The ears like any other body part are prone to damage, injury or infection. This could be caused due to many reasons. The ear can be divide into three parts. The external part which can be seen is the outer ear, behind which is the middle ear and further inside is the inner ear. An earache can be anything from mildly painful to extremely painful and is usually due to pressure build up in the middle ear or due to fluid buildup in the inner ear. The later most of the time leads to infection of the ear.
A very common cause of a earache is the Eustachian tube being blocked. This tube connects the back of your throat to the ear. When the Eustachian tube gets blocked there is a buildup of fluid which causes a painful earache. This fluid buildup also causes bacteria to generate which results in an ear infection. There are also some other common causes for earaches like colds, sinus infections, teeth problems, something stuck in the ear, build up of wax or fluid, ear injuries, allergies and changes in air pressure among others. There are a few things that we can do to avoid earaches. Don’t put things into your ears like ear buds, hair pins and your fingers as these could not only damage the eardrum but could also affect your hearing ability permanently.
Get your ears cleaned often by a professional often. When attempting to clean the ear by oneself make sure that you don’t dig to deep and injure yourself. When blowing your nose avoid blowing the nose too hard or violently. Blow your nose gently and one nostril at a time, attempting to blow both nostrils at the same time would lead to pressure buildup and ear popping.
When an adult has an earache one should apply a warm napkin or a heating bag next to the ear, alternatively one could try a cold pack of ice held near the ear for about 10-15 minutes. If that does not work as well you should seek medical attention as soon as possible. In case the ears get blocked due to change in air pressure you could try chewing gum or taking in a few gulps of air and holding it this normally tends to open the blockage.
In case of children if they have an earache they tend to cup the ear, often any physical discomfort would cause them to be moody and more fussy than normal. The child may also get feverish and may lose its appetite. Do not ignore any of these symptoms and immediately take your child to visit the doctor.