Ear infection sounds terrifying, right? Especially when it happens to kids. And it also has the potential to cause great discomfort to children and tension to the parents. So what exactly is an ear infection? It is medically called Acute Otitis media and is an infection that affects the middle ear in the air-filled space behind the eardrum and children are prone to it. Have you ever wondered what causes this and what aggravates this?
It generally occurs when bacteria or viruses accumulate in the middle ear- the space exactly behind the eardrum. Children generally get it because their bodies are still in a developing stage and immunity too. Infections have a high chance of occurring after sore throats because the passages of the nose, ears, and eyes are all connected. The acute pain is caused due to a fluid which is generated by the ear for its own protection from the bacteria or viruses.
Also Read: Indian Home Remedies For Cough For Kids
We don’t have to worry that much in this case because it generally occurs when a child can speak. In most cases, it is expected that the child himself or herself will be able to tell you about the problem. But some peculiar signs of your child suffering from an ear infection need more attention:
- He might have trouble sleeping.
- He might pull his ears as it would give temporary relief from the pain. As stated earlier, it also happens after fever or throat infection, so in that case, you have to be careful and observant.
- There could also be fluid draining from your child’s ears.
- He or she might also have trouble balancing because the fluid in the ear canal helps in balancing.
- Hearing issues or muffled hearing.
Also Read: Common Ear Problems in Children
Some effective home remedies for baby ear infection—
Hot and cold pads:
People generally use heating pads and damp clothes for different types of body pains, be it knee or back pain and the same can be used for ear pain too. This is totally safe for children. Place the warm packs and cold packs alternatively on your child’s ear for 10 minutes and if he or she is not comfortable with both cold and hot packs, you can use either one of those.
You should also improve the sinus drainage of your kid at the time of an ear infection. You can do this by elevating the mattress so that your child’s head is elevated.
Neck exercises are especially beneficial for getting relief from the acute earaches that are caused by the pressure in the ear canal. You can help your child in doing these exercises. Tell him to stretch his shoulders as high as his ears and maintain that position for a while.
Just like garlic, ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties. You can put ginger juice or ginger oil around the ear, but remember not to put it directly into the ear.
Use of olive oil:
Another solid home remedy is to use of olive oil. It is an age-old technique of using warm drops of olive oil for ear infection. It can soothe the ear pain but make sure the olive oil is not warmer than the body temperature as it can then harm the ear canal.
You can also use hydrogen peroxide solution, it has also been an age-old remedy. Apply a few drops then let your child lay for a while. After a few minutes when you let the solution drain, it will treat infections effectively.
Sometimes earaches are caused by ear wax. If you put a few drops of mustard oil (sarso tel) and let it get absorbed for 2 to 3 hours, it would then be very easy to extract ear wax using an earbud, and it will give instant relief.
Another effective way to enhance the properties of warm oil is to mix crushed garlic in it. Garlic has both antibiotic and pain-relieving properties which can treat your child’s infection as well as the pain and help him have a sound sleep.
Sometimes it takes time to show results with these remedies, it can be troubling for your child so you can let him watch his favorite cartoons or let him play with his favorite toys as it will surely help him to take his mind off the pain.
Last but not least, you should also keep in mind some preventions so that you don’t unintentionally aggravate the problem. In no circumstances, you should allow your child in the swimming pool without swimming caps because if the water enters the ear canal, it could deteriorate the situation and can cause a fungal infection.
It is always good to consult a doctor as soon as these symptoms show up because a doctor can easily help you determine at which stage your child’s ear infection is and how severe it is.