What Causes Ear Infections
Ear infections are the most common infections of the middle ear. They come with pain, a sensation that the ear is clogged up and can even affect our hearing.
They are usually caused by bacteria in the middle ear, but they can also be viral. More often this happens because of another illness that causes one of your Eustachian tubes to swell or become blocked.
This results in a build-up of fluid in the spaces of the middle ear. The pain is the result of this build-up of fluid and the accompanying inflammation increasing pressure on your eardrum.
Symptoms Of Ear Infections
- The main symptom is an earache.
- Younger children will cry, act fussy or have trouble sleeping because of pain.
- About 50% of children with an ear infection will have a fever.
- Complication: In 5% to 10% of children, the eardrum will develop a small tear. This is from the pressure in the middle ear. The ear then drains cloudy fluid or pus. This small hole most often heals over in 2 or 3 days.
How To Treat An Infected Cartilage Piercing Heal Fix What To Do Treatments
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With a clear knowledge on causes and symptoms of an infected pierced cartilage, it is worthwhile looking at some of the ways on how to treat an infected cartilage piercing. These ways to fix a pierced cartilage will both be home remedies as well as the use of medications.
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What Ear Piercings Are Most Likely To Become Infected
There are so many options for spots on your ear you can pierce and, TBH, you can get an infection anywhere. That said, some spots are riskier than others. Piercings that go through ear cartilage are much more likely to become infected and are more difficult to treat than infections through the ear lobe or the soft tissues just above the lobe, Dr. Kaplan says.
Dr. Mankarious agrees. “Piercing infections are most likely to occur in areas where the blood supply is low and cartilage is notorious for a low blood supply,” she explains. “Cartilage infections can be particularly dangerous just for that reason.” In other words, it’s difficult for antibodies and antibiotics to reach the infection site when it’s in your cartilage, giving the infection the opportunity to take over.
Inexpensive And Wrong Jewelry
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Secondly, some people suffer from allergic reaction that often lead to more serious infection due to the use of wrong jewelry. Nickel for instance has been noted to cause allergic reaction to many people. Ensure you only use jewelry made from stainless steel, gold or titanium. Furthermore, avoid going for a post that is too tight or loose.
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How To Tell If My Ear Infection Is Getting Better Or Worse
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Anatomy Of An Ear Infection
The ear is divided into the outer ear, middle ear, and inner ear. Infection can occur in any of these areas, but bacterial infections of the inner ear are extremely rare.
Different types of germs can cause infections in the ear, including bacteria, viruses, and even fungi. Infections can be brought on by an illness, such as a cold or allergies.
Ear infections generally occur when a germ gains entry into one of the three areas of the ear and grows there.
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Signs And Symptoms Of An Ear Infection
Ear infections can be caused by bacteria or viruses and occur when fluid builds up in the middle ear, which is normally filled with air. They are usually accompanied by an ache, which is a result of the area in the middle ear becoming inflamed. The earache may affect one or both ears, but most of the time its in one ear.
Adults describe an ear infection like kidney stones it can be super painful until it’s cleared, Dr. Chandrasekhar says. It may be dull, sharp, or burning, and it may feel constant or come and go.
The symptoms of ear infections of the middle ear usually occur suddenly. Adults typically will experience ear pain, and they may have trouble hearing or experience fluid draining from the ear. They may also feel dizzy and experience vertigo.
Children with ear infections may experience the same symptoms, as well as:
- Trouble sleeping
- Drainage from the ear , which could be a sign that the eardrum has ruptured
Signs of infections within the ear canal can include ear redness, swelling, tenderness, and discharge.
Is My Ear Piercing Infected
By chronicon February 21, 2018
Is my ear piercing infected? Its a question every piercing studio is familiar with. Identifying an infection is often difficult, especially if its your first piercing. Many of the symptoms of an infection are similar to the side effects of a new piercing.
