Ear Infections in Children

What You Need to Know About Ear Infections

Does your child complain of earaches? It could be ear infections.

An ear infection happens when fluid gets caught in the middle ear. It is often accompanied by another illness such as the common cold, flu, allergies, or other upper respiratory infections. Ear infections most often afflict children, but adults can also suffer from them.


What are the symptoms?

  • A piercing, sudden earache, or
  • A dull, continuous earache
  • A full feeling in the ear
  • Drainage from the ear
  • Impaired hearing
  • Nausea
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Fever

Young children may also tug at their ear, cry when laid down at night, and lack appetite.

innerimageblog.jpegMost ear infections heal on their own. However, be sure to call your doctor if you suspect your young child may have an ear infection, if your child has a fever of 100.4 degrees or above, or if you notice impaired hearing. Get your child to a doctor right away if the child has a stiff neck or if you are not able to console him or her.


The usual doctor-prescribed treatment for ear infection is antibiotics. If the ear infection is minor, you may treat the child at home by

  • giving the child pain medication such as Advil, Motrin, or Tylenol.
  • applying a warm washcloth over the ear to soothe the ache with heat.
  • making sure your child is resting more than usual.

Preventing Ear Infections

Ear infections are common among children, but there are ways to prevent them.

  • Babies who are breastfed tend to have less infections than bottle-fed babies.
  • Avoid air pollution, including cigarette smoke.
  • Good hygiene helps keep away the germs that cause infections. Wash those little hands often with soap and water.
  • If you think your child may have an ear infection, request your appointment or call us at (540) 739-3623.