As a nurse and a mother of 2 little ones, I have to say that getting the tubes put in was the best decision we could have made for our daughter (who was 2 at the time). I believe that the "theory" is 3 infections in 6 months - which can lead to hearing loss. That last part is what concerned us. In order to "convince" us that she needed them, our ENT did an extensive hearing test on her - and she had lost 30% of her hearing - that she could possibly recover after the tubes (which she did - thank God). It was nerve wrecking for us - I should say me, b/c I'm usually the one in the operating room with patients - now that the shoe was on the other foot, I didn't like it so much. Honestly, they wheeled her into surgery, my husband and I walked to the waiting room and 5-10 minutes later our ENT was walking towards us with a big smile on his face - all done! Wow - placing of the tubes isn't the hard part - it's getting the kids to sit still for the 10 seconds it takes to insert them - which is why they need the anesthesia. We got special made ear plugs (they did it at our ENT office) which we made our daughter wear religiously after her surgery during baths and swimming. She had 1 infection after the tubes - about 13 months later - which is here we discovered that her ear tube had fallen out! Yeah - she no longer needed it! The other one was almost out so the ENT removed that one with out our daughter even making a peep (it was sitting in the ear canal already). Just that 1 infection after the tubes and it's been 2 years since that one. Good luck to you in making this decision. Look at the literature out there regarding hearing loss and ear infections. It was an eye opener for us. Now that it's all said and done, we are very happy that we had the tubes. Our daughter was miserable with the infections and they never really "cleared up" - and she was allergic to Amoxicillin. We were constantly at the doctors with ear infections. I was a nervous Nelly about the procedure - but what mother isn't when it comes to their children? Good luck!