There’s nothing worse than the feeling of helplessness that takes over a parent’s heart when their child is in pain, this is especially true when your beloved child has an earache. After a recent bout with earaches and an ear infection, I spent a lot of time researching and trying out home remedies to help stem the tide of pain in my girl.
Here is what I would suggest for any parent who’s child is suffering from ear pain caused by an infection or wax build up.
1) Apply gentle heat. Whether through the use of a warm washcloth, rice pack or heating pad (set to low only and do not leave your child alone while the pad is in use), the heat can help stimulate and dilate the swollen blood vessels found in and around the ear; if there is wax build up in the canal, the heat can help it melt and flow more freely. Make sure you only apply the heat for less than 20 minutes at a time and that you cover the heating pad (if used) with a cloth to keep it from burning the sensitive ear area.
2) Try a diluted mixture of warm water and 3% hydrogen peroxide. The hydrogen peroxide can help clear up and remove any wax build up, provide temporary pain relief and fight infection, this is usually a first stop for parents. Dilute the hydrogen peroxide with warm (not hot) water and apply to the ear while holding your head tilted to the side. After ten minutes, tilt your child’s head to the other side and allow the mixture to drain out, you may need to gently drop a bit more fresh water into the ear to help rinse any particles out and clean the ear.
3) Defy gravity. You may find that your child’s ear pain is worse when he or she is laying down (YIKES! Bedtime will be a mess!). If this is the case, try propping your child up in the bed with extra pillows (or do what we did and put a bean bag under the pillows to add elevation). Sleeping this way will help relieve the pressure and allow you both to get some rest.
4) Use over-the-counter homeopathic ear drops and medication (only if this is medically safe for you). The ear drops tend to be a little hit or miss for us, but we’ve had them work often enough that would recommend them as an option – I tend to use the Similasan Homeopathic Ear Drops from Amazon (Amazon affiliate link). While I tend to only use them as a last resort, I have found that adding the pain relievers (never aspirin since it can cause Reye Syndrome) can relieve pain and help your child get the rest they need.
5) See a doctor. Even if your child is starting to feel better, it’s a good idea for you to take your small person to the doctors at your earliest convenience. You don’t want to miss something that could be more serious.
Parents hate to see their children in pain and will normally do whatever they can to ease their child’s discomfort, these tricks help us when one of our girls get an earache. I hope they help you the next time your child is suffering from ear pain.