Parents are keen to notice any discomfort their kids experience around their ears and other parts of the head. However, ear pain can be severe enough to merit urgent care near them. Understanding the causes and symptoms of ear pain can help you detect it early and seek suitable treatment before it is too late.
What Is an Earache?
An earache describes pain in any part of the ear, inside or outside the ear canal. An earache can manifest in various ways, including causing a hearing impairment that can be temporary or permanent. Ear pain in adults may not be as prevalent as among children, but it can also occur. The pain can occur in one or both ears. As you seek earache relief at a clinic for urgent care near you, you should be in a position to describe your pain accurately, whether dull, sharp or burning. The pain you experience depends on the underlying cause of your pain and the location of the infection in your ear canal.
Causes of Earaches
A crucial factor to master when analyzing the causes of ear pain is that it can result from an injury or an infection. An injury will often affect the outer region of an ear as infections affect the inside of the canal. Some common causes of earaches are:
- Ear infections – various factors can result in infections in your ear canal, including the following:
- Prolonged use of hearing aids
- Putting objects in your ears – especially for children, whose hygiene is often questionable.
- Respiratory infections
- Change of ear pressure – common for people who travel a lot via planes.
- Excessive buildup of ear wax
- Sinus infection
- Dental pain – temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) affects the optimal functionality of the joint connecting the jaw to the skull.
- Diseased tooth – although uncommon, dental decay and impacted teeth can sometimes lead to earaches.
- Concussions and other head injuries
Common Symptoms for Identifying Earaches
Ear pains cause significant discomfort, enough to disrupt everyday life. The stakes are higher if the cause of your pain is a severe health problem. Some of the known symptoms that can help you realize that you are indeed having an earache are:
- Draining fluids or discharge from your ears – it could be clear or discolored with streaks of blood.
- Pain and discomfort in and around your ears.
- A sense of fullness in your ear
- Inability to hear well can result in hearing loss, sometimes temporarily or permanently.
- Loss of balance
Leaving ear infections untreated can have severe consequences on your health. Some people have incurred a permanent loss of hearing, as others succumbed to significant health problems of the brain for leaving ear infections untreated. Fortunately, not all cases of ear pain require urgent care in San Antonio. You can master a few tips that can help you treat an ear infection in adults or children in your family, at the comfort of your home. Some of them are:
- Chewing gum – surprisingly, chewing can help relieve ear pressure and the feeling of fullness that you may have.
- Sit up – it will also relieve the pressure built up in your ear canal.
- Use ear drops – you can easily get an over-the-counter prescription without visiting a clinic for urgent care in Marbach.
Aside from managing ear pain at home, consider visiting a doctor for severe infections. Treatments will include:
- Wax-softening eardrops – when your ear doctor determines that wax buildup is the cause of your pain, they will prescribe ear drops to soften the wax and make it easy to clean.
- Removing ear wax using ear lavage – while at the doctor’s office, they may opt to help rid your ears of excessive wax before you leave.
- Treating underlying health problems – whether oral or respiratory illnesses and infections that directly impact your ear canal.
- Oral antibiotics – to treat the bacterial infection.
- Pain medication – to alleviate throat and ear pain related to the ear infection.