3 Different Types of Ear infections

3 Different Types of Ear infections

by Natalie Aylett

 

We all know that ear infections are common, especially in children. But did you know there are 3 different types of ear infections that you can get? It's true! This article will explain the 3 different types of ear infections you can get, the symptoms of ear infections, and how to treat them.

3 types of ear infections

  • Acute Otitis Media: This is a middle ear infection and can be the result of a virus or bacteria. Fluid is usually trapped in the middle ear causing inflammation and pain. Symptoms include fever, drainage of fluid from the ear or even hearing loss.
  • Otitis Media with Effusion: This infection happens when fluid builds up in the middle ear from allergies or airborne irritants. This infection can take some time to fight off and it may have a small effect on your hearing. Symptoms can include the ear feeling full but usually does not involve pain or fever.
  • Swimmer's Ear: This occurs when water is stuck in the ear for a great period of time. The water can turn into bacteria causing your ear to become red and itchy. This can happen from swimming pools or just a shower. The best symptom to look for when determining what is wrong with the ear is if the outside ear is red and tender.

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Best ways to treat ear infections

It is true that for some people, ear infections can go away on their own. But if a few days go by and the symptoms do not seem to be improving, it is good to see a doctor. When visiting a doctor, on most occasions they will prescribe you an antibiotic to fight the infection. It is important to listen carefully to the instructions given by the doctor and to follow them strictly. If you have swimmer's ear, it is vital to keep the ear dry during this time.

When it comes to the pain aspect of an ear infection, there is really nothing a doctor can do. They will usually recommend an OTC pain killer such as Tylenol or Ibuprofen that can sometimes take hours to become effective.

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Knowing your ear infections

Not knowing what infection you have can make it harder to treat. Next time you or your child is struggling with an ear issue, remember the symptoms above when determining what the problem is. Also don't forget to check out Ear Pain MD to help with the pain!

 

Click here to watch Dr. Steve Martin speak about ear infections!

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