What Happens If A Sinus Infection Is Left Untreated
A sinus infection can cause a long list of annoying problems, but if left untreated, your symptoms could continue for months on end. And in rare cases, very serious complications can develop.
In this blog, the board-certified physicians at New York ENT explain more about sinus infections and what can happen if theyre left untreated.
Excuse Me Why You Might Struggle To Hear
Hearing issues tend to be something that we couple with getting older. While you may become a little more hard of hearing as you enter your twilight years, theres nothing to say that you cant be suffering from hearing loss now. If you find that you need the volume of the TV to be cranked up further each week, you struggle to make out conversations, and your hearing seems muffled, you may have a hearing problem. This is nothing to be ashamed of. Take a look at what may be causing your hearing problem and explore what you can do to fix it.
While not the most glamorous cause of hearing loss, ear wax buildup is definitely the most common. Many people end up at their doctors surgery worried about being unable to hear and having a dullness to one of their ears. When the medical professional takes a look down the problem ear only to diagnose excess wax, the patient is always mortified. This is nothing to be embarrassed about. Wax is a normal substance produced in the ear canal to prevent debris, dust, and bacteria, causing harm to your ear. When this builds up too much, it can become hard and impacted, creating a plug in your ear canal. A simple ear drop administered every evening will soften the buildup of wax and allow it to naturally corkscrew out of your ear. If there is no infection present, your hearing should be back to normal within a couple of weeks.
How Can I Tell If My Child Has An Ear Infection
Most ear infections happen to children before theyve learned how to talk. If your child isnt old enough to say My ear hurts, here are a few things to look for:
- Tugging or pulling at the ear
- Fussiness and crying
- Fluid draining from the ear
- Clumsiness or problems with balance
- Trouble hearing or responding to quiet sounds
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How To Treat Dog Ear Infections With Vinegar
First, you must make sure your dogs eardrum is not perforated.
WARNING: Inserting liquids in the ears of dogs with a perforated eardrum can cause severe problems including head tilt and deafness.
If your dogs eardrum is intact, start the vinegar ear treatment.
First, make a mixture of half vinegar and half water and place them in a squirt bottle.
Next, completely fill your dogs ear canal with the mixture. Be careful not to let the solution get into your dogs eyes.
Gently massage the base of our dogs ear.
After massaging, allow your dog to shake his head.
The excess vinegar solution will come out, along with any debris from inside the ear canal.
You dont need to swab your dogs ear but might want to wipe debris from the ear flap.
Apple cider vinegar is best but may stain white or light-colored fur.
If your dog has white or light-colored, you may want to use distilled white vinegar instead.
How Are Chronic Ear Infections Treated
Treating an ear infection begins at home. To help soothe symptoms, gently press a warm washcloth against the affected ear. You may give your child eardrops and over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen to help relieve pain. Avoid aspirin, which can be dangerous to young children.
Your childs doctor will likely prescribe antibiotics to treat a chronic ear infection. These should be taken until used up, even if your childs symptoms appear to be improving otherwise, the infection could worsen.
When medication is not effective, a surgical solution involving ear tubes may be considered. These are inserted in the middle ear and provide ventilation and fluids, keeping the ear clear and preventing infection. Most ear tubes remain in place anywhere from six to eighteen months and eventually fall out on their own. If not, surgery to remove them is performed.
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Causes Of A Middle Ear Infection
Middle ear infections are caused by viruses and bacteria, often resulting from other conditions that can cause blockage and swelling of the eustachian tubes that connect the throat and the middle ear. When this happens, a vacuum is created, allowing germs and fluid from the throat to enter the middle ear. A middle ear infection develops when bacteria or viruses grow in this fluid.
Children are more susceptible to middle ear infections than adults, partly because their eustachian tubes are narrower, so they are more easily blocked. Children also have relatively larger adenoids than adults. These are masses of tissue situated at the point where the nose bends into the throat that are vulnerable to infection, swelling and inflammation Ã¢â¬â when this happens, they can block the eustachian tubes and cause a middle ear infection.
Fermented Foods For Depression
The last time I took a child to the doctor for an ear infection the doctor suggested I let the infection run its course. A shocker after 28 years of parenting. But in those 28 years, we have learned that overprescribing of antibiotics is causing more harm than good. Killing our healthy gut flora is one such harm. Read on to see what Abigail has discovered about the side-effects of an unhealthy gut.
Can eating fermented foods make you happier? It turns out that the joy procured from participating in making and consuming traditionally fermented foods is twofold. First, the process is pleasurable and serves as an enjoyable hobby and food storage method for many home preservationists. Second, many recent studies seem to suggest that a healthy gut may be a possible treatment for depression and anxiety.
