Should I Take My Child To A Health Professional
If you think your child has an ear infection, take them to your doctor or nurse practitioner. They will ask how your child has been feeling and behaving, and will look inside their ears with a special instrument for signs of infection. Sometimes, the pressure of the pus can cause the eardrum to burst and the pus leaks out of the ear this is a runny ear. Because there is no more pressure on the eardrum, the pain goes away and your child seems to be much better. But the ear infection is still there. Your child will need to see a doctor or nurse practitioner to check if the infection needs to be treated and to make sure the eardrum heals properly.
When Should I Go Back To My Health Professional
Always see your doctor, nurse or mobile hearing clinic if your baby or child has sore ears. You can also call Healthline on 0800 611 116.
Go back to your doctor or nurse practitioner if:
- an earache is not settling after 2 days
- a runny ear is not settling after 2 weeks
- your child has frequent ear infections.
Also, see your doctor or nurse practitioner again if there are any of the following symptoms:
- swelling, redness or tenderness in or around the ear
- other facial symptoms or vertigo
- vomiting or generally feeling more unwell
- stiff neck, sensitivity to light or ongoing poor eating.
For children, see your doctor or nurse for an ear check after 4 to 6 weeks to make sure the fluid has cleared.
Garlic May Interact With Some Medications
Garlic supplements should not be taken with medications that are transported by P-gp. This includes:
Because of the increased risk of bleeding associated with garlic supplements, talk to your healthcare provider about their use if you take an anticoagulant such as warfarin or if you need surgery.
Garlic supplements may interfere with the effectiveness of saquinavir and other medications, dietary herbs, or supplements.
Talk to your healthcare provider before taking any supplements, including garlic.
Earaches can be unbearably painful, but they dont always require antibiotics. In fact, more than 80% of ear infections get better on their own or with home care within 2-3 days. In most cases, using an over-the-counter pain relief medication is how to get rid of an ear infection fast.
How Can I Treat Earache
How you treat your earache depends on what is causing your pain.
If your pain is coming from a build-up of wax, you may need ear drops to soften the wax. You might need to have your ear canal cleaned by a health professional.
If your earache is caused by a middle ear infection, its likely to get better on its own within 7 days and usually wont need antibiotics. Until the pain gets better, you can use simple pain relief medicines like paracetamol or ibuprofen.
If your earache is caused by an outer ear infection, you may need a prescription for antibiotic ear drops to treat it. The drops may contain other medicines such as steroids.
Never try to remove something stuck inside your ear by yourself ask your doctor for help.
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What Tests Diagnose The Cause Of Sinus Infections And Sinusitis
Sinus infection is most often diagnosed based on the history and examination of a doctor. Because plain X-ray studies of the sinuses may be misleading and procedures such as CT and MRI scans, which are much more sensitive in their ability to diagnose a sinus infection, are so expensive and not available in most doctors offices, most sinus infections are initially diagnosed and treated based on clinical findings on examination. These physical findings may include:
- redness and swelling of the nasal passages,
- purulent drainage from the nasal passages ,
- tenderness to percussion over the cheeks or forehead region of the sinuses, and
- swelling about the eyes and cheeks.
Occasionally, nasal secretions are examined for secreted cells that may help differentiate between infectious and allergic sinusitis. Infectious sinusitis may show specialized cells of infection while allergic sinusitis may show specialized white blood cells of allergy . Physicians prescribe antibiotics if the bacterial infection is suspected. Antibiotics are not effective against viral infections many physicians then treat the symptoms.
In addition, both rigid and flexible endoscopy has been used to obtain diagnostic material from sinuses. These procedures are usually done by an otolaryngologist under topical and local anesthesia. Occasionally, there may be a need to sedate the patient. Some investigators suggest that endoscopy specimens are comparable to those obtained by needle puncture.
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Give Warm Or Cold Compresses A Go
One of the best ways of treating an ear infection at home is to give a warm or cold compress a go. Try a warm, damp washcloth or a heating pad to relieve your ear pain.
You can use both a warm and a cold compress and for best results, be sure to alternate between both. Keep the compress on for approximately ten minutes. It is an excellent pain relief method for individuals of all ages.
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What Are The Symptoms Of A Fungal Ear Infection
An explanation of the different types of ear infection and which parts of the ear are involved can be found in the .
This leaflet is about infection of the ear canal with a fungus. Other causes of otitis externa can be found in the .
