Adenoiditis: Description, Causes and Risk Factors:Adenoiditis is an inflammation of the adenoids. The adenoids are glands that are similar in structure and function to the tonsils. The tonsils are located in the throat, and the adenoids are located in the nasopharynx, which is the part of the throat that goes up into the nasal cavity. Both the adenoids and tonsils are tissues with immune system functions, similar to lymph nodes. They help to trap and get rid of bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms that enter the body through the oral cavity or the nasal cavity. The tonsils and adenoids are much more active in children, and they are also more prone to infection in younger people. The adenoids and tonsils are beneficial to have, except when they repeatedly become infected and cause health problems. In these cases, surgery to remove the adenoids or tonsils may be indicated.The lymphatic system performs several roles to help protect you from infection. Adenoids store white blood cells and antibodies that help to destroy possible infections threatening your health. Inflamed adenoids may not perform their function properly.Adenoiditis usually occurs after a child has another type of respiratory infection, such as the common cold. The adenoids become inflamed due to the primary infection, and then bacteria start to grow and cause a secondary infection in the adenoid tissue.Risk Factors:Recurring infections in the throat, neck, or head.
Contact with airborne viruses, germs, and bacteria.
You can help prevent infection in your adenoids, as well as those of your children, by eating healthy foods and drinking plenty of fluids. Getting enough sleep at night can also help. If your child has problems with their adenoids, seek the advice of her pediatrician.Symptoms:Adenoiditis may begin as a swelling or enlargement of the tissue. The swelling may block or restrict your airways. It can make it difficult to breathe through your nose.Other problems associated with swollen adenoids include:Trouble pronouncing certain letters of the alphabet, such as the letter “m”sounding “nasal” when speaking, as if you were talking through your nosesore or dry throat from breathing through the mouthbreathing through your mouth becomes more comfortable than breathing through your nose. It may be the only option for you if your adenoids are very swollen.
Snoring during the night or any time you sleep.
Signs of infection, such as a runny nose that produces green or discolored mucus.
You may experience a number of complications from adenoiditis. These complications may result in chronic or severe inflammation in adenoidal tissues that spread to other locations of the head and neck.Diagnosis:Your primary care physician may refer you over to a specialist called an otolaryngologist, or ear, nose and throat doctor (ENT). An ENT doctor has specialized training in infections, diseases and conditions of the ear, nose, and throat. You may undergo a physical examination to determine where the infection is located.Other tests include:Throat examinations using swabs to obtain samples of bacteria and other organisms.
Blood tests to determine the presence of organisms that may show in blood.
X-rays of the adenoids to determine their size and extent of infection.
The ENT doctor may require information about your family history to determine if your condition is hereditary.
Treatment:Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics to cure your infection. The use of antibiotics often proves successful in treating inflamed adenoidal tissue. Surgery to remove your adenoids may also be an option. Surgery is used to remove adenoids that:Do not get better with antibiotics.
Have recurring infections.
Exist alongside an underlying health issue, such as cancer or a tumor of the throat and neck.
Cause breathing and swallowing problems.
NOTE: The above information is educational purpose. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition.DISCLAIMER: This information should not substitute for seeking responsible, professional medical care.
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