caused by many different things. Your treatment willSore-Throat depend on what is causing your sore throat. Dr. Andrew J. Parker at Parker Ear, Nose & Throat in Norwalk and New Canaan, CT can help you feel better.

Causes of Sore Throats

A sore throat can be caused by a virus like a cold or the flu. In many cases, the sore throat will go away when the virus does. If your sore throat lasts for more than 5 to 7 days, it’s time to see your otolaryngologist.

A bacterial infection may also cause a sore throat. One of the most common bacterial infections is strep throat, caused by the Streptococcus bacteria. Dr. Parker can do an easy test to determine if you have strep throat. If your test is positive, he will prescribe antibiotics to clear up the infection and clear up your sore throat.

Tonsillitis is a common cause of sore throats in children. Tonsils can become infected and enlarged, causing breathing problems and other uncomfortable symptoms. Antibiotics, and over-the-counter pain medications and fever reducers are common treatments which help with tonsillitis. For severe cases, your otolaryngologist may recommend removing the tonsils.

Sinusitis Post-nasal drip caused by sinusitis or allergies can irritate your throat, resulting in pain and inflammation.

Injuries Have you ever developed a sore throat after a particularly exciting football game? Yelling or singing for long periods can cause a minor injury to the throat. Throat injuries may also occur if you experience neck trauma.

Don’t suffer with a sore throat when help is just a phone call away. Just pick up your phone and call Dr. Andrew J. Parker at Parker Ear, Nose & Throat in Norwalk and New Canaan, CT. Call (203) 866-8121 and get relief from your sore throat.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
August 21, 2019
Category: Otolaryngology
Tags: Hearing Aid  

Hearing loss, just like any other problem, requires prompt attention and care. While ideally, it should be obvious to know when hearing loss has occurred, sometimes the problem can gradually sneak up on us. Here are some of the signs that you or someone you love may want to turn to our Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, ENT doctor, Dr. Andrew Parker, for a hearing evaluation:

You Always Turn Up the Volume

A volume that may be perfectly normal for everyone else around you to hear may not be loud enough for you. You may regularly turn up the volume on the TV or radio in order to properly hear it, which may elicit complaints from those around you. If you find that friends, family, or colleagues are voicing complaints about the volume of your media or voice, you may want to see a hearing professional here at our Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, office.

It’s Difficult Hearing Others in a Crowd

Do you find that your hearing gets lost in the crowd? Is it difficult to understand what others are saying in noisy environments such as a busy restaurant? This is another telltale sign of hearing loss. It may cause you to disengage from conversation or ask people to repeat themselves often. Does this sound like you? If so, it’s time to give us a call.

You Catch Yourself Saying “What?” A Lot

Do you constantly have to ask people to repeat themselves when they are talking to you? Not only is this frustrating for you, but it’s also frustrating for people who are trying to communicate with you. If “what” has become a part of your daily vernacular, it’s time to get your hearing checked.

There is a Ringing in Your Ears

While ringing in the ears (also known as tinnitus) doesn’t necessarily mean that you have hearing loss often times the two do go together, particularly if hearing loss is due to exposure to loud and excessive noises. Either way, if you’re experiencing ringing in the ears you’ll want to go ahead and undergo a simple hearing test to make sure that you aren’t dealing with substantial hearing loss.

Concerned? Give Us a Call

If you are having trouble hearing those around you it’s time you did something about it. Call Parker Ear, Nose & Throat in Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, today at (203) 866-8121 to schedule a consultation.

By Dr. Andrew Parker
May 09, 2019
Category: Sleep Issues
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

The answer to better sleep could lie in treating your persistent snoring.

Does your partner complain that your snoring is out of control and it keeps them up at night? Are your snoring issues getting worse as you sleep apneaget older? Something could be an indicator that something more serious like sleep apnea is going on. Our Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, otolaryngologist Dr. Andrew Parker can help determine what’s causing your snoring and the best solution to give you a better (and quieter) night’s rest.

 

When Snoring is a Problem

While many people may snore occasionally due to alcohol consumption, allergies or a cold, if you are someone who snores loudly and quite frequently this could be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. During OSA, the upper airways constrict or collapse, blocking off air as well as oxygen to the blood.

Those with OSA do not get the quality rest they need, which can lead to problems throughout the day. If OSA goes untreated this can also lead to serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure.

 

Signs and Symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea

While the snorer often won’t notice any symptoms it’s usually their bed partner who alerts them to the issue that is going on. It’s important not to ignore these complaints, as they could be indicators that something more serious is going on with your health. Symptoms of OSA include,

  • Loud, persistent snoring
  • Daytime fatigue and exhaustion
  • Waking up throughout the night gasping for air
  • Pauses in breathing while asleep
  • Morning headaches
  • Dry mouth or sore throat
  • Mood swings
  • Brain fog and trouble concentrating
  • Issues with high blood pressure

 

How an Otolaryngologist Can Help

Here in Norwalk CT, our ENT doctors are dedicated to helping you control your symptoms to get restorative sleep and to prevent certain serious and chronic health problems. First, we will go through your medical history and ask you questions regarding your symptoms.

We will also perform a full examination of the nose, mouth, neck and throat. We will also check for any problems such as a nasal obstruction or infection that could be causing your snoring. If we suspect that your snoring is due to OSA we may recommend undergoing a home sleep study to diagnose your sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is often treated with CPAP therapy, Pillar implants, or surgery in some cases.

If you or a loved one is a chronically loud snorer then it’s high time that you turned to ENT specialist Dr. Andrew Parker in Norwalk and New Canaan, CT, that can treat this issue properly. If you snore or think you may be dealing with sleep apnea, then it’s time to give us a call. Call (203) 866-8121.





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