Is there really a connection between gut health and the way our brains work? Scientists have been taking an interest in this very topic, and it turns out that the effects of a healthy microbiome are more far-reaching than just good digestion. The composition of the gut microbiota can affect physiology, contribute to various diseases, communicate with the central nervous system and even influence brain behavior and function.
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How Can I Prevent Ear Infections
The CDC offers several tips for reducing the risk factors that contribute to ear infections. These include:
- Staying up to date on childhood vaccines including the pneumococcal vaccine that helps protect against the Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria that can cause ear infections and the flu vaccine.
- Frequent handwashing by parents and caregivers
- Breastfeeding until at least 6 months passes on moms immunity to babies
- Avoid exposing your child to secondhand smoke
Babys first sick visit: its never fun, sometimes scary and often related to an ear infection. But dont worry if your pediatrician sends you home empty-handed at first. At Loudoun Pediatric Associates, well make sure your child gets what she needs in the case of an ear infection, whether its a round of antibiotics or a few days of rest and watchful waiting. Sometimes we need an antibiotic to give those germs the boot, but in other cases rest, fluids and lots of snuggles are the best prescription.
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Understand What Does And Doesnt Require An Antibiotic
Antibiotics work by killing bacteria, so they wont be effective for illnesses caused by viruses, like the common cold or the flu.
But sometimes, it can be challenging to tell which bug your child has. Green mucus, for instance, can result from a cold caused by a virus or from a sinus infection caused by bacteria. So symptoms alone arent a good indicator of whether your child needs antibiotics.
You dont have to worry about the color of the mucus, said Elizabeth Murray, D.O., a pediatric emergency medicine physician at the University of Rochester Medical Center. You dont have to save it and show us.
Parents may also think that if their child isnt getting better after a few days, she must have a bacterial infection. But viral infections like the flu can also be quite serious and a cough from a common cold can last for weeks, Dr. Murray said. So if your child has been sick for what seems like a long time, it doesnt necessarily mean she needs a prescription.
Sometimes, however, a child with a virus can develop a secondary bacterial infection, so its important for parents to be on the lookout for changing symptoms.
A concern for me would be if all of the sudden the fever comes back and theyre still coughing, Dr. Murray said. At that point, she continued, it might be time to perform a chest X-ray and look for other infections.
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Benefits Of Apple Cider Vinegar For Dogs
There are numerous benefits of apple cider vinegar for dogs. Apple cider vinegar has been shown to help reduce itchy skin from skin infections to poison ivy. It has also been used to rebalance the pH in the body to optimize immune health.
When dogs develop itchy ears or ear infections that often accompany allergies, apple cider vinegar can be used in mixtures to clean the ears and reduce yeast overgrowth.
Dilute apple cider vinegar can also be a safe and effective house cleaner and can be added to your dogs bath when they are experiencing skin conditions.
Because apple cider vinegar affects the pH of the body and appears to possess antibacterial effects, it can also be used to help reduce urinary tract infections in dogs.
Here is a list of some of the benefits of apple cider vinegar for dogs:
- Reduces itchy skin
- Acts as a safe and effective house cleaner
- Reduces GI symptoms like gassiness and burping
- Reduces recurrence of urinary tract infections
Adenoid And Tonsil Removal
Adenoid removal or adenoid and tonsil removal may help some children who have repeat ear infections or fluid behind the eardrum. Children younger than 4 don’t usually have their adenoids taken out unless they have severe nasal blockage.
To treat chronic ear infections, experts recommend removing adenoids and tonsils only after ear tubes and antibiotics have failed. Removing adenoids may improve air and fluid flow in nasal passages. This may reduce the chance of fluid collecting in the middle ear, which can lead to infection.
When used along with other treatments, removing adenoids can help some children who have repeat ear infections. But taking out the tonsils with the adenoids isn’t very helpful.footnote 2
Tonsils are removed if they are often infected. Experts don’t recommend tonsil removal alone as a treatment for ear infections.footnote 3
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How Do Ear Infections Happen
A middle ear infection usually happens because of swelling in one or both of the eustachian tubes . The tubes let mucus drain from the middle ear into the throat.
A cold, throat infection, acid reflux, or allergies can make the eustachian tubes swell. This blocks the mucus from draining. Then, or grow in the mucus and make pus, which builds up in the middle ear.
When doctors refer to an ear infection, they usually mean otitis media rather than swimmer’s ear . Otitis media with effusion is when noninfected fluid builds up in the ear. It might not cause symptoms, but in some kids, the fluid creates a sensation of ear fullness or “popping.”
