What is an Ear Infection?

An ear infection is commonly a bacterial or viral infection that affects the middle ear. Inflammation and a buildup of fluid in the middle ear can cause ear infections to be quite painful. Ear pain can manifest in many ways, including dull, throbbing pain to burning and sharp pain.

The most common causes for an ear infection include the common cold, allergies, excess mucus buildup, sinusitis, infected adenoids, or irritation due to tobacco products.

There are many symptoms associated with an ear infection, including:

  • Ear pain
  • Drainage from the ear
  • Trouble hearing

Children also commonly experience ear infections. Some signs of an ear infection that you should look for in your young child include:

  • Pulling or tugging at the ear
  • Ear pain
  • Poor sleep
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty responding to sounds
  • Loss of balance
  • Headache
  • Drainage from the ear
  • Fever

If symptoms persist longer than one day, ear pain is severe, or you experience discharge from the ear, you will want to seek medical treatment for your ear infection.

How to Treat an Ear infection

Depending on the cause of your ear infection, your physician can take several treatment approaches. Antibiotics may be prescribed to reduce inflammation in the Eustachian tube. Pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help to reduce any pain, and can also help to lower fever. For children who experience recurrent ear infections, it may be recommended that ear tubes be placed.

In the Skokie and Evanston, Illinois area, Ultra Med Urgent Care strives to provide patients with top-notch and timely care. Contact us today to learn more about the services we offer.