Recurrent in children, this inflammation of the ear can also occur in adults. Discover the different types of ear infections as well as the associated symptoms and causes. Also follow our advice to relieve the pain of ear infection when it prevents you from sleeping. Fight earache naturally with our remedies.
What is otitis?
Otitis is a generic term that designates all inflammatory damage to the ear (external, middle or internal). Inflammation can also be acute or chronic. In any case, the doctors will speak of otitis.
On the other hand, ear infections are common inflammations. It is even the second most observed infectious disease, after nasopharyngitis. Otitis is properly treated.
Acute otitis media
This inflammation of the ear canal is characterized by pain in one ear accompanied by a decrease in hearing (hypoacusis). Fever may also be observed in the subject.
In infants, certain signs should alert: refusal of the bottle, fever, vomiting, diarrhea, unexplained crying, agitation, sleep disturbances, etc.
In the presence of these symptoms, it is advisable to consult your general practitioner who will carry out the examination of the eardrums. The professional can also determine the type of otitis media:
- congestive otitis: the membranes of the eardrum are pink or red, and the congestive eardrum is particularly painful;
- exudative otitis: the eardrum is thick, opaque, congestive or greyish;
- suppurative otitis: the eardrum is bulging and the pain is permanent, preventing sleep;
- acute otitis with flowing ear (othorée): the inflammation is then perforated. Pus drains into the external auditory canal.
This type of inflammation causes pain, itching and discharge from the ear. When the ear is pulled, the pain is accentuated.
This otitis is common in children between 1 and 8 years old. Not painful, it can however lead to hearing loss if it is not treated by an ENT doctor.
Most viral ear infections are actually medium acute inflammations. This type of otitis is characterized by sharp pain in the ear. In question, the deposit of liquid on the eardrum.
On the other hand, untreated viral otitis can cause partial loss of hearing.
Acute otitis media
This inflammation is caused by an infection. It usually occurs during nasopharyngitis.
External otitis is caused by a fungus or bacteria. There are generally two main causes: the ear canal is in repeated contact with an object, when cleaning the ears for example, or there is water in the canal (after a bath).
This ear infection is caused by the accumulation of fluid at the back of the eardrum. More or less abundant and thick, it drowns the ossicles and blocks the Eustachian tube.
As the name suggests, this inflammation is caused by a virus. Most often, it occurs following the flu.
How to relieve an otitis?
As soon as you feel the first pains of an otitis, hydrate yourself sufficiently. Drink mineral water preferably, and complete with soup, vegetable broth, soup, fruit juice…
On the other hand, dehydration can occur quickly in infants and young children. Therefore, drink a sachet of oral rehydration solution, especially if the ear infection is accompanied by diarrhea.
Adopt the right position for sleeping
It is not easy to close your eye when you suffer from ear inflammation. However, there is a position that alleviates the pain. Instead, sleep semi-recumbent. You will have less pain than lying down.
To achieve the correct position, use a recliner or wedge cushions into your bed. If your baby has an ear infection, also elevate his head to help him sleep. Place a towel under his mattress or use the recliner. And never place a pillow or towel directly in the child’s bed. He would risk choking.
What you should not do
To avoid having too much pain during the night, you must absolutely avoid:
- to touch your affected ear;
- expose yourself to cigarette smoke. In general, passive smoking promotes the appearance of ENT infections such as otitis;
- expose yourself to drafts;
- to put water in the ear;
- overheating your bedroom;
- to blow your nose too forcefully.
Disinfect the nasal cavities
To disinfect the nasal cavities, use physiological saline or sea water. In the event of otitis, nasal drops are not essential. Indeed, the inflammation is linked to a nasopharyngeal attack.
Relieve pain with painkillers
In case of pain and fever, it is strongly recommended to use painkillers with paracetamol.
There are homeopathic treatments to relieve the pain of an ear infection. Generally, they are used as an adjunct to antibiotic treatment.
Most often, homeopathy is delivered to children with allergies and respiratory infections.
To relieve your child, give him Belladonna 9CH, Ferrum phosphoricum 9CH and Capsicum annum 9CH. Alternate three pellets of each every hour if your child suffers from congested ears, pain or if a fever suddenly occurs.