There are many different reasons behind an ear infection. Most of the time, they are caused by things like swimming in polluted water, not cleaning at all or harshly cleaning your ears, not drying them after bathing, etc. Bacteria such as Streptococcus pneumoniae or Haemophilus influenzae can infect the middle ear, which can infect the ears.
To find out if you have an ear infection, look out for symptoms like itchiness on the outer ear, loss of appetite, ear discharge, mild deafness, or fever. Even though there are many types of ear infections that you can study on multiple websites, most of them, however, can be treated at home if you cannot go to a doctor.
Among topical antibacterial sprays for the outer ear, EarCalm and certain others show great effectiveness. Nonetheless, many more effective methods work just as well. If you have an ear infection, below are some methods that can help you treat it easily at home.
Methods to try at home to help an ear infection:
1) Using Hydrogen Peroxide:
Hydrogen Peroxide is an effective way to treat an ear infection. Start by taking a small amount of hydrogen peroxide and putting it in the ear, wait for a few moments, and lastly, tilt your head to let the fluid out. It’s very likely to treat your ear infection.
If you’re wondering if it’s safe to use hydrogen peroxide in your ear, then yes, it’s safe if you use only a few drops of it.
2) Saltwater Gargle:
Saltwater is known for its ability to reduce inflammation, which is why this method has a high chance of treating ear infections. The technique is to take some water in a cup and warm it up. After warming it up, add one teaspoon of salt and give it a good mix. Now that you have the salt water don’t put it directly in your ear. You’ve to gargle with it for a few minutes.
Now, keep in mind this method may not work for every person as each person has different causes of an infection. Nonetheless, this method is bound to work if your infection is throat related.
3) OTC pain/fever relievers:
To help with the pain that comes with ear infections, the pain relievers that are mostly available at home, such as ibuprofen or Tylenol, can work remarkably. However, when it comes to a child, make sure to contact a nurse line before giving the child any medicine, as it may not be safe for them. As for adults, these pain relievers can work wonders.
4) Resting Properly:
It’s a known fact that resting your body properly helps strengthen your immune system. Accordingly, a healthy immune system for a body results in combating any infections or illnesses you might be suffering from. Therefore, let your body rest if you have an ear infection.
A bonus tip while you rest, elevate the affected ear. By doing this, the infection can drain out while you sleep. Make sure not to sleep on your affected ear, as it will only increase the pain, try to sleep on the other side of your head. The sleeping position plays a vital role in increasing pain.
5) The Compress Method:
This method is probably the most used remedy at home. For this method, you basically need to take some water and a washcloth. You can either warm up the water or use the ice-cold water, soak your washcloth in the water of your choice and put it in the affected ear area. Make sure the water isn’t too cold or too warm. The temperature is obviously up to you, and alternating between hot and cold can help too.
6) Using Apple Cider Vinegar:
Apple cider vinegar can be used to soothe the pain of an ear infection. Now, obviously, there aren’t any known studies or research that prove apple cider vinegar as a treatment for ear infections. However, it contains acetic acid, which is known to contain antibacterial properties; consequently, it does work in treating the infection.
The process starts by taking equal parts of apple cider vinegar and water. Make sure that the water is warm. Not too cold or too hot. Mix them well. When done, apply 5 to 10 drops using a dropper bottle. Now, gently cover your ears with some cotton or cloth, whatever you prefer, while you lean to your side to let that mixture sit there for a while.
After at least 5 minutes, you can remove the cotton or the cloth. You can use apple cider vinegar with rubbing alcohol too instead of water, and the process remains the same.
7) Drying Ear Drops:
Using drying ear drops to treat ear infections is a well-known way. They are readily available over the counter at any medical store near everyone. They can work well for outer ear infections.
Although, keep in mind that they aren’t to be used in some conditions, for example, don’t use them if you have ear tubes, if your eardrum is ruptured or if there’s any kind of discharge coming out of your ear.