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What to do when your child has an ear infection

When your child has an ear infection it is very important to know exactly what to do because ears are precious and have several important functions.

An ear infection can occur in different parts of the ear.

Infections in the external ear – the part that we can see from the outside – are called otitis externa.

Infections of the middle ear – the part immediately behind the ear drum is called otitis media.

Infections of the middle ear are extremely painful when they begin because of the small space in which the pus accumulates. However as the infection becomes more severe – at some point – the pain is likely to reduce because the ear drum bursts because of the pressure and the pus comes out. Even though the pain reduces at this point – the disease becomes more severe because now the inner delicate structures of the ear are out in the open. Also there is scope for other germs to enter the ear at this point because of the absence of the ear drum. However because the pain subsides at this point it is common to delay taking the child to the doctor or even completely ignore the disease – which can be dangerous.

Read What every parent should know about earache

It is extremely important therefore to be extremely vigilant if your child has an ear infection so that the infection does not become severe.

One of the most important things to keep in mind during an ear infection is that the child should definitely not be allowed to swim. This is because when a child is under water – the pressure of the water can push the infection deeper into the ear.

Even if the water is not under pressure it can still cause a lot of problems because once water enters the ear it has the potential to carry infection with it. It is therefore important to be very careful not to allow water to enter the ear while washing your child’s hair. Make sure you block the ear with cotton and cover the ear with plastic before you wash your child’s hair. Also tilt the head to the opposite side while pouring water.

Take your child to the ENT specialist as soon as the signs of ear infection arise.

Delaying treatment makes it more difficult to cure the infection.

Remember these to ensure a speedy recovery.

Watch What to do when an insect goes into a child’s ear

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