Tag Archives: ear infection children

How to take care of your child’s EAR

Q.How to clean EAR?

Ans. No active cleaning is required as there are glands in the ear which cleans it naturally. No object should be inserted inside the ear canal, only the outer part of ear to be cleaned. No oil or any other liquid to be instilled; give medication ear drops only after consultation with doctor.

Q.What are common causes of pain in the ear in children?

Ans. Common causes are

  • Impacted wax (Cerumen)
  • Infection in ear canal
  • Infection in ear drum or middle ear
  • Trauma due to insertion of foreign objects like caps of pen, hair pin etc.

Ear pain should not be ignored and opinion of child specialist or ENT specialist should be taken.

Q.How to prevent ear infections?

Ans:Common measures to prevent ear infections are

  • Avoid Trauma: Educate children about not to insert anything in the ear
  • Do not let dirty water enter ear canal
  • Avoid feeding with bottle in lying down position
  • Do not Slap the child as it can damage the ear drum
  • Early diagnosis and treatment helps the spread of infection

Q.When to visit doctor?

Ans:ENT specialist opinion should be taken if

  • Persistent pain in ear
  • Ear discharge
  • Suspicion of hearing loss
  • Delayed speech
  • Difficulty in understanding of spoken language by child
  • Whenever in doubt, its better to consult rather than feel sorry later

Q.How long can a child listen to loud music safely?

Ans:Hearing hazard depends upon both level of noise and duration of exposure. It is best to avoid such situations and use well fitted ear plugs especially for babies.

Q.I enjoy listening to loud music through ear/headphones. Will it harm my hearing ability?

Ans:The risk of hearing loss increases as sound is played at high intensity (volume) and for long durations. It has been shown that listening through earphones at 95% of maximum sound volume for 5 minutes (with most devices) continuously will damage hearing. To protect hearing, volume should be minimized and breaks should be taken while listening through ear/headphones

Q.Is there any other function which ear has besides hearing?

Ans:Yes. Balancing and for maintaining posture. Inner ear is responsible for it.


Dr Rahul Varma

How to manage ear infection in children?

More than half if not three quarters of ear infections in children are caused by viral germs which get better simply with tincture of time.

Bacteria-causing ear infections do need treatment with an antibiotic but since these are in the minority as a cause, the American Academy of Pediatrics now suggests not treating ear infections in children over 6 months of age automatically with an antibiotic but instead treating the pain for the first day or two with the hope that the virus causing the infection will be defeated by the child’s own natural immune system and if the ear pain and discomfort persists after 48 hours despite good pain control, then antibiotics might be considered.

This delay in treating ear infections with antibiotics is to avoid overuse of antibiotics which can make the bacterial germs more resistant to common antibiotics and thus more difficult to treat.

Just because we may not prescribe antibiotics immediately does not mean we will not treat the pain with ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Of course the best way to deal with an ear infection is not to let one happen, so what can we do to prevent them? The best way to do this is to teach your children good handwashing to prevent the spread of germs from one person to another.

In addition, breastfeeding your baby for at least the first six months, and making sure their immunizations are up to date decreases the risk of ear infections occurring and keeping children away from environmental tobacco smoke will make it easier for viruses to get out of the nose so they don’t move up into the ear canal and cause an infection.

Hopefully tips like this will give you more than an earful of information when it comes to getting a better understanding of your child’s ear infection.



Dr Rahul Varma