Ear Pain, Decreased Hearing or Poping – It May Be an Ear infection
There are two main types of ear infections – Outer ear infections (swimmer’s ear) and Inner ear ( otitis media) . Ear infections can cause redness, soreness, and inflammation of the middle or external ear canal. Ear infection may be caused by allergies or, most commonly, by infection. Often it occurs as a complication of the common cold or allergies.
People may be at higher risk for ear infections if they:
- Are around people who smoke.
- Have had previous ear infections.
- Have a family history of ear infections.
- Attend day care (because they are exposed to more germs and viruses).
- Have frequent colds or other infections.
- Are bottle-fed rather than breast-fed (only a factor in first few months).
- Take a bottle to bed.
- Use a pacifier.
- Have nasal speech (caused by large adenoids that block the eustachian tube).
- Have allergies with nasal congestion
Treatments for ear infection may include:
- Medicines to help with pain.
- Medicines to kill germs (antibiotics ), if the otitis media may be caused by bacteria.
Prevention of ear infections:
- Vaccinate your child with a pneumococcal conjugate vaccine to protect against several types of pneumococcal bacteria. This type of bacteria is the most common cause of ear infections.
- Practice routine hand washing and avoid sharing food and drinks, especially if your child is exposed to large groups of kids in day care or school settings.
- Avoid second-hand smoke.
- Breastfeed your baby exclusively for the first 6 months and continue breastfeeding for at least 1 year. Place your baby at an angle while feeding.
- Common allergy and cold medicines do not protect against ear infections.
Vitality Urgent and Primary Care has the capabilities to test, diagnose, and treat an ear related conditions in Northwest Suburbs (Illinois) and Great Chicago Metropolitan area. We provide the essential urgent care needed for adults or children in the comfort and convenience of your own home.