Put your mind and ears at ease with this handy guide. We take a look at:
- How to identify infection
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Cleaning Your Ear Canal
If earwax or loose material is blocking your ear canal, it can stop ear drops from working properly.
If you think you have too much earwax, you shouldnt try to remove it yourself. Using cotton buds or other objects to try to clean earwax out of your ears can push it further inside and block your ear. You might also damage the skin inside your ear canal, which can lead to an ear infection.
Instead, your GP may suggest one of the following methods to clean your ear canal before you use ear drops. Sometimes they may need to refer you to a specialist in ear, nose and throat conditions for these procedures.
- Syringing and irrigation. This gently washes out any earwax and debris blocking your ear canal.
- Dry swabbing. This means using dry cotton swabs to gently remove any loose material from your ear canal.
- Microsuction. This involves using a device to gently suction out wax and any other material from your ear. Your doctor will do this procedure using a microscope to view your ear.
If your ear canal is very swollen, your doctor may suggest inserting an ear wick into your ear. This can only be done by a specialist. An ear wick is a small sponge pad. Once its in your ear, it can be soaked with an antibiotic solution. This allows drops to fall deep into your ear. The wick is usually left in place for at least a couple of days. Generally, your doctor or nurse will remove it but it may fall out on its own.
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Neilmed Neilcleanse Piercing Aftercare
NeilMed Neilcleanse Piercing Aftercare saline spray helps in healing piercings. It is an isotonic, drug-free, preservative-free solution for cleaning your piercing during the healing period with no burning or stinging to irritate the pierced area. The sterile saline solution can be used as part of your healing process with any fresh piercing, including ear piercings, nostril piercings and belly button piercings. Neilcleanse sprays in any direction for easy use without touching your piercing.
Salt Or Chamomile Soaks
A salt or chamomile soak serves a dual purpose. For one, it relieves the swelling, redness, and pain. Secondly, it helps to clean the infected piercing. A salt soak is generally more effective, but chamomile is better for sensitive skin. You can do as many chamomile soaks per day as desired, but only 2 salt soaks are recommended per day.
How to make a soak:
- Boil 1 cup of water
- Add ¼ teaspoon of sea salt and stir until dissolved OR brew 1 chamomile tea bag
- Perform a salt soak by dipping a cotton pad into the solution and appling to the infection for 2 minutes
- For a chamomile soak, dip a cotton pad into the solution, or use the tea bag, and apply to the infection until it cools.
For both, you want to use hot water, but let it cool down enough that you wont hurt or damage your skin before dipping the cotton pad.
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Causes Of Ear Infection
Ear infections are typically caused by viral or bacterial infections, often as a result of other conditions such as a cold or flu. In the case of otitis media, these illnesses can result in a blockage of the Eustachian tubes. This blockage creates a vacuum which allows bacteria to enter the middle ear.
In the case of outer ear infections, certain factors make the occurrence more likely. These include:
- Substances in the ear: Water or other substances in the ear may create an environment where an accumulation of bacteria becomes more likely. This can cause infection. The subsequent itching after infection can cause skin irritation, which may make an infection worse. As otitis externa is common in people who swim regularly, the condition is sometimes referred to as swimmerâs ear.
- Warm weather: The condition is more common in warmer countries.
- Skin issues: Irritated skin, as a result of skin problems such as eczema, may make otitis externa more likely.
- Otitis media: Ear discharge as a result of otitis media can sometimes become lodged in the ear and cause otitis externa.
Inner ear infections , in most cases, follow a viral infection, such as a cold or the flu. Less commonly, labyrinthitis can be caused by an infection that affects the rest of the body, such as measles, mumps and glandular fever. In rare cases, both labyrinthitis and vestibular neuritis can be caused by a bacterial infection.
Frequently Asked Questions About Outer Ear Infections
Youll need to lie down while you put ear drops in, and it can help to have someone else put them in for you.
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What Does The Doctor Do
The doctor will look into your ear with a special flashlight called an otoscope . With the otoscope, the doctor can see your eardrum, the thin membrane between your outer and middle ear.
