Earache in Children
Earaches are common particularly in young children. It can be worrying, but is not usually a sign of anything serious. Children between the ages of six months and two years old are more prone to ear infections than older children and adults because of their undeveloped immune system and the size and shape of their eustachian tube (tube connecting the nose and the ear).In this blog, we have tried to help you understand better what causes ear aches, how to check if your child has an ear ache, and how not to preventsuch episodes.
What causes Ear Aches?
The most common causes of earaches include:
- Earwax accumulation
- Foreign object in the ear
- Ear Infectionsoftenfollowan episode of cold
- Adenoid hypertrophy
- Change in air pressure when flying on a plane
- Trauma to ear (Use of cotton buds, injury)
- Teething (in infants)
- Swimmer’s ear
How to identify Ear Aches in babies and young children?
It is difficult to find among babies and young children, but with the following checklist it becomes easier to guess if they are having ear aches:
- Rubbing or pulling their ear.
- Difficulty sleeping or lying down.
- Have high fever with temperature over 38°C.
- Being irritable or fussy.
- Keep losing their balance.
- Not eating much food.
- Not responding to certain sounds.
- Pus draining out of the ear.
How to prevent Ear infections?
- Breastfeed your baby for 6-12 months if possible.
- Children should be held upright while drinking a bottle. When they are old enough to hold their own bottle well, they should be taught to drink from a regular cup (not a “sippy cup”) and no longer given a bottle.
- Protect your baby from exposure to second-hand smoke, which can make ear infections more severe and more frequent.
- Do not clean ears with cotton swabs or sharp objects.
- Avoid water from entering the ears.
- Make sure kids get in the habit of washing their hands, especially after playing around other kids.
- Ask the doctor if earplugs and special ear drops are a good idea for a child who swims a lot.
- Make sure your child’s immunizations are up-to-date, including flu shots (for 6 months and older) and pneumococcal vaccines.
When should you consult an ENT Specialist?
Ear aches often improve within a span of three to four days. However, it is highly recommended to consult an ENT Specialist if:
- Child is having the ear ache for more than four days or the pain is repetitive.
- Child also has other symptoms such as high temperature (fever), sore throat, hearing loss, discharge of blood or pus from the ears.
- Foreign body in the ear.
If your child is having ear ache with swelling around the ear or dizziness, don’t think twice and straightaway get in touch with the experts at Aahan ENT Clinic to schedule an appointment with a specialist. The experts here will analyse your current situation. They will talk to you in great detail and walk you through a suitable procedure and diagnosis to help you find relief at the earliest.