While you are probably familiar with tonsillitis, did you know your child’s adenoids can also become infected? Adenoid infections typically only affect children; this is because the tissues begin to shrink around the age of 5 or 6, and disappear completely in most people by the time they reach their teens.
What Causes Adenoiditis?
The adenoids are a pair of soft tissue masses located behind the nose and roof of the mouth.
Viruses and bacteria, especially the Streptococcus bacterium (responsible for strep throat), are the most common causes of infection. Other causes include adenoviruses, influenza, Epstein-Barr virus, enteroviruses and herpes simplex virus.
What Are the Symptoms of Adenoiditis?
Enlarged adenoids can block airflow through your child’s nose, which can lead to mouth breathing, snoring and a dry and sore throat. Yellow or green discharge from the nose can also occur. In addition to swollen adenoids, infected adenoids can lead to middle ear infections and sinusitis.
How Are Tonsillitis/Adenoiditis Treated?
Diagnosing an adenoid infection requires a physical examination and an in-depth exam of the throat and ears.
Surgical removal of the adenoids, known as an adenoidectomy, is reserved for chronic cases that do not respond to other forms of medical treatment.
Home remedies are usually recommended for infections caused by a virus. Your child should get plenty of rest and stay hydrated with fluids. Warm broth or tea and cold Popsicles are particularly effective at soothing pain and discomfort.
Pain and fever can be controlled with over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen and acetaminophen (but avoid aspirin, which can be harmful in children). Throat lozenges or cough drops can be given to children over the age of four.
Call Comprehensive ENT at (804) 228-4480 for more information or to schedule an appointment.