Typically, the ear starts to look red and the skin on the outer part of the ear becomes scaly. It may start to itch and become quite uncomfortable. You may notice discharge beginning to leak out of the ear.
The itching is often worse with fungal infections than with other types of ear infection. Apart from this the symptoms of a fungal ear infection are often identical to ear infections caused by germs . This means your doctor may prescribe antibiotic ear drops to start with and may only suspect a fungal infection when the treatment doesn’t work.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Ear Infection In Dogs
Ear infections can be painful or itchy, so here are some common signs youll know something is wrong with your dogs ears.
- Head tilting towards the side with the infection
- Head shaking
- Crusty, scabby or red, irritated skin inside the ear flap
In severe cases your dog may experience
- Hearing loss
- Drooping of eyelids or mouth, drooling
- Dropping food, difficulty eating or drinking
If you see any of these serious symptoms, you need to see your vet.
But you can manage less severe ear infections at home. To get to the point, heres what to do if your dog has an ear infection now. But youll want to read the rest of the post later so you understand more about types and causes of ear infections and how to prevent them in the first place.
Can Middle Ear Infections Be Prevented
It’s not possible to prevent middle ear infections, but there are some things you can do that may reduce your child’s risk of developing the condition. These include:
- make sure your child is up-to-date with their routine vaccinations particularly the pneumococcal vaccine and the DTaP/IPV/Hib vaccine
- avoid exposing your child to smoky environments
- don’t give your child a dummy once they’re older than six to 12 months old
- don’t feed your child while they’re lying flat on their back
- if possible, feed your baby with breast milk rather than formula milk
Avoiding contact with other children who are unwell may also help reduce your child’s chances of catching an infection that could lead to a middle ear infection.
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When Should I Take My Child With An Ear Infection Back To The Doctor
Once an ear infection is diagnosed, your child should start to improve within 24 to 48 hours. Go back to your doctor if:
- an earache is not settling after 2 days
- fluid starts coming out of your child’s ear
- your child seems more unwell
There are some very rare complications of ear infections. You need to go back to a doctor immediately if your child:
- has any swelling, redness or tenderness in or around the ear
- is feeding poorly
- is floppy, sleepy or drowsy
- is becoming less responsive
- is not interested in surroundings
- complains of a stiff neck or light hurting their eyes
Always take your child to your family doctor for an ear check 4 to 6 weeks after any ear infection, to make sure the ear fluid has gone.
Always take your child to your family doctor for an ear check after any ear infection, to make sure the ear fluid has gone. Go to your doctor again 4 to 6 weeks after the ear infection.
What Research Is Being Done On Middle Ear Infections
Researchers sponsored by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders are exploring many areas to improve the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of middle ear infections. For example, finding better ways to predict which children are at higher risk of developing an ear infection could lead to successful prevention tactics.
Another area that needs exploration is why some children have more ear infections than others. For example, Native American and Hispanic children have more infections than do children in other ethnic groups. What kinds of preventive measures could be taken to lower the risks?
Doctors also are beginning to learn more about what happens in the ears of children who have recurring ear infections. They have identified colonies of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, called biofilms, that are present in the middle ears of most children with chronic ear infections. Understanding how to attack and kill these biofilms would be one way to successfully treat chronic ear infections and avoid surgery.
Understanding the impact that ear infections have on a childs speech and language development is another important area of study. Creating more accurate methods to diagnose middle ear infections would help doctors prescribe more targeted treatments. Researchers also are evaluating drugs currently being used to treat ear infections, and developing new, more effective and easier ways to administer medicines.
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Healing Time In Different Sections Of The Ear
The infections persist in the middle, the outer and inner part of the ear. Every part has its unique features. As a result healing time also depends on the section of the ear.
- Outer Causes of outer ear infection are different from a middle ear infection. The most common type of infection in the outer ear is bacterial infections. But fungal and viral infections can occur as well. It can last for a week or longer. Its symptoms are severe pain in the ear, purulent discharge, fever, etc.
- Middle The infection shouldnt last more than one or two days. After an ear infection clears up, fluid may remain in the middle ear and cause some of the more mild symptoms and can persist for several weeks to months. This condition is diagnosed as otitis media with effusion. Its symptoms are ear pain, feeling like your ear is clogged, Nausea, Reduced Hearing.
