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How to Avoid Ear Infections

Ear Check-UpWhat Are Ear Infections?

An ear infection is any type of infection that takes place within the structure of the ear. There are three major types of ear infection:

Inner Ear

An inner ear infection causes intense pain, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. It is often difficult to determine whether these symptoms correspond to a true infection or a case of inflammation from other sources, so it’s important to get an accurate diagnosis as soon as possible.

Middle Ear

The middle ear is the area right behind the eardrum. This region is susceptible to a build-up of fluid, which can cause the eardrum itself to bulge. Fluid drainage tends to occur with a middle ear infection, but it does not usually resolve on its own. It may impair hearing or cause a fever.

Outer Ear

From the eardrum to the outside of your head stands the outer ear. It is prone to infection if it is irritated or exposed to environmental hazards. This kind of infection usually starts as a rash that progresses to become painful, tender, swollen, and red in the affected area.

Who Gets Ear Infections?

You can get an ear infection at any age.

Although ear infections are somewhat more common in children than in adults, it partially to do with the fact that children are more likely to engage in behaviors that may make them vulnerable to ear infections – for example, putting objects or unclean fingers in their ears.

Elders and those with compromised immune systems should also be alert to the threat of an ear infection. If your body may have difficulty fighting an infection, it is a good idea to seek out medical attention right away. An ear infection can spread and cause significant danger.

Childhood ear infections tend to be minor and pass quickly. On the other hand, ear infections experienced by adults may be a sign of a serious systemic issue within the ear that requires help.

How to Avoid Ear Infections

Many ear infections arise as a result of improper cleaning of the ear, which can introduce bacteria into it. You should be cautious to clean only the outside of the ear with a damp cloth. Do not insert cotton swabs into the ear canal, since this can cause damage or lead to infection. You can use a syringe to safely irrigate your ears, especially if you suffer from earwax build-up.

How to Treat Ear Infections

Ear infections should only be treated by a doctor. The nature of the infection must be evaluated by a professional before the right steps can be taken. In many cases, antibiotic ear-drops must be used for a period of time to mitigate infection.

In some cases, it may be necessary to drain fluid from the ear to reduce pain and facilitate the body’s natural infection-fighting processes. No matter the case, seeing a doctor is the first step toward resolving the problem in a safe and lasting way. Contact Lakeside Allergy ENT to learn more.

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