Children sometimes tug their ears when they’re tired, but irritability and ear tugging can indicate an infection. Sometimes referred to as otitis media, an Ear Infection In Bethlehem is a common problem in kids under the age of three. Here, parents can learn the signs and symptoms of an ear infection.
Bacteria and viruses can cause ear infections. Most begin while a child is already sick, but some infections come without a concurrent illness. Acute infections are short and painful, and they can cause short-term hearing loss. Chronic infections involve frequent or consistent swelling or an infection behind the child’s eardrum. These infections can cause permanent damage to the child’s ears.
Signs of an Ear Infection
As mentioned previously, certain signs can indicate the presence of an Ear Infection In Bethlehem. If a parent notices any of these symptoms, they can visit to schedule an appointment.
- Tugging or pulling the ears
- A foul-smelling discharge from the affected ear
- Irritability or crankiness
- A fever above 100 degrees
- Respiratory infection
Treating the Condition
While antibiotics are frequently used, they’re not always necessary. Sometimes, alternate treatment methods must be used. If a child’s frequent ear infections are affecting his/her quality of life, the doctor may recommend the use of ear tubes, which allow the ears to drain while decreasing the chance of further infection.
Ear Tube Insertion
When a child has ear tubes inserted, it is typically done after general anesthesia administered via a face mask. The doctor clears the ears of debris and inserts the tubes through small incisions in the eardrums. The entire procedure takes less than 15 minutes in most cases, and patients can take OTC pain relievers afterward. There’s almost no downtime, and children can return to school the next day. No surgery is needed to remove the tubes, which typically come out on their own within two years of insertion. While most ear infections don’t need such drastic treatment, children with chronic issues can often benefit from ear tube surgery. Consult a local ear, nose and throat doctor with questions and concerns, or to schedule an appointment.
Follow us on Facebook!