What Is The Treatment For A Gastrointestinal Infection
In most cases, a gastrointestinal infection will go away on its own after a few days and does not require any specific medical treatment. Proper hydration is important, so plenty of fluids should be consumed during recovery. Over-the-counter or prescription medications may be used to treat the nausea associated with a gastrointestinal infection, although medications aimed at treating diarrhea are not usually recommended. Depending on the cause of the infection, antibiotics, antiviral medications, or anti-parasitic drugs may be prescribed. Any specific questions or concerns about the best gastrointestinal infection treatment options for an individual situation should be discussed with a doctor or other medical professional.
Maintaining proper hydration is one of the chief concerns when a gastrointestinal infection is present. Drinking plenty of fluids is often enough to prevent dehydration. In addition to water and fruit juices, soup or broth may be recommended. By combining these foods and beverages, both fluids and electrolytes are replaced in the body. If dehydration occurs, the patient may need to receive intravenous fluids in a hospital setting.
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Signs In Young Children
As babies are unable to communicate the source of their discomfort, it can be difficult to tell what’s wrong with them. Signs that a young child might have an ear infection include:
- raised temperature
- pulling, tugging or rubbing their ear
- irritability, poor feeding or restlessness at night
- coughing or a runny nose
- unresponsiveness to quiet sounds or other signs of difficulty hearing, such as inattentiveness
- loss of balance
What Causes Middle Ear Infections
Most middle ear infections occur when an infection such as a cold, leads to a build-up of mucus in the middle ear and causes the Eustachian tube to become swollen or blocked.
This mean mucus can’t drain away properly, making it easier for an infection to spread into the middle ear.
An enlarged adenoid can also block the Eustachian tube. The adenoid can be removed if it causes persistent or frequent ear infections. Read more about removing adenoids.
Younger children are particularly vulnerable to middle ear infections as:
- the Eustachian tube is smaller in children than in adults
- a child’s adenoids are relatively much larger than an adults
Certain conditions can also increase the risk of middle ear infections, including:
- having a cleft palate a type of birth defect where a child has a split in the roof of their mouth
- having Down’s syndrome a genetic condition that typically causes some level of learning disability and a characteristic range of physical features
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Fluid Buildup And Surgery
Doctors may consider surgery for children who have repeat ear infections or who keep getting fluid behind the eardrum. Procedures include inserting ear tubes or removing adenoids and, in rare cases, the tonsils.
Fluid behind the eardrum after an ear infection is normal. And, in most children, the fluid clears up within 3 months without treatment. If your child has fluid buildup without infection, you may try watchful waiting.
Have your child’s hearing tested if the fluid lasts longer than 3 months. If hearing is normal, you may choose to keep watching your child without treatment.
If a child has fluid behind the eardrum for more than 3 months and has significant hearing problems, then treatment is needed. Sometimes short-term hearing loss occurs. This is especially a concern in children ages 2 and younger. Normal hearing is very important when young children are learning to talk.
If your child is younger than 2, your doctor may not wait 3 months to start treatment. Hearing problems at this age could affect how well your child can speak. This is also why children in this age group are closely watched when they have ear infections.
How Do You Know When A Yeast Infection Is Gone
To know if your yeast infection is going away, you should experience these stages:
- First, you will notice that vaginal discharge has returned to a normal consistency and smell.
- Second, you will notice that itching has gone away, alleviating much of the discomfort associated with the infection.
- Third, you will notice that any rash, swelling, or redness has subsided. Your genitals should return to a healthy appearance and feel.
Other forms of yeast infection, like a yeast infection of the breast , may take longer to completely go away.
Talk to your doctor to make sure you are choosing the right treatment option for your yeast infection.
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Symptoms Of A Middle Ear Infection
A middle ear infection generally develops very rapidly.
Signs and symptoms in children may include:
- Ear pain
- A child may excessively pull, tug or touch their ears
Symptoms of a middle ear infection in adults may include:
- Ear pain
- Partial hearing loss/muffled hearing
- Fluid in the ear or yellow, clear or bloody discharge from the ears
It is important to consult a doctor when:
- Symptoms develop in a child of six months or younger
- A child displays symptoms for 48 hours or more and has a temperature of 39 C or more
- Symptoms show no sign of improvement after two or three days
- Symptoms become worse rather than better over the first few days
- Discharge presents itself
- Symptoms are experienced by a person with an underlying health condition, such as cystic fibrosis or congenital heart disease, which could make complications more likely
When Should I Call The Doctor
Very rarely, ear infections that don’t go away or severe repeated middle ear infections can lead to complications. So kids with an earache or a sense of fullness in the ear, especially when combined with fever, should be seen by their doctors if they aren’t getting better after a couple of days.
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