Choosing an otolaryngologist (ENT) is no different selecting any other health care professional. You want someone who is skilled and experienced in treating your condition and is comfortable to be around. However, not all otolaryngologists are right for you. So before decide on one, make sure to look into a few essential considerations.
The age of the patient certainly matters. Pediatric otolaryngology is, of course, a specialty field for children who have some ENT issues. Sometimes, the otolaryngologist has no specialized in pediatrics but has a long experience in treating kids. There is no specifiec field of geriatric otolaryngology, but for older patients, it is best to go with someone who has more experience with ENT problems that are associated with advanced age. In other words, spend time researching your potential doctor’s practice background before deciding to choose them.
Although all otolaryngologists are trained in ears, nose and throat conditions, some of them may specialize in certain areas, such as allergy, laryngology, head and neck, rhinology and so on. What’s important is that you choose a doctor who specializes in laryngology, just as you would consult a rhinology expert if you were having problems with your nose.
Looking for Prospects
Despite its flaws, the Internet has done many great things for humanity, including people looking for the right doctors to treat them. Start by checking websites of that maintain doctor databases by location. You can also approach your local medical bar association to ask for references. Or ask any ER personnel at your nearest hospital to give you a list of otolaryngologists in their institution.
Of course, your best source of information would be people you actually know and trust. Ask friends, relatives, colleagues, etc. who may have seen an otolaryngologist they were happy about. You can also read online reviews but be sure to choose your sources. Popular independent consumer websites like Angie’s List and Yelp are obviously more reliable than marketing websites that are naturally biased.
If you tend to be picky about the gender of your doctor, don’t feel guilty. That’s within your rights. Your comfort matters when it comes to treatment outcomes, so don’t hesitate to choose a laryngologist partly based on gender. Your cooperation as a patient is crucial to your speedy recovery, and the doctor you choose will obviously play a huge part in all of it.
Nobody appreciates having to travel long distances just to see a doctor. This is particularly true if you have extreme weather to consider. A lot of otolaryngologists have several offices in various locations, so you should check on that. Ask them about their office hours and emergency availability too. Will they be around on weekends? How about evenings? It’s obviously important to choose a dentist who will be around when you have time to see them.
Lastly, consider whether the otolaryngologist you’re eyeing accepts your insurance. There’s no need to waste your health investment by choosing a doctor who won’t allow coverage. There are many good otolaryngologists who work with a whole range of insurers, so this shouldn’t be an issue.