We all know that regular exercise help you maintain a healthy weight. What you may not know is that regular exercise also promotes good ENT–as in ear, nose and throat–health? That’s right, the health benefits you get from working out also extends to those parts of the body that we often take for granted until they stop working properly.

Here are some ways that exercise and ENT connect.

Conditions that Affect the Ear, Nose and Throat

Otolaryngology is the field of medicine that focuses on diseases and disorders of the ear, nose and throat (ENT) and related structures of the face and neck, which includes the sinuses, larynx and mouth. Otolaryngologists are often also referred to as ENT doctors. Conditions that affect the ear, nose and throat include:

  • Ear infection
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • Swimmer’s Ear
  • Hearing loss
  • Sinusitis
  • Nasal polyps
  • Deviated septum
  • Laryngitis
  • Swallowing disorders
  • Sore throat
  • Tumors in the head and neck (mouth, throat, nose/sinuses, voice box and upper esophagus)

How Exercise Affects Ear, Nose and Throat Health

Exercise strengthens the body’s immune system, enabling it to fight off bacterial and viral infections. People who exercise tend to get sick far less than people who live sedentary lifestyles. Therefore, exercise may prevent or minimize the occurrence of ENT conditions such as ear infections and sinusitis. Exercise also is very effective in preventing inflammation, which is a common symptom of many health conditions including those that affect the ear, nose and throat.

Stress serves as our natural protector. In times of danger or situations requiring an immediate reaction or response, stress is what sharpens our focus and concentration. It boosts our strength and reflexes, all of which enables us to perform in urgent or extenuating circumstances. Excessive stress, however, is harmful to our health. It lowers your immunity and weakens the body and mind. A weakened body is more susceptible to disease. Exercise is a very effective stress-reducer, and it also has been shown to improve your mental health.

Getting Started

If you currently work out regularly, keep it up! If you are significantly overweight or obese, sedentary or have not exercised in a long time, get your doctor’s approval before beginning an exercise regimen.

Choose several activities that you can do and enjoy doing so you can alternate your workouts to avoid monotony and boredom. As you become more fit, you can try and add new activities to add to your routine.

Exercise, combined with a healthy diet, can keep your ear, nose and throat health at its peak and benefit your overall health.