A child’s immune system isn’t as effective as an adult’s which makes it more difficult for them to fight infections. If your child has the following symptoms or if they complain of having pain in their ear, they most likely have an ear infection.
- Clumsiness or problems with balance
- Fever in infants and younger children
- Fluid draining from the ear
- Fussiness and crying
- Trouble hearing or responding to quiet sounds
- Trouble sleeping
- Tugging or pulling at the ear
The CDC reports that five out of six children will have at least one ear infection by their third birthday and it is the most common reason parents bring their child to a doctor. The best way to manage a child’s ear infection is to take them to a pediatric Otolaryngologist, an ear, nose, and throat doctor. Ear infections in children should not be taken for granted, because this could be an indicator of other medical conditions, such as asthma, heart disease, or a developmental disorder.
ENT Birmingham – Treatment and Monitoring Ear Infections
An ear infection in children will often clear up on its own, where treatment may begin with managing pain and monitoring the problem. However, if the pain becomes worse or ear infections are reoccurring, then take your child to a physician. Generally, an ear infection (“acute otitis media”) is the result of a bacterial or viral infection that affects one of three types of ear infections:
- “Acute otitis media” which is the most common ear infection, where the middle ear is infected and swollen with fluid, trapped behind the eardrum.
- “Otitis media with effusion” occurs after an ear infection, where fluid stays trapped behind the eardrum.
- “Chronic otitis media with effusion” is when fluid remains in the middle ear for a long time or it may keep coming back even though there is no infection.
Children with an ear infection who are younger than six months old are treated with antibiotics. Older children are usually just monitored because common ear infections are virus based and it will soon disappear. If they are prescribed medications, they should be watched to make sure that they take their medication every day.
Call Shelby Ear Nose and Throat Associates if you’re looking for an ENT Doctor in Birmingham, Shelby County, Alabaster, Pelham, Calera or Hoover at (205) 621-8900.