If you have a child that has suffered from an ear infection, you know all too well just how much an ear infection could really ruin a night for you. In fact, even as adults, people can get earaches if their ears are not properly cared for. For the most part, children are the ones who have to deal with earaches and there are a lot of reasons why. Let’s talk about how you can avoid these painful (and often sleepless) nights, both for your children and you.
One of the most common ways children can first acquire an ear infection is from getting sick. As if coughing and runny noses were not miserable enough, the inner ears can become very sensitive and painful. When your child gets sick, the ear canals can build up with fluid, and therein is where the problem begins. Although it is impossible to keep your children from getting sick, there are some preventative solutions to earaches.
Preventative Measures for Ear Infections
First, you need to know the symptoms of an ear infection. One surefire way you can tell is when your child has sudden outbursts of crying while being sick. This is because the child is in pain. You will also typically see the child clutching the side of their head because he or she is trying to alleviate the pain in their ear. Depending on the age of the child, your son or daughter may complain of headaches. So anytime you see the child grabbing at their ears, it’s time to bring them to a doctor.
There are many ways to avoid ear infections, but studies have shown that babies who breastfeed tend to have fewer earaches. Breast milk has valuable antibodies that ward off infections. So if you can, try and breastfeed your infant. Another good piece of advice is to keep your child away from crowded daycare centers. Whenever you have a bunch of kids together in a school or daycare, it is inevitable that illnesses spread like wildfire. Of course, both of these may not be a good fit for your circumstances, but these are suggestions that can help you to prevent your child from getting sick.
Both in children and adults, keeping your ears clean will also help to prevent infections. Using soft cotton (not inside the ear but all around the inner ear) can help to clean it, but always remember to dry the ears very well after showering, bathing or swimming. Water buildup can lead to an ear infection. Contrary to popular belief, it is not suggested that you should ever put Q-Tips inside the ear canal, as it can damage a person’s eardrum.
Nasal spray can help with an ear infection, but should not be used daily because it can become addictive. During a cold, the nasal spray is a good option because it flushes away irritants.
The best way to prevent ear infections is to keep up with visits to the doctor or pediatrician and have the ears checked every six months. Physicians are trained to spot warning signs of an ear infection and can possibly nip it in the bud before it worsens.
- Believe it or not, one thing that can help to alleviate some pressure and pain of an earache is chewing gum. The motion of gum chewing helps to loosen the muscles around the infected area. It also releases the pressure around the Eustachian Tubes. Doing this will keep your equilibrium feeling level!
- Another cool tip is to pick up some Garlic and Mullein Oil at a Natural Living Store. Both of these possess antibodies that can help to kill the infection. It also lessens the pain in the process.