Natural Remedies for Ear Infections AND Everything You Need to Know about Ear Infections, Part 2Welcome to the second part of a two-post series on natural remedies for ear infections, with everything you need to know about ear infections that most likely your doctor won’t tell you. In the first post, you learned that 80% of children will get an ear infection before their 3rd birthday (at least one, many kids have several). That scary statistic comes to us from the National Institutes of Health, a branch of the US Department of Health & Human Services. In last week’s post, we talked about ear infection facts, myths and prevention. You learned why ear infections are often misdiagnosed, and that your child’s pillow might be contributing to the problem. We covered dietary changes and more exposure to sunshine as natural ways to prevention infections of the ear. Today we’ll cover 8 antibiotic-free ways to manage an ear infection once it’s already popped up. No drugs, no medicine with side-effects, just natural healing. Ready to get started?
The American Academy of Pediatrics Recommendation that Bears Repeating:The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) tells us that 80% of children whose ear infections are not treated immediately with antibiotics heal on their own. Their recommendation (although very few physicians follow it) is to first watch and wait. Even so, most physicians just whip out their prescription pads and start the suffering child on a series of antibiotics. If the child has symptoms of an ear infection (earaches, pain, nausea, dizziness, loss of hearing, fever), doctors prescribe antibiotics that are in many cases unneeded … and unsuccessful. Look at those symptoms. Many of them show up because of any number of conditions, not just an ear infection. Checking a cultured swab is the only foolproof way to spot an ear infection, but too many doctors ignore this step in the diagnosis process. What can you do as a concerned parent looking for the safest, quickest relief? Take these steps.
- Trust your intuition. If you can’t get away from the thought that your child should see her primary care provider, by all means make an appointment.
- Tell your child’s doctor you want the affected ear swabbed and cultured. It may sound like I’m beating a dead horse here, but this is the only way to accurately diagnose an ear infection. Don’t just let your doctor take a peek in the ear and then make a diagnosis.
- Your doctor is likely going to suggest an antibiotics prescription. Let her know you are aware of the AAP “watch and wait” recommendation. A well-informed, reliable doctor will agree with you that it is okay to wait a day or two before filling a prescription.
- Doctors often make prescription recommendations because they are used to parents that want a quick fix. Make it clear that you prefer to avoid drugs and pills if at all possible, and ask about any recommended options.
- You should consider seeking the advice of another physician if your doctor doesn’t provide several treatment options. In this case, consult a naturopath, an integrative family physician, or some other alternative practitioner.
8 Antibiotic-Free Ways to Manage an Ear Infection
- Chiropractic Adjustments
- Massage and CranioSacral Therapy
- Light Therapy
- Moist Heat
- Garlic Oil
Homemade Garlic Oil for EarachesYou’ll need a small glass container (preferably glass) with a lid. You can also use a small plastic container if that’s all you have on hand. Ingredients:
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Warm the oil lightly in a pan on the stove over low heat (you don’t want it hot, just warm to the touch).
- Place the oil and garlic in the container and cover securely with the lid.
- It is best to let the oil and garlic infuse at room temperature overnight before using. If you need to apply earlier, you can apply some of the oil within 2 to 3 hours.
- Wash and dry your hands. Use a clean finger to rub the oil around the outside of the ear and on the infected area.
- You may use your finger to rub some at the entrance to the ear. A drop or two can also be placed inside the ear canal, or on a cotton ball inserted into the ear.
- Plain, Old, Warm Olive Oil
- Colloidal Silver
- Rock Salt
Voila!Now you’re armed with the facts about ear infections that can help you heal them naturally (including how to talk to your doctor). You know how to prevent and manage them without always resorting to drugs or invasive procedures. I would love to hear your feedback. How do you help your child manage the discomfort of an ear infection? Is there a home remedy or family secret you’d like to share? Help us boost our children’s defenses and overcome our country’s dependence on antibiotics by sharing your wisdom with us below. And if you would like simple steps to improve your family’s health then be sure to download my FREE Guide on 12-Steps to Bio-Hack Your Family’s Health. Wishing you well, -Dr. Jessica
Hi! I'm Dr. Jessica
I’m Dr. Jessica Payne, Medical Intuitive, Doctor of Natural Medicine, and your go-to guide for living your life naturally…More
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