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EAR INFECTION: When to Call the Doctor for that Earache

March 22, 2019 10:59 am | Published by

Written by Dr. Erik Richardson | Original content found at http://bit.ly/Ear_Infection

Do you or your child have ear pain? Do you get an earache often? Are you susceptible to Ear Infections or Otits Media? Watch this video to learn some health tips and the symptoms of ear infection for adults and kids. Also learn when it is important that you go to the doctor.

So when we talk about ear infections it’s important to know that there are several areas that can get infected: the outer ear canal, the inner ear or the most common that we are going to talk about today the Middle Ear. The official term for this is Otitis Media.

IN CHILDREN we tend to see symptoms such as

  • Ear pain, especially when lying down
  • Tugging or pulling at an ear
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Crying more than usual
  • Acting more irritable than usual
  • Difficulty hearing or responding to sounds
  • Loss of balance
  • Fever
  • Drainage of fluid from the ear
  • Headache
  • Loss of appetite

Common signs and symptoms in adults include:

  • Ear pain
  • Drainage of fluid from the ear
  • Diminished hearing

Ear infections tend to happen more after recent viral illnesses due to the swelling that happens in the middle ear creating fluid areas that are prime for infections to grow. So when should you seek care?

Over the age of 6 months it’s going to depend a lot on the severity of symptoms. If they are having significant pain or fevers that you can’t control with normal doses of ibuprofen or Tylenol then they should probably been seen.

If their symptoms are lasting over 48 hours without improvement then it’s probably a good idea to go in.

If you are an adult, it’s usually ok if you can control symptoms at home to give it a few days before seeking care. But if symptoms persist or get worse over 2-3 days then it’s probably time to have somebody take a look at it. All of these symptoms are ones that your typical doctor’s office or quick care can usually handle. So save yourself time and money and avoid the ER if at all possible. If you are unsure about where is appropriate to go the call your doctor’s office. They usually have somebody on call that can help direct you to where is most appropriate.

It’s important to remember that most ear infections start out being viral and can be cleared on their own. Most of the time your body is going do what it does best and fight it off on its own.


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This post was written by Saltzer Health