Home Remedies for Ear Infection
Ear infections can be really troublesome and outrightly painful. More commonly reported among children, these ear infections can be caused to several reasons, such as bacterial or viral infection, sinus infections, cavities, wax build-up, allergies, tonsillitis, etc. But in most cases, simple and easy home remedies work wonders as ear infection treatment.
These infections can occur in the outer, middle or inner ear. The body’s immune system fights off these infections that generally heal on their own. Here, we will discuss some effective home remedies for ear infections that will rule out the need for antibiotics.
Garlic is one of the best ear infection remedies, owing to its antibacterial, antiviral and pain-relieving properties. When eaten, it boosts the immune system and helps to fight infection. You can also topically apply garlic oil to reduce the pain of an earache. Soak some crushed garlic in warm olive oil for 30 minutes. Strain the garlic and apply the oil into the canal. You can repeat the process up to 4 times a day.
Cold or warm compresses
This is a very effective way for alleviating pain. Warm compresses such as a heating pad or damp cloth and cold compresses such as ice packs can be used to get relief from ear pain. This method is safe and highly recommended for both children and adults. You can place the compress over the ear for 10-15 minutes and follow up with the next after an interval of 10 minutes.
Sleep without putting pressure on your ear
In case of an ear infection, certain sleep postures can aggravate the condition while some can help in getting relief from the pain. It is advisable to sleep with your affected ear facing upward rather than pushed downward against the pillow. This can help the ears in draining. Alternatively, you can sleep with two pillows to keep your head raised high. This also allows the ears to drain faster.
Hydrogen peroxide is one of the most effective ear infection treatment methods. It is a great solution for softening and removing excess ear wax that gets accumulated in the ear. To use it, simply put a few drops of hydrogen peroxide into the affected ear and let it rest for a couple of minutes. Finally, drain it and clean your ear with distilled water.
Tea Tree oil
Tea tree oil is known for its antibacterial, antifungal, and antiseptic properties. It kills the infection causing bacteria and removes the impurities that clog the eardrum.
To use this, add 1-2 drops of tea tree oil to 2-4 drops of any carrier oil, preferably warm olive oil. Use a clean dropper to put the oil directly into the ear canal. Make sure the mixture isn’t too hot as it may burn the eardrum.
With amazing anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, onions can help to bring relief to sore and inflamed ears. They can fight the infection and naturally treat earaches. Simply put some 2-3 drops of onion juice in the affected ear and let it sit for some minutes. After that, drain out any excess juice and clean your ear. Follow it several times a day to get relief.
Ginger is a great ingredient that features robust antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
To use this, extract ginger juice and put a few drops into the affected ear. Or, put one teaspoon of freshly grated ginger into 3-4 drops of warmed olive oil. Let the mixture sit for a couple of minutes before putting some drops into the infected ear.
This is another very effective ear infection treatment. Gentle massage can relieve the sharp pain radiating from the teeth or jaw area. You can massage the tender ear area along with the surrounding muscles. For instance, apply pressure on the area behind the ears and follow a downward motion, starting from the ears down the neck. This will help in draining excess fluid from the ears, preventing the pain from getting worse.
Some more natural ear infection treatments
- Fresh sesame seed oil
- Juice from the bark of a banana tree
- Herbal teas, especially peppermint
- Organic linseed oil
- Mullein flower oil
- Apple cider vinegar
Consultation with a doctor
The best home remedy for an ear infection depends upon the cause. Most of the infections are caused due to an inflammation in the middle ear, making the part swell. Using natural ear infection remedies can help in making the pain bearable as the body fights off the infection on its own. Generally, ear infections clear up on their own in 1-2 weeks.
However, if symptoms such as high fever, dizziness, vomiting, bleeding from the ear canal, headache, loss of hearing or sharp penetrating pain are seen, it is advisable to consult professional help instantly.