When a child complains about the appearance of acute pain in the ear, crying and capricious – this condition of the baby will take out of balance even the most stable and experienced parent. Sharp shooting pain in the ear is not easy to bear an adult, to say nothing of children.
The pain signals the appearance of an inflammatory process in the ear. In other words, otitis develops. According to statistics, by the age of five almost every child at least once, but has time to get sick with this disease.
To alleviate the condition of the child and get rid of the disease, each parent should be able to distinguish the first signs of the disease, know what treatment is appropriate for the child, as well as what measures should be taken to prevent otitis in the future. Let’s deal with it!
Varieties of the disease
Our ear consists of three areas: outer, middle and inner. The first is the visible part of the ear, which we call the ear in everyday life. The middle and inner parts are not visible and have a complex structure. The appearance of acute ear inflammation in children can touch each of its parts, so the diagnosis is divided into external, middle and inner otitis respectively.
Two thirds of the reported cases of acute middle otitis occur in children. In children under a year old – two years old, this percentage is even higher. As pathogens enter the middle ear from the nasopharynx.
Acute inflammation of the middle ear is represented by catarrhal, exudative and purulent stages. Catarrhal inflammation is considered an acute inflammation of the initial stage. During this period, the patient begins to feel stuffy in the ear and hearing loss. In the exudative form, a viscous secret is formed, and it is this secret that causes the pain. A distinctive feature of the acute process of this type of inflammation is festering from the ear. This is the most severe type of disease, accompanied by high fever.
If the average acute otitis in children is not treated, the development of internal otitis begins – labyrinthitis. For children this condition is extremely dangerous and requires proper treatment. Otherwise, the consequences can be very severe.
Based on the duration of the disease, otitis is divided into acute, subacute, and chronic forms. Acute course of the disease is characterized by a rapid onset, this condition lasts no longer than three weeks. If a child’s illness lasts from three weeks to three months, we are talking about subacute form. If the acute illness is not treated or the acute inflammatory process is treated incorrectly, the inflammatory process will be chronized. This disease will already last more than three months.
Why does inflammation of the middle ear occur?
As we mentioned, children are more likely to have ear disease than adults. And this is easily explained. The main cause of the disease is directly related to the characteristics of the child’s auditory tube. The anatomy of the eustachian tube is such that it is shorter and wider than the auditory tube of an adult. And the lack of curves allows the infection to freely penetrate from the nasopharynx into the middle ear cavity.
Causes of otitis are:
- Overcooling or, conversely, overheating of the body;
- chronic infections in children (e.g., chronic inflammatory processes of the nasopharynx, from where the infection can easily enter the ear);
- weak immunity;
- allergic rhinitis;
- ear damage;
- Inadequate breast-feeding: babies should not be breastfed lying on their backs – in this position, milk can get from the nasal cavity and throat to the drum cavity and trigger an inflammatory process there.