The doctor may use the otoscope to blow a little puff of air in your ear. Why? To see if the air causes your eardrum to move the way a healthy eardrum does. An infected eardrum won’t move as it should because the pus presses against it and may make it bulge. An infection also can make the eardrum red.
If you have an ear infection, the doctor will make a decision about what to do next. He or she might ask your parent to watch you over the next day or two to see if you get any better. The doctor also might suggest a pain reliever to keep you comfortable.
If bacteria are causing the problem, the doctor might prescribe a medicine called an antibiotic , which usually clears up a bacterial infection, so you’ll feel better in a few days.
If you are given an antibiotic, it’s very important to keep taking the medicine for as many days as the doctor instructs even if your ear stops hurting. If you don’t take all the medicine, the infection could come back and your ear will start hurting again.
A kid who has chronic, or frequent, ear infections might need a few other tests. They include an audiogram , which tests your hearing, and a tympanogram , a machine that checks whether your eardrum moves normally.
Poor And Unhygienic Procedures
The first and most common cause of infections is the use of unsterilized equipment and poor procedures i.e. unsterilized needle, gun and other equipment. There has been reports of cluster of infections caused by the Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria in Oregon, US. This bacterial infection have been attributed to the piercing kiosk using poor procedures that led to multiple people getting infected at the same time .
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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of An Inner Ear Infection
Ear infections can happen anywhere in your outer, middle or inner ear. The symptoms can be very different depending on where the problem is located. If the infection is in your inner ear then it can have a particularly dramatic effect on your senses of balance and hearing. Read on to learn more about inner ear infections and how they can affect you.
Diagnosis Of Outer Ear Infection
Your GP will usually be able to diagnose an outer ear infection by asking about your symptoms and examining your ear. They may also ask about your medical history to check if theres anything that could have caused your symptoms.
Your GP may look into your ear using an instrument called an otoscope to check for any signs of infection. They may ask you to move your ear or jaw to see if you feel pain.
If your symptoms are particularly severe or they dont get better after treatment or they come back, your GP may collect some discharge using a cotton swab. This will be sent to a laboratory for testing to find out whether the cause of your ear infection is bacterial or a fungus.
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Preventing Outer Ear Infection
The following tips can help to reduce your risk of having an outer ear infection.
- Try to keep the inside of your ears dry by keeping shampoo and water out of your ears when youre having a shower or a bath. Dry your ears with a dry towel or hair dryer afterwards.
- Dont use cotton buds or other objects to clean your ear canal.
- Use ear plugs and/or a tight-fitting swimming cap when you go swimming, to prevent water getting in your ears. Dont swim in polluted water.
- Consider using acidic drops before and after swimming if youre prone to outer ear infections. You can buy these from a pharmacy.
- If you have a skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis, make sure you keep it under control as much as possible.
- If you have a build-up of earwax, see a doctor or nurse to check if you need to get it removed. Dont try to do it yourself.
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Signs that a Shih Tzu is Itchy 1 Scratching at the area 2 Biting at the area 3 Licking the area 4 Rubbing the itchy body part against a rough surface such as carpeting 5 In some cases, shaking for example, if a dogs inner ear canals are itchy, a dog will shake their head More
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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.
What Does A Severe Ear Piercing Infection Look Like
Your infection is bad if you have these symptoms:
- Severe redness
- Abscess formation
If the skin around your piercing becomes red and tender and you have a fever greater than 100.4 degrees, you may be dealing with cellulitis, a common and potentially serious bacterial skin infection, and you’ll want to get yourself to a doc right away.
Of course, you can also have an allergy to the hardware in your ear and that can look like an infection. But unfortunately, it can be tough for non-doctors to figure out the difference, Dr. Mankarious says. “Professionals often think of allergies based on a history of allergies to metals as well as a lack of response to antibiotic treatment,” she says. So if you’re unsure, it’s best to see a doc.
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