- Inner The infection exists for a long time in this section. Most commonly, viral is the reason for the inner ear infection. These viruses can be most of the flu and cold. Its symptoms are pain, fever, and reduced hearing. Nausea and tinnitus can also occur in an inner ear infection.
The Eustachian tube drains fluid and air from the middle ear. Blockage in the Eustachian tube may cause fluid to build up. This causes pain since it applies pressure on the eardrum. The fluid is also a fertile ground for bacteria growth and this leads to an ear infection.
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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Treatments Your Gp Can Provide
While otitis externa can clear up by itself, this can take several weeks without treatment. Your GP can usually prescribe medicated ear drops that speed up the healing process. These usually need to be taken several times a day for about a week.
There are four main types of ear drops used to treat otitis externa:
- antibiotic ear drops this can treat an underlying bacterial infection
- corticosteroid ear drops this can help to reduce swelling
- antifungal ear drops this can treat an underlying fungal infection
- acidic ear drops this can help kill bacteria
Sometimes you may be given medication thats a combination of the above, such as antibiotic and corticosteroid ear drops.
Once treatment is complete and the inflammation has settled, your doctor may want to re-examine your ear to check for any underlying physical problems that could have contributed to the condition, such as having an abnormal or perforated ear drum.
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Oregano Oil To Cure Ear Infection
This is one of the best remedies to cure ear infection. The anti-bacterial properties present in oregano oil helps to reduce the inflammation, swelling and pain that is caused by ear infection. All you need to do is apply oregano oil on the outside area of the ear and on the back. Leave it on the ear and back for about 15 to 20 minutes. Repeat this method in every few hours to get rid of ear infection completely.
Note: Do not put oregano oil inside the ear and do not use oregano oil if you are on blood thinning medications.
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Why Do Kids Get So Many Ear Infections
The NIH points to several reasons why kids are more likely to get ear infections:
- Childrens eustachian tubes are smaller and more level than those of adults. This means its harder for fluid to drain from the ear, so if a childs tubes get blocked by mucus from another respiratory infection, fluid may not drain properly.
- Childrens immune systems are still developing so it can be harder for them to fight infections.
- In children, if bacteria gets trapped in the adenoids , it can cause a chronic infection that gets passed to the eustachian tubes and middle ear.
My Ear Infection Wont Go Away
Most ear infections clear up with basic treatment, like a warm or cold compress on the ear, eardrops, and using anti-inflammatory over-the-counter drugs, like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. If your ear infection doesnt clear up, or if you have severe symptoms, call us at either of our Florida offices for a consultation, or book an appointment with us online.
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How Do I Know If My Child Has An Ear Infection
Older children will usually complain of an earache. While younger children might not be able to say they have an earache, they may:
- have an unexplained fever,
- tug or pull at their ears, or
- have trouble hearing quiet sounds.
Some children with an ear infection may also have fluid draining from the ear.
Infections Of The Inner Ear
Vestibular neuritis and labyrinthitis are disorders resulting from an infection that inflames the inner ear or the nerves connecting the inner ear to the brain. This inflammation disrupts the transmission of sensory information from the ear to the brain. Vertigo, dizziness, and difficulties with balance, vision, or hearing may result.
Infections of the inner ear are usually viral less commonly, the cause is bacterial. Such inner ear infections are not the same as middle ear infections, which are the type of bacterial infections common in childhood affecting the area around the eardrum.
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Who Is Most Likely To Get An Ear Infection
Middle ear infection is the most common childhood illness . Ear infections occur most often in children who are between age 3 months and 3 years, and are common until age 8. Some 25% of all children will have repeated ear infections.
Adults can get ear infections too, but they dont happen nearly as often as they do in children.
Risk factors for ear infections include:
- Age: Infants and young children are at greater risk for ear infections.
- Family history: The tendency to get ear infections can run in the family.
- Colds: Having colds often increases the chances of getting an ear infection.
- Allergies: Allergies cause inflammation of the nasal passages and upper respiratory tract, which can enlarge the adenoids. Enlarged adenoids can block the eustachian tube, preventing ear fluids from draining. This leads to fluid buildup in the middle ear, causing pressure, pain and possible infection.
- Chronic illnesses: People with chronic illnesses are more likely to develop ear infections, especially patients with immune deficiency and chronic respiratory disease, such as cystic fibrosis and asthma.
- Ethnicity: Native Americans and Hispanic children have more ear infections than other ethnic groups.