Tag Archives: South Valley

How to Tackle (achoo) Spring Allergies

March 28th, 2017

children-allergies-ftrSeasonal allergies are no fun. Whether you’ve dealt with them since elementary school, or are just now discovering the sneezing, sniffling, congestion and itchy eyes for the first time as an adult, welcome to the club — every spring, 36 million in the U.S. grab a box of tissues and brace for the next six to ten weeks of air-borne misery. There are plenty of ideas out there on how to treat allergies … some of it more useful than others. See if you can spot the fact from fiction below:

Does living in a desert cure allergies?
Nope.
Don’t park your trailer in the west desert just yet. Grass and ragweed pollens are found nearly everywhere. A new environment might ease your symptoms temporarily, but the relief could be short-lived. New allergens are probably lurking, ready to trigger a reaction.

Does eating local honey cure allergies?
Unfortunately, No.
Some people try and use honey as a natural remedy for allergies. But most reactions aren’t triggered by the type of pollen found in honey. Even a Pooh-Bear sized jar of it won’t build your immunity. Enjoy it with butter on toast, but know that even local varieties probably won’t ease your symptoms.

Will I outgrow my seasonal allergies?
Sorry Kid.
Most won’t, especially if they have hay fever (allergic rhinitis). A study in Sweden tracked 82 people with hay fever and found that 99% still had it 12 years later. But 39% did say they had some improvement.

Can the pollen count predict bad allergy days?
Actually, Yes.
Pollen counts measure how much of the fine yellow dust is in the air over a period of time. A high count means you’re more likely to have symptoms when you go outside. You can use it to decide whether to play outdoors, or instead catch up on Netflix for the day.

Does rain clear the air of pollen?
Yes, Depending …
Temperature, time of day, humidity, and rain can affect levels of pollen. If you have allergies to pollen, the best time to go outside is right after a good storm. Pollen counts run lowest on chilly, soggy days. But mold spores, on the other hand,  show up in damp weather. You’re most likely to have an allergic reaction to mold on wet summer days.

Can allergy shots help?
We know this one for a fact.
They aren’t a cure, but if you have bad allergies, they might help. Regular injections greatly reduce some people’s reactions to certain allergens. (There are also under-the-tongue meds that work the same way.) Allergy shots help your body get used to the things that trigger an allergic reaction. In time, your symptoms will get better and you may not have symptoms as often.

You may want to consider allergy shots — called “immunotherapy” — if you have symptoms more than 3 months a year and medicines don’t give you enough relief. At first, you’ll go to your doctor once or twice a week for several months. You’ll get the shot in your upper arm. It’ll contain a tiny amount of the allergen — pollen, mold, dander, or bee venom, for example. The dose will go up gradually until you get to what’s called a maintenance dose. After that you’ll probably get a shot every 2-4 weeks for several months. Then your doctor will gradually increase the time between shots. During that time, your allergy symptoms will get better and may even go away.

If you want to know if immunotherapy might be right for you, make an appointment to talk to one of our friendly doctors. We’ll keep the box of kleenex handy.

References:

http://www.webmd.com/allergies/guide/allergy-shots#1
http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/discomfort-15/tame-allergies/slideshow-allergy-myths-facts

Dr. Brian Peterson: Cochlear Implant Specialist

February 6th, 2015

Dr. Brian Peterson specializes in cochlear implantation, a hearing option available to both children and adults who are unable to benefit from traditional hearing aids. It is approved by the FDA for use in patients even as young as 12 months old with severe to profound hearing loss in both ears.

Recent technologic innovations have dramatically improved the function and appearance of cochlear implants. It can be used by patients who have been recently impaired or those who have had a hearing loss since birth. Because of his specialty with the ear, Dr. Peterson has extensive experience with this procedure. For questions about the program, call 801-566-8304. Read more about Dr. Peterson here.

What Causes Hearing Loss
Hearing loss in adults can either be inherited or acquired from a variety of conditions including illness, ototoxic type drugs, loud noise exposure, tumors, head injury, or the aging process. This loss may occur by itself or with tinnitus.

Significant hearing loss can be caused by many conditions, including:

  • Ototoxic medications – a condition caused by certain medications including aminoglycoside antibiotics, salicylates in large quantities (aspirin), loop diuretics, and drugs used in chemotherapy regimens.
  • Noise-induced hearing loss – a gradual and painless hearing loss that damages the hair cells in the inner ear. It is caused from listening to loud noise for long periods of time.
  • Otosclerosis – a middle ear disease affecting movement of the bones, which is often surgically treatable.
  • Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease – a sudden hearing loss is fast, dramatic, and should be medically treated as soon as possible.
  • Ménière’s disease – an inner ear condition most common between the ages of 30 and 50.
  • Acoustic trauma – or a single exposure to an extremely loud sound such as an explosion can cause a sudden loss of hearing.
  • Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) – a skull fracture, a hole in the eardrum, and damage to the middle ear structures.
  • Acoustic neuroma – a tumor that causes hearing loss.
  • Presbycusis – a sensorineural hearing loss that occurs gradually later in life.

What is a Cochlear Implant?
A cochlear implant is an electronic device with two portions. The external portion sits behind the ear and is surgically planted under the skin. The implant generates signals that are then circulated to the brain by way of the auditory nerve, which then is able to recognize signals and sounds. Unlike a hearing aid, it does not make sound louder or clearer. Instead, the device bypasses damaged parts of the auditory system and directly stimulates the nerve of hearing, allowing individuals who are profoundly hearing impaired to receive sound.

coclear_implant_graphic

Referrals to Dr. Brian Peterson are accepted from any medical or healthcare provider.  South Valley Ear Nose & Throat requests that all referrals be accompanied by the following:

  • Medical history including any medications you are currently taking
  • Other than hearing loss, information about any other current diagnosis or assessment.
  • Information regarding hearing aids and usage history
  • Contact information for any other medical or healthcare professionals involved in the care of the referred case

For more information about this program or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Peterson, call 801-566-8304.