Ear Tubes: What Are They?
Ear infections are simple and easy to treat when they aren’t chronic, but when kids begin to suffer from recurring ear infections, your doctor may suggest eustachian tubes (ear tubes). Ear tubes help reduce the number of painful, frequent ear infections that kids can suffer from.
What are ear tubes?
Ear tubes are tiny cylinder-shaped tubes that are made of plastic. They are surgically inserted into the eardrum and should remain in place around 6 to 18 months. They typically fall out, and if not, a simple procedure is performed to remove them. Common names for ear tubes include:
- Tympanostomy Tubes
- Ventilation Tubes
- PE or Pressure Equalization Tubes
Ear tube surgery is quick and easy.
Ear tube surgery or Myringotomy is the procedure used to put tubes in place. It is performed under general anesthesia and typically takes around 15 minutes. During the procedure, the doctor will suction out any fluids from the middle ear, make a small incision in the eardrum, and insert the tube.
A myringotomy is a safe procedure that usually doesn’t come with complications. However, like every surgery, some risks include eardrum perforation, infection, or scarring.
Why does my child need ear tubes?
Ear infections are usually easy to treat, but when a child begins to suffer from multiple infections each year, they can cause long-term complications like hearing loss and cause extreme pain. Tubes are a way of avoiding the pain of recurring ear infections without medications or continued trips to the doctor.
Tubes come with many benefits. They help ventilate the middle ear to keep ear fluid from building up and causing those painful middle ear infections. Some other things that tubes can help include:
- Restore fluid-induced hearing loss
- Restore balance
- Alleviate speech problems
- Sleep and behavior issues caused by infections
Ear infection relief at ENTACC
If your child is suffering from chronic ear infections, ENTACC can create a treatment plan that will have them feeling better in no time.