An ear infection is a very painful condition that develops very quickly. If we tend to suffer several or last for too long, it has surely become a chronic condition. There may be various reasons to have an ear infection. It is a common problem that almost all of us have suffered throughout our lives. There are several remedies that can help us.
The remedies to overcome an ear infection can come in handy. However, before following these recommendations, if we have an ear infection we should see a doctor since the prescription of antibiotics is practically mandatory. To older, we can follow the advice that we expose below.
In the following article, you will learn how you can treat ear infections. There are some useful remedies that can help cope better with ear infections. Discover some.
Ear infections: what we should know
It should be borne in mind that ear infections are more serious when they involve internal parts and less dangerous if they are related to external areas. In addition, if otitis does not heal properly it can lead to a loss (partial or total) of hearing, vertigo and discomfort.
They are classified according to where the affected area is located:
- Otitis externa: It is characterized by fluid flow, pain, redness, temporary hearing loss. It is caused by bacteria mostly and to a lesser extent by viruses or fungi.
- The Otitis: media is very common in children and symptoms are fever, pain, irritability, partial loss of hearing ability and lack of appetite. It occurs when the intermediate ear space is plugged with fluids and mucus.
- Internal otitis: can cause nausea, dizziness, vertigo, vomiting, and loss of balance. It appears when the innermost part of the ear is inflamed, it is also known as labyrinthitis. It is uncommon but its symptoms are intense.
How to Treat Ear Infections
Folk remedies for ear infections
The remedies that we present to you are based on popular knowledge or advice derived from natural therapies. It is advised that they are supervised by health professionals to avoid risks. The options would be:
Remedies with plants and essential oils
- Crush a handful of basil leaves and another handful of plantain leaves. Heat everything until it is warm and place as a poultice on the affected ear.
- Boil two tablespoons of wormwood in a liter of water for 10 minutes. Let cool and bring the ear to the container so that the steam enters.
- Macerate ten chamomile flowers with four tablespoons of olive oil for 2 days. Apply with cotton. It is also good for pain due to excessive earwax production.
- Heat two tablespoons of almond oil and let it reduce to room temperature. Apply two drops in the ear canal and cover with a cotton pad to protect.
- Boil a handful of oregano leaves and half a cup of water, for three minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Strain and pour into a dropper. Apply three drops to the sore ear (if the eardrum is not perforated).
Home remedies with food from your pantry
- Squeeze a lemon and soak a cotton ball in the juice. Gently place in the entrance of the ear (without introducing too much) for 10 minutes before sleeping. This remedy is good when pain is caused by an accumulation of wax.
- Heat two handfuls of rice and place in a cloth bag or wrap in a cloth. Place on the pillow and rest your ear on it.
- Roast a potato in the fire and wrap in a cloth. Apply as a compress over the ear as hot as possible.
- Boil half a cup of water with a handful of coarse salt. Wet a cloth and apply over the ear.
- Grate a radish and heat it. Wrap in a thin cloth canvas and place over the ear, leave until it cools.
- Cut an onion into slices and mash it. Place on canvas and heat in the microwave. Apply as a compress on the sore ear.
- Heat a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil for a few minutes, add a clove of crushed garlic. Let stand until warm and soak a cotton ball, which you will introduce into the ear hole.
- Crush a handful of chard leaves and extract the juice. Pour with a dropper, about four drops in the ear.
If you are not finding these home remedies working, you should go for the following medications:
1. Use warm compresses
The pain in an ear infection can be unbearable. Despite lying on one side or another, the pain persists and there is no way we can calm it down. Therefore, warm compresses can help us. We can buy them at any pharmacy or use a damp cloth if we prefer.
- What we are going to do is immerse it in warm water.
- Once we remove the cloth or the compress, we drain it very well and apply it on the ear that is affected.
- If we wait a few minutes we will notice some pain relief, although to improve this we see the following recommendation.
2. Take pain relievers
Even if we want to avoid it, analgesics are going to be very necessary to be able to pass the ear infection in the best possible way. Some pain relievers that we can acquire without having to go to the doctor are the following and can greatly help the pain:
- Paracetamol: Its side effects are minimal and it is highly recommended for any type of pain, such as headache, toothache and, in this case, ear. The problem with this medicine is that it can affect the liver and we have to know that it is not an anti-inflammatory drug, only an analgesic. The maximum recommended dose per day is 3 grams separated into at least 3 doses.
- Ibuprofen: It is more effective in pain that has to do with injuries or muscles. However, it has many more side effects than paracetamol and can aggravate stomach ulcers if we have them. If we consume it together with food we will reduce its effects at the digestive level. Unlike paracetamol, ibuprofen does have anti-inflammatory properties.
It is appropriate to ask our specialist to prescribe some pain reliever. In this way, knowing our background and medical history, we will prescribe one or the other depending on what we need.
3. Antibiotics will be necessary
Although pain killers can be acquired by us, the same should not happen with antibiotics. These types of drugs are too strong and are intended to combat, in this case, ear infection. We can take an analgesic along with an antibiotic if the doctor confirms it. Despite this, we have to pay close attention to what he tells us regarding how to take the antibiotic he prescribes.
If we believe that we are already well and stop its intake, the ear infection may appear again. The antibiotic allows dealing with the ear infection that, otherwise, could be almost impossible. In addition, the type of drug that we should take and its duration will depend on the severity of the infection (for example, if we have acute otitis). That is why, and to avoid resistance and complications, we must comply with the treatment time and take them properly as instructed by the specialist.
Recommendations to avoid pain and ear infections
- Avoid using cotton buds to clean your ears.
- Prevent throat infections.
- Strengthen the immune system through healthy eating.
- Avoid sharing headphones.
- Do not dive into swimming pools with a lot of chlorine.
- Do not introduce foreign objects into the ears.
- Sleep on your side to facilitate drainage.
The use of diabolos
In some cases of ear infection, it may be necessary to make use of diabolos or ventilation tubes. A diabolo is a very small tube that is placed where the eardrum is to ventilate the ear and prevent the accumulation of fluid. This allows for avoiding ear infections if they are very recurrent.
Sometimes, the diabolo is left for a few months or, in some cases, it is allowed to detach itself. Diabolos usually work very well in ear infections that are chronic. However, its use will depend on what the doctor considers.
Do you usually suffer from recurrent ear infections?
To overcome an ear infection it is essential to follow the doctor’s recommendations and take the drugs in the way they have been prescribed. In addition to all this, rest is usually recommended and avoiding abrupt changes in atmospheric pressure (thus, it is better not to travel by plane if possible while we have otitis). With all this, we can recover successfully from an ear infection.