My Blog

Posts for: September, 2021

By Paul E. Burk, D.O.
September 27, 2021
Category: ENT Care

If you’ve ever experienced times where it feels like your nose is blocked off and you can’t breathe without fully opening your mouth, you know that it can be frustrating to deal with nasal breathing problems. There are many issues that may be plaguing you and causing issues with your ability to breathe through your nose. Dr. Paul Burk at Ear, Nose, and Throat Balloon Sinuplasty in Chesterfield, MO, can help explain different issues that can cause nasal breathing problems and how they can be treated.

What Could be Causing Nasal Breathing Problems?

There are many different types of issues that can affect your nasal cavity and make it hard to breathe normally. Some common issues that may be bothering you are:

  • Nasal obstruction
  • Chronic sinus infections
  • Recurring acute sinus infections
  • Facial pain
  • Deviated septum
  • Common cold

When dealing with things like nasal obstruction, there’s not always a cause that has to do with a disease or illness that you may be dealing with. You may have an object stuck inside the nose, such as dried mucus or a foreign object, which cuts off the nasal pathways and makes it difficult for you to breathe through your nose. If you have a foreign object in your nose, you’ll have to contact your doctor in Chesterfield, MO, as soon as possible for removal.

Chronic sinus infections or recurring acute sinus infections can be caused by other issues like a deviated septum and can make it extremely hard to feel comfortable breathing without obstruction. You may need to treat the underlying cause of your sinus infections in order to experience them less frequently. Other issues like facial pain can also be caused by sinus infections and can affect your ability to breathe and to just feel comfortable in your everyday life.

Contact Your ENT Doctor Today

Don’t let nasal breathing issues take over your whole life. Enjoy your highest quality life by contacting Dr. Paul Burk at Ear, Nose, and Throat Balloon Sinuplasty in Chesterfield, MO, to learn more about what can cause your nasal breathing problems. Call today at (314) 576-7503.

By Paul E. Burk, D.O.
September 17, 2021
Category: ENT Condition
Tags: Sinus Pain   Allergy  

Be able to recognize when your sinus pain may require an ENT’s care.

Facial pain and pressure can be brutal. If these issues flare up throughout the year then you may just blame allergies; however, would you be able to tell whether your symptoms are truly due to allergies or whether something more problematic could be at play? This is when you may want to turn to our Chesterfield, MO, ENT doctor Dr. Paul Burk for answers. In the meantime, here’s how to tell that your sinus issues could be more than simply allergies,

Recognize Allergy Symptoms

Allergies flare up when you come in contact with your triggers, whether that’s pet dander, mold or pollen. While allergies can occur any time of year, if you have seasonal allergies you may notice that your symptoms are worse during the fall and spring months. Common symptoms include,

  • Itchy, watery and red eyes
  • Itchy nose and face
  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Nasal congestion
  • Chest tightness
  • Wheezing
  • Hives (itchy skin rash)

Signs It’s More Than Just Allergies

Did you know that sinus infections often occur after dealing with allergies or the common cold? This is why your stuffy nose may stick around for a few weeks after your allergy symptoms have gone away. Sinusitis is often acute, which means that it will clear up within 2-4 weeks on its own; however, if you experience nasal congestion and facial pain and pressure for more than three months, this is a sign of chronic sinusitis. If you are experiencing symptoms of chronic sinusitis you must turn to our Chesterfield, MO, ENT doctor for an evaluation.

How Chronic Sinus Pain is Treated

First, Dr. Burk and his team will need to determine what is causing your sinus pain before they can craft a treatment plan. If you are dealing with allergies, Dr. Burk will provide you with medication options to help manage your symptoms along with lifestyle modifications aimed at reducing your exposure to allergens and triggers.

If your sinus pain is due to chronic sinusitis, treatment may include nasal saline and steroid sprays, allergy medications, injectable medications (if nasal polyps are causing your sinus pain), or minimally invasive procedures such as balloon sinuplasty (which can help to alleviate blockages and improve nasal breathing).

If you are dealing with severe, persistent sinus pain, or if you’ve never visited an ENT for an evaluation, it’s high time you got answers and the proper treatment. Our ENT specialist, Dr. Burk, has been providing trustworthy ear, nose and throat care to the Chesterfield, MO, area for more than three decades. To schedule an appointment with our team, call us at (314) 576-7503.

By Paul E. Burk, D.O.
September 17, 2021
Category: ENT Care
Tags: Sinus Issues  

Get your sinus problems under control with these helpful tips.

We understand that chronic sinus problems can impact your health, daily routine and quality of life. The goal of our Chesterfield, MO, ENT doctor Dr. Paul Burk is to make sure that every patient has the tools, treatments and education needed to be able to get their sinus problems under control so that they can get back to what really matters in life. Here are some helpful tips for living well with chronic sinus problems,

Invest in a Humidifier

If you battle regular sinus problems, a humidifier is going to be your new best friend. This handy little device can help add moisture back into the air, which can help with nasal congestion and preventing the nasal cavities from drying out (if you’re prone to dry nasal cavities and nosebleeds, having a humidifier will be particularly helpful). We recommend placing it in the bedroom to help manage your symptoms while you sleep, which will also help you wake up feeling your best.

Perform Daily Saline Rinses

If you don’t have a neti pot but you’re dealing with sinus problems, this is going to provide you with some wonderful relief. A neti pot rinses out the nasal passages with saline-infused water, which helps to reduce inflammation while also clearing out all the bacteria, mucus and gunk that makes it more challenging to breathe. Some people find relief by simply performing this once a day, but you may wish to do this in the morning and again at night (especially if you feel a sinus infection brewing).

