Ear infection is a very common occurrence among young children. The middle ear is connected to the back of the throat via a tube known as the Eustachian tube. When the tube blocks due to congestion or swelling (from colds or allergies) fluid is held up inside the middle ear – a perfect breeding environment for bacteria. In this article, we discuss preventive measures and the natural remedies for ear infections.
Due to the rising incidents of resistant bacteria strains that cause infections, it’s advisable to first consider natural methods of treatment. Ear infections in children are rarely serious and they tend to cease by the time a child reaches two years of age. Instead of a direct antibiotic subscription, the American Academy of Pediatrics (APP) recommends a watchful waiting approach in kids who present a generally healthy pattern.
Some ear infection remedies include;
1. Heat – Placing a damp washcloth over the ear and letting it sit till it cools is very soothing. Repeat this process several times a day for best results. Avoid use of heating pads and bottles due to the risk of burns.
2. Garlic oil – Garlic contains powerful antimicrobial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties in addition to boosting the immunity.
3. Probiotics – often counted in virtually all lists of alternative and complementary cures, probiotics boost the immune system and help prevent infections such as ear infections. Additionally, the friendly bacteria found in probiotics help prevent ear infections in children. Foods rich in probiotics include yogurt, Kefir, and Pickles.
4. Get down to the root cause – food allergies often cause ear infections. Studies show that half of the kids with food allergies are more likely to develop ear infections. Avoid or substitute any foods that may flare up allergies in your child.
5. Omega-3 fats – chia seeds, flax seeds and wild-caught fish are some rich sources of omega-3, which annihilates inflammation.
As your child grows, the Eustachian tubes lengthen, develop and mature for effective draining. The above natural remedies are great alternatives to the commonly prescribed amoxicillin – as you wait out the “ear trouble” phase.