Ear infections often occur alongside another type of infection. If your child is suffering from an earache, you want to offer solutions to ease her pain. Whether you’re looking for home remedies or a permanent solution, you’re sure to find something that works for her. Let her take it easy for a few days, and the pain should go away.
Most doctors will suggest taking a “wait and see” approach when it comes to an earache. You can treat this at home. Try giving your child ibuprofen or acetaminophen to see if this helps, particularly if he has a fever. Follow your doctor’s instructions regarding proper dosage for your child’s weight. In most cases, this will significantly reduce pain. You may also be able to ease the pain with a hot or cold compress. To create a warm compress, use a heating pad or wet a towel and place it in the microwave for about 20 seconds, then place on the ear. For a cold compress, wrap an ice pack in a towel and let him lie with his ear on the ice.
If the pain seems persistent, take your child in to see her doctor. The doctor may prescribe prescription ear drops, which can help ease the pain. Additionally, the doctor may discover that the ear infection is a result of bacteria and will prescribe antibiotics to get rid of the illness.
If your child frequently gets ear infections, it may be time to take more drastic measures. Through a minor surgical procedure, your child’s doctor can place small tubes in the ear drums that reduce his chances of getting more infections.
Things to Avoid
If the ears are draining wax or pus, you may be tempted to cover the hole with a cotton ball or ear plugs. However, this traps the fluid inside, which can make the pain even worse.
The Seattle Children’s Hospital recommends calling your doctor if the pain does not improve within two hours of taking ibuprofen, if there’s swelling behind or around the ears or if your child has a stiff neck. These could be signs of a more serious problem, and you should not attempt to give relief at home.