Stay Hydrated

Most Americans do not drink enough water, which is unfortunate because staying hydrated offers a wide range of benefits, from boosting brain fog and energy levels to flushing out toxins. If you dealing with sinus problems, one of the best things you can do is to drink lots of water. This is particularly great for alleviating congestion, as dehydration can make this issue worse.

Consider Balloon Sinuplasty

If you have been dealing with chronic sinusitis and you aren’t getting relief through home care or these tips above, then it may be time to speak with our Chesterfield, MO, ENT doctor about balloon sinuplasty. This procedure provides our chronic sinusitis sufferers with a safe, effective and minimally invasive procedure that doesn’t require any cutting or incisions to open up the nasal passages, clear out blockages and improve nasal breathing. If you are tired of having trouble breathing through your nose, balloon sinuplasty may be right for you.

For more than 30 years, Dr. Burk has been the premiere ENT doctor not just in Chesterfield, MO, but the entire St. Louis, MO, area. If you are looking for an expert in treating and managing chronic sinus issues, then call us at (314) 576-7503 to schedule an evaluation.

By Paul E. Burk, D.O.
September 14, 2021
Category: ENT Condition
Tags: Sinus Headaches  

A sinus headache may feel like an infection in the sinuses and you can experience pressure and discomfort around your eyes, cheeks, and forehead. This can really detract from your quality of life and can make it difficult to participate in work or daily activities. Dr. Paul Burk at Ear, Nose, and Throat Balloon Sinuplasty in Chesterfield, MO, can help you understand what a sinus headache is and how it can be treated so that you can live comfortably.

Symptoms of a Sinus Headache

A sinus headache can feel similar to a migraine, but with slightly different symptoms. The similarity in pain overlaps for the two and it’s important to note that a sinus headache isn’t usually accompanied by feelings of nausea or irritation from bright lights.

Some common symptoms of a sinus headache are:

  • Pain and pressure around the cheeks, brow, or forehead
  • Pain that worsens as you bend over or lie down
  • Stuffy nose
  • Exhaustion and fatigue
  • An achy feeling in your top teeth.

If your sinus headache starts causing you to miss work or school and really impacts your life, it may be time to talk to your doctor in Chesterfield, MO, about how you can relieve the symptoms associated with a sinus headache.

Treating a Sinus Headache

Your doctor may first recommend some over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. This can help relieve some of the pain and pressure associated with a sinus headache. Depending on the severity of your case, your doctor will look at other treatments such as nasal sprays, or other medication if your headache is related to allergies, that can help you feel comfortable enough to participate in your usual activities.

Contact Your Doctor Today

Learn how to control your sinus headaches today. Contact Dr. Paul Burk at Ear, Nose, and Throat Balloon Sinuplasty in Chesterfield, MO, at (314) 576-7503 to learn more about sinus headaches and how they can be treated.

By Paul E. Burk, D.O.
September 10, 2021
Category: ENT Condition
Tags: Sinus Infection  

Symptoms such as nasal congestion and difficulty breathing through the nose are signs of a sinus infection, also known as sinusitis. If you suffer from chronic sinus infections, help is available. At Ear Nose and Throat Balloon Sinuplasty in Chesterfield, MO, our ENT physician Dr. Paul Burk utilizes several methods, including balloon sinuplasty, to treat chronic sinusitis.

Symptoms of a Sinus Infection

A sinus infection is a nasal condition associated with inflammation or a blockage in the sinus passages that interferes with their ability to drain properly. Several symptoms can develop as a result of a sinus infection, including :

  • Difficulty breathing through the nose
  • Facial pain and swelling
  • Sinus headaches
  • Nasal congestion
  • Postnasal drip
  • Throat irritation and cough

Treating Sinus Infections

When the sinus passages have been inflamed and swollen for at least two months, a patient is considered to have chronic sinusitis. Common causes of chronic sinusitis include a persistent infection, a deviated septum, or nasal polyps. All of these factors can lead to blocked sinus pathways, making it difficult for the sinus to adequately drain.

There are several ways to treat chronic sinusitis or sinus infections. Experienced ENT physician Dr. Burk at our Chesterfield, MO office can develop an individualized treatment plan tailored to your needs. Methods for treating chronic sinus infections include:

  • Nasal sprays
  • Pain relievers
  • Corticosteroids
  • Balloon sinuplasty

Balloon Sinuplasty

When more conservative treatment methods, such as nasal sprays or corticosteroids, have not delivered complete relief from chronic sinus infections, balloon sinuplasty is recommended. The goal of balloon sinuplasty is to open up the sinus passages so the patient can breathe more easily without nasal congestion, inflammation, discomfort or other symptoms typical of chronic sinusitis.

Balloon sinuplasty is an outpatient procedure performed under local anesthesia. It is minimally invasive and does not involve surgery. During the procedure, a guided wire is used to gently insert and place a balloon catheter into the inflamed sinus passages. The balloon is then inflated to open up and widen the sinuses. Next, the sinus passages are flushed out with a gentle saline solution to remove mucus buildup. Once the sinuses have been cleared, the balloon is deflated and removed.

Recovery from balloon sinuplasty is quite short and most patients are ready to resume normal activities within just a few days. Following the procedure, the sinuses will remain open.

If you regularly experience the symptoms of a sinus infection, you could be dealing with chronic sinusitis. Many options are available for treating chronic sinusitis. An ENT physician can recommend the right treatment method for your symptoms and needs. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Burk in Chesterfield, MO, call Ear Nose and Throat Balloon Sinuplasty at (314) 576-7503.