July 10 2021
Ear infections most commonly occur in the middle ear which is known as acute otitis media. It is often caused by bacteria or viruses. The main function of the middle ear is the transmission of sound from the outer ear to the inner ear. Infections occurring in the outer ear are usually the swimmer’s ear. Labyrinthitis is a serious inner ear infection that impairs hearing and balance accompanied by vertigo and some degree of hearing loss.
The bacteria Streptococcus pneumonia is the most common cause of middle ear infections. A virus can also cause severe ear infections. The presence of cold and allergies leads to congestion that blocks the Eustachian tube, which is the connecting link between the middle ear to the back of the throat. This congestion can lead to the accumulation of fluid and pressure. This creates an environment for bacteria or viruses that have traveled up the Eustachian tube into the middle ear and cause an ear infection.
Symptoms and risk factors of ear infections
There is a good deal of inflammation and fluid buildup going on inside of the ear when there is an infection of the middle ear. This causes pain or an earache. It can also lead to a temporary loss of hearing ability. Lying down worsens the pain or earache. It may also cause a fever. Children are more prone to experience ear infections than adults because of their underdeveloped immune systems. Some of the commonly used home remedies for treating ear infections are:
- Garlic Oil
Studies show that garlic has potent antimicrobial, antiviral and antifungal properties because of which strengthen the immune system. As it is a natural antibiotic, garlic oil helps in providing relief from an ear infection as it can kill the offending pathogens. Since antibiotics cause allergies in children and bacterial ear infections have become antibiotic-resistant, using natural remedies like garlic oil is effective in treating ear infections.
Probiotics are one of the preferred methods in treating pediatric ear infections. When an ear infection occurs, it is necessary to boost the immune system in various ways. This can be achieved by the consumption of probiotics, either in the form of supplements or through the diet by eating foods like kimchi, kombucha, coconut, kefir, and fermented foods. Probiotics are also helpful in preventing the occurrence of ear infections.
- Chiropractic Care
chiropractic adjustments help in improving ear infections. The accumulation of fluid in the middle ear cavity helps in the growth of viruses and bacteria. This causes ear infections. Chiropractic care involves spinal manipulation of the cervical vertebrae which can help in the relaxation of the muscles surrounding the Eustachian tubes allowing proper drainage. Chiropractic care is also effective in restoring the natural function of the nervous system, which can improve the overall health of the body.
- Identifying and Treating the Root Causes of Allergies
One of the main causes of ear infections is food allergies. Studies show that children with a middle ear infection along with fluid accumulation had some sort of underlying food allergy. Various allergic foods that most commonly trigger ear infections include gluten, dairy, and nuts.
Mullein which is also known as Verbascum thapsus is a plant. The oil that is made from its flowers is highly beneficial in the treatment of earache. Using a tincture of mullein either alone or in combination with other herbs is used as a natural remedy for treating earaches and ear infections. Studies show that herbal ear drops containing mullein are extremely effective in relieving pain in ear infections.
- Heat and Rest
When the body is trying to fight off an ear infection, getting adequate rest and eating a healthy and balanced diet are crucial. Application of heat to the affected part of the ear can also help with pain relief.
- Vitamin D
Vitamin D boosts immune health. It is effective in treating ear infections. Studies show that the risk of developing chronic otitis media accompanied by effusion can be decreased by increasing serum levels of vitamin D. Increased sun exposure, higher dietary intake of vitamin D along vitamin D supplementation are some of the methods to increase vitamin D levels in the body.
Some of the Foods that are recommended for Ear Infections are
- Water: It helps in maintaining hydration. It is also beneficial in clearing out the mucus in the ears.
- Wild-caught fish: The presence of Omega-3 fats in wild-caught fish and other foods like chia seeds and flaxseeds are effective in reducing the levels of inflammation in the body. Taking Alvizia flaxseed oil supplements strengthens the immune system.
- Non-dairy baby formula: In formula-fed babies, switching to coconut or goat’s milk-based formulas helps in reducing the occurrence of frequent allergies.
- Fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C: The regular intake of these fruits and vegetables keeps the immune system strong. Thus it increases the body’s ability to ward off infection.
Some of the Foods that should be avoided when an ear infection is present include
- Potential food allergens: Some of the foods that commonly cause allergies include conventional dairy products, gluten, shrimp, and peanuts.
- Conventional dairy products: Using Pasteurized-cow dairy products trigger the production of mucus and also worsens the infection.
- Sugar: Reduces the functioning of the immune and it causes the formation of inflammation.
- Processed foods: These foods may contain artificial chemicals and preservatives that can cause sensitivity in some individuals.
Some of the Supplement that can be used in the treatment of Ear Infection :
- Garlic oil ear drops (2 warm drops in the affected ear daily) - Garlic oil is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory.
- Zinc (10 mg 2x a day for those older than 2 years old) - Zinc increases the functioning of the immune system and also promotes faster healing.
- Vitamin C (1,000mg 3x a day) - Vitamin C enhances immune function and lowers inflammation in the body.
- Vitamin D3 (400 IU – 2,000 IU daily) - Vitamin D3 helps support the immune system.