Ear infections are a common problem, especially for children. Fortunately, an ear, nose, and throat specialist knows just what to do to clear up an ear infection.
What You Need To Know About Ear Infections
Ear infections happen because bacteria, fluid, and other substances plug up the inner ear. They can happen when you or your child has a virus or bacterial infection. Bacteria travels into the inner ear, causing pressure and pain. The pressure and pain can be severe, especially for children. A child’s ear canals are much smaller than those of an adult, so symptoms can be more severe.
There are some important preventive steps to take to help prevent ear infections for yourself or for your child. Remember to:
- Wash hands frequently, to minimize bacterial transfer
- Make sure you and your child are vaccinated against influenza
- Avoid exposure to cigarette smoke
- Avoid exposure to people or children who are ill
The signs and symptoms of an ear infection in children include:
- Fussiness and frequent crying
- Tugging or pulling at their ear
- Draining fluid out of the ears
- Having trouble hearing sounds and responding
- Having a fever and difficulty sleeping
- Experiencing problems with balance
You might have an ear infection if you:
- Experience pain and pressure in your ears
- Notice fluid draining out of your ears
- Have a fever and don’t feel well
- Are having problems with balance
You can try a few simple home remedies to get relief from a ear infection. You can try:
- Taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory and pain medication
- Placing a warm, moist towel on your ears
- Resting and avoiding strenuous activity
Typically, ear infections should be treated by an ENT specialist. The ENT specialist may recommend an antibiotic regimen to be taken for 7 to 10 days, along with prescription strength eardrops.
If your child is experiencing chronic ear infections, the ENT specialist may recommend a surgical procedure to place a small tube in your child’s eardrum to improve airflow and help the ear drain fluid more efficiently.
Want To Know More?
To find out more about the causes, signs, symptoms, and treatment of ear infections, talk with your ear, nose, and throat doctor today.