How To Find an ENT Specialist You Can Trust

AENT Team

December 13, 2021

Allergy Treatment

How To Find an ENT Specialist You Can Trust

An ENT specialist, also known as an otolaryngologist, can be an incredible boon to your overall well-being. They can perform procedures that open up your nasal passages for easier breathing, and they can help you pinpoint allergies so you can avoid triggers. Much like choosing any other doctor, you’ll probably have to visit several ENT doctors before deciding which one is right for you. As you begin that search and interview process, let’s learn how to find an ENT specialist you can trust. You deserve only the best care, and here’s how to get it.

Ask for Recommendations

Start the search process by asking your friends and family which doctors they see and like. Personal recommendations are more reliable than simple Internet search results. You can listen to that person’s experience with their ENT doctor. However, do keep in mind that an approach that works for some people may not work for others. Your sister may like a no-nonsense doc with a stringent care plan, but you may want a more flexible approach from your ENT specialist.

When you’ve compiled a list of doctors you’re interested in, search for them on the Internet and read other reviews if they’re available. If travel time is a concern, look for Houston allergists near you to narrow down your scope. The World Wide Web may also offer you other options for doctors your friends and family didn’t recommend. Gather as much information as possible before you begin your interview process.

Take Care of the Basics

Your list of prospective doctors may be a little long. Which ones are the closest to you? Sift through those names and find practices that are fairly close to you. (What “fairly close” means is up to you—how far are you willing to travel?)

Call each doctor’s office beforehand and ask a couple of crucial preliminary questions:

  • “Are you taking new patients?”
  • “Will you accept my insurance?” (This includes Medicare and Medicaid, if applicable.)

If the answer to both of those questions is yes, you can move forward with the next step.

Look for Credentials

Board certification is one of the most important credentials an ENT doctor can have. It declares that the doctor has taken several extra years of training on top of their medical degree! Plus, it demonstrates to you how much they care about maladies of the ear, nose, and throat. Look for additional awards and accreditations that set them apart from other doctors in the area.

In addition, when you do your preliminary research on each doctor, look out for any malpractice claims on their record. Has the doctor in question ever received disciplinary action? Avoid any ENT doctor who has scandals in their history. Doctors’ histories are a matter of public record and are easily searchable on the Internet. Sites like healthgrades.com compile information on doctors, from certifications to disciplinary actions.

Compile Your Questions

When you walk into your prospective ENT doctor’s office, have a list of thoughtful questions on hand that will help you get a feel for their process. These are only a few example questions, but write down each one you can think of. After all, this will be your doctor!

  • “Are you board-certified?”

Board certification ensures that your prospective doctor has completed additional years of training on top of their medical degree. Any ENT specialist worth their salt will have extra experience in maladies of—you guessed it—the ear, nose, and throat. If you’ve got irritating allergies or asthma in need of treatment, your primary care doctor won’t cut it.

  • “How do you prefer to communicate?”

Some doctors are more accessible than others. While one may accept questions via email or schedule telehealth appointments, others require you to come to your appointment in person. Do you want a doctor you can reach outside of regular office hours, or are you content with waiting for your scheduled appointment time? Depending on the nature and severity of your symptoms, you may feel more comfortable knowing you can reach out to your doctor anytime.

  • “What happens in the event of an emergency?”

Does your prospective doctor work with any hospitals in the area? If you have an asthma attack or allergic reaction and need to be taken to the emergency room, will your ENT doctor be able to treat you there? Continuity of care is important to many patients. Consider a doctor who partners with nearby hospitals and can see you in the unfortunate event of a health emergency.

Listen to Your Gut

After you interview each doctor, write down (or simply ponder) your feelings about them. Your relationship with this specialist will largely be informed by how well your personalities mesh with each other. One of the most important questions you can ask yourself is: “Do I like them?”

If they have a brash bedside manner and you would prefer a gentler personality, let that doctor go and keep looking. You deserve to feel at ease around your doctor. On the other hand, if your prospective doctor is very flexible and you’re looking for a more concrete care plan, look for a more authoritative specialist. The right ENT doctor for you will listen closely to your complaints and work with you on effective strategies for solving them.

If your prospective doctor cuts you off, or if they roll their eyes when you discuss your symptoms, move on. A doctor who thinks they know everything without listening to their patient is more likely to give them a care plan that doesn’t work. Shop around for a Houston allergist who will listen to you without judgment.

No matter what time of year it is, no matter what your ENT complaints are, you deserve a doctor who will provide you with only the best care. The first step to breathing easily is finding a specialist who shares your goals. When you know how to find an ENT specialist you can trust, the process won’t seem as daunting to you. The perfect otolaryngologist may be just around the corner—it’s time to seek them out!

How To Find an ENT Specialist You Can Trust

This entry was posted in Allergy Treatment on December 13, 2021 by AENT Team.

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