Particularly around in the colder months, children are more likely to become sick. When children spend more time indoors, the opportunity to spread infection is greater, which is why during the winter so many children catch a cold. However, many of these colds can actually progress into more complicated illnesses such as sinus and ear infections.
Especially after a child becomes sick, from a common cold or upper respiratory infection, any sign of ear pain is often troubling to parents. Without an otoscope, which is a medical device to examine the ears, parents are often compelled to take their child to a physician for a thorough examination. While this is always preferred, it is important to note that ear pain alone is not enough to diagnose the presence of an ear infection.
The reasons why children experience ear pain can be related to many different factors which are not related to infection. For example, sinus drainage often causes ear pain. In young children, the emergence of upper adult molars can also cause pain in the ear. One last point to consider is that toddlers quite often pull on their ears. Parents should be mindful of their child’s behavior to best determine if the ear pain their child is experiencing is related to actual physical activities performed by the child go to website.
When a child does describe pain in their ears, it is important for parents to look inside their child’s ears. Often parents will find an excessive amount of earwax, which is the medical term used for earwax. A buildup of earwax in the ear canal can create an environment in which bacteria is allowed to grow. Such buildups of earwax often lead to an ear infection. When parents suspect ear canal blockage from earwax, it is best that they seek the services of an otolaryngologist. A practicing otolaryngologist is a physician which specializes in treating ear conditions and can effectively use a curette to remove earwax. Parents, which try to clean out their child’s ears with a Q-Tip, may actually lodge some earwax in the ear canal and actually make the condition worse.
To determine if a child actually has an ear infection will require a close visual examination of the ear. Medical professionals use an otoscope for patient ear examinations, which is a unique device that has a light and magnification lens. As the cost of these medical instruments has come down, more parents are now purchasing these for use at home as well. When properly educated, parents can also look for signs of an ear infection in their children.
The most common ear infection that children develop is a middle ear infection. Treatment for these infections normally includes a prescribed antibiotic medication. Less common infections include outer ear infections and are commonly referred to as swimmers ear. Swimmers ear is also treatable with prescribed antibiotics. An even lesser common medical condition of the ear is a ruptured tympanic membrane, which is commonly referred to as a ruptured eardrum. In all of the aforementioned conditions an otoscope is essential in making the proper diagnosis.
Most consumer grade otoscopes available come with a detailed diagnosis chart. This chart allows parents to compare the visual appearance of their child’s ears with those appearing on the chart. This comparison can give parents visual evidence as to why their child’s ears hurt and if a physician’s office visit is necessary. However, it is important to note that interpreting chart diagrams should never be entirely relied upon by parents. When it comes to a child’s health, a physician’s examination and diagnosis are more reliable than the opinions of those not medically licensed to practice otolaryngology.