Introduction - Ear infection (Otitis Media) is a common condition in children, which usually cause pain in the ear, and sometimes cause fever and hearing problems. Ear infections are less common in adults than children.
Ear infections quite often occur in children after they get a cold. The secretions of the ears accumulate in the middle part of the ear. This fluid can then be infected and while expanding, it press the eardrum, making it bulge.
In part of the children affected, the fluid can remain in the ear for weeks to months after the pain and infection have gone. This fluid accumulation can cause a temporary hearing loss, which is usually mild. This condition in young infants can sometimes lead to problems with the development of language and speech, especially if the hearing loss lasts for a long time.
Symptoms - In infants and young children, the symptoms might include:
• Pulling of the ear
• Being or less active than usual
• Low appetite than usual
• Vomiting or Diarrhea
In older children, the symptoms often include earache and temporary hearing loss. They tend less to develop fever.
How do I know if my child has ear infection? – If the symptoms mentioned above resembles the symptoms of your child, see a doctor. After examining your child, the doctor should be able to tell if the child has an ear infection.
First aid treatment – Since ear infections symptoms usually get worse at night, it is important to know what to do until the morning arrives. The child should be given a suitable pain killer, such as Acetaminophen (brand name in Israel: Acamoli) or Ibuprofen (sample brands in Israel: Nurofen, Advil) to reduce pain and restlessness. Please note – Aspirin should never be given to a child under 18. Aspirin in children can lead to a dangerous condition called Ray Syndrome.
In young kids, is usually not recommended to give cold medicines and coughing medicines for cold symptoms and/or ear infection. These drugs can lead to side effects in young children and their benefit is marginal.
Treatment - Ear infections can be treated with antibiotics. These drugs kill the bacteria that cause some of the symptoms of ear infections. However, it shouldn't be prescribed automatically. This is because a major part of ear infections are caused by viruses and not bacteria - and antibiotics do not kill viruses. In addition, many children get over ear bacterial ear infections without antibiotics.
spontaneously Antibiotics are usually being prescribed to treat ear infections in infants under the age of two. For children over the age of two, doctors sometimes delay antibiotics treatment for a few days, in order to see if the child is improving