Earache(कान दर्द): Causes and Management

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Dr. Sushmita Gupta
ENT Specialist / Otorhinolaryngology

Earache(कान दर्द): Causes and Management

In this video, Dr. Sushmita Gupta, Consultant ENT at Apollo Clinic and CHD city Hospital, talks about earache: its common causes and how to manage it at home.

What is earache?

Ear ache is widespread. Often children suffer from earaches during cold or cough. There can be many reasons behind earache. We can divide the ear into outer, middle ear, and inner ear. Infection or inflammation in the outer or middle part of the ear may result in earaches. Apparently, earaches can occur due to tooth or gum infection, nose blockage. Water accumulation behind the eardrum, neck pain, impacted wax, or any injury or presence of the foreign body in the ear, may result in ear ache.

Why does my earache more during the night?

When we lie down, there is a blockage in the eustachian tube, or the ventilation tube. It reduces in the ventilation tube or is unable to drain properly. Also, if one has a cold, then it may result in blockage, building pressure, and thereby earache.

How to treat earache at home?

Painkillers are the best option for immediate relief. One can give paracetamol or ibuprofen to small children, if they are not allergic. Avoid straight lying down, and take steam. Besides, one may sip fluid like water or juices and milk.  It would help release the pressure and reduce the pain. Heat pads also are a good option to relieve ear pain. 

Why not use earbuds?

The most important thing is to avoid self medication and consult a doctor before opting for ear drops. Earbuds are a big no as rather than cleaning they put wax more inside. Doctor advise to take proper medication and reduce the complication.

Symptoms of earache

Let’s talk about those symptoms whose presence requires the doctor’s immediate attention.

Usually, we ignore ear aches thinking that they will heal. However, if the usage of medicine cannot control ear pain. And if there is fever with swelling in the ear or nearby areas, then it is a matter of concern. Adverse cases it may affect hearing ability, and lead to infection. 

Discharge from ear

Discharge from the ear is a common reason for earache. In particular, if the discharge is stinky or pink or there is blood, you should immediately seek your doctor. One requires proper treatment for both infection and inflammation. You will receive treatment depending on whether it’s a common cold or any other problem. Once we identify the root cause, the doctor will sort it, and one can be safe from its complications.

Water in the ear

Another prevalent problem is water in the ear. Often patients ask what we can do under this condition. Water may often go inside the ear during a bath or swimming. Usually, water drains on its own, but if it doesn’t, it might lead to fungal infection. 

How to manage water in the ear ?

One can tilt their head towards one side, and pull their ear outside, which will straighten out the ear canal, and water will come out. Do clean water with a towel or tissue. Avoid the use of earbuds. Earbuds may cause injury to ear skin or eardrums. If these aren’t helpful, then you must consult your doctor. They may use suction or dry mopping to remove water from the ears.

Can we use hydrogen peroxide for ear cleaning ?

Hydrogen peroxide helps in the removal of wax by relatively softening it. Therefore, doctors commonly use it in a very diluted form. However, its repeated use or high concentration may cause inflammation in the skin of the ear. As a result, it causes swelling or pain in the ear. Avoid the use of hydrogen peroxide without seeking a doctor’s advice. 

Bottom line:

We are available at Apollo clinic if you have any of these symptoms or are suffering from any ear-related problem for which you wish to have detailed knowledge. You can meet us or contact us. Till then, stay fit, stay happy. Keep your ear dry and clean.

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