Ear Infections: Know the Causes and Symptoms
Ear infections are common in adults and children and can be caused by various factors. Here is what you need to know.
Ear infections can be contracted easily.
In children, ear infections are usually caused by a buildup of fluid in the middle ear, often resulting from a cold or other upper respiratory infections. This fluid can become infected with bacteria or a virus, resulting in an ear infection.
In adults, ear infections are often caused by a bacterial infection of the ear canal, which can result from a cold or other upper respiratory infection or an infection from swimming in contaminated water.
Allergies can also be a factor in ear infections, as they can cause the Eustachian tube to become inflamed, leading to fluid buildup in the middle ear.
Additionally, inserting objects, such as cotton swabs, into the ear canal can also cause ear infections, as it can push bacteria-laden wax deep into the ear. Finally, a weakened immune system can also lead to ear infections, as it can make it easier for bacteria and viruses to take hold.
Ear infections can be minor or severe.
While most ear infections can be treated with antibiotics and home remedies, some may require more intensive medical care.
In some cases, an ear infection can cause complications such as facial paralysis, meningitis, abscesses, or hearing loss, which can require urgent treatment. Severe cases of ear infections might also require follow-up care if the infection is not responding to home care or antibiotics. Additionally, young children and those with weakened immune systems should be seen by a medical professional immediately to prevent serious complications. An urgent care physician can determine if specialized care is necessary.
Recognize ear infection symptoms.
Knowing the symptoms can help you to recognize when you or your child may have an ear infection. Here are the top 10 ear infection symptoms:
- Ear pain
- Fluid draining from the
- Decreased hearing
- Ear fullness or a feeling of pressure in the ear
- Itching in the ear
- Loss of balance
- Irritability and difficulty sleeping
Diagnose and Treat Ear Infections at Emerald Coast Urgent Care
Addressing the above symptoms quickly is key to preserving your hearing and overall ear health. Please don’t hesitate to come to Emerald Coast Urgent Care if you suspect you could be suffering from an ear infection.