Acute Otitis Media, or more commonly known as a Middle Ear Infection, is extremely common in infants and small children. The following is some basic information about why our children are more susceptible to this problem and what can be done to help prevent further occurrences of them.
Why does your child get Inner Ear Infections?
The ear is made up of three different parts. The outer ear, the middle ear, and the inner ear. The middle ear has a tube attached, the Eustachian tube, which helps drain fluid from the middle ear into the mouth. The reason children are more prone to ear infections is because this tube is flatter than an adults which means it cannot drain this fluid as efficiently as you and I.
What Symptoms Should you Look For:
Typically the primary symptoms are soreness, pain and discomfort in the area surrounding the ear as well as: fever, fluid draining, trouble sleeping, loss of appetite and grumpy behavior.
Some signs that parents should be aware of to indicate that their children have fluid accumulating in their middle ear includes:
- Popping or ringing in the ear.
- Pressure buildup. Young children unable to communicate this will oftentimes rub their ears trying to relieve the uncomfortable feeling.
- Difficulty hearing.
- Balance problems, incoordination and dizziness.
What should you do?
When your child is rubbing their ear or experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above there is a natural reaction of panic and overthinking the problem. Should you run to your pediatrician and demand antibiotics? According to a 2017 article by Harvard Medical School: probably not, roughly 80% of children get better without the use of antibiotics. Typically antibiotics are prescribed if the symptoms do not start to dissipate after 2-3 days.
There are numerous natural remedies that can help relieve these symptoms help get this build up fluid drained:
- Warm of Cold compress applied directly to the ear or just behind the ear
- Lavender Essential oil (I personally use Doterra for many of my essential oils) doterra.com/drsean. Applying a small drop of oil behind the childs ear helps relieve some of the symptoms.
- Pediatric Ear Drops
- Chiropractic Adjustments
How can a Chiropractic Adjustment Help?
I may be slightly biased here, but I believe this is the most gentle and effective way to help with your child’s acute ear infection. Without getting to technical we must understand the relationship of your child’s spine and how it can affect their ear. The relationship of your child’s upper cervical spine and ear canal are extremely important in understanding how this can be an effective treatment.
The practitioners pinky finger above is applied to the child’s first cervical vertebra. Look at the proximity of the finger and the child’s ear. By applying gentle pressure to this spinal segment an adjustment is performed which adds motion to the spine and affecting the surrounding structures, one of them being the Eustachian tube, allowing for drainage of the middle ear to occur.
Chiropractic care is extremely safe and beneficial to children. To learn more sign up for your free consultation.