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Earache (cont.)

What natural or home remedies soothe and provide earache pain relief?

Earaches may often be treated at home. The goal is to decrease inflammation and pain.

  1. Warm compresses held to the outside of the ear may help with some of the pain. Make certain that water does not get into the ear canal. As well, it is important not to burn the skin.
  2. Alternatively, a cool compress may help if warmth does not. Holding a cool compress for 20 minutes at a time against the ear may be helpful. Be careful to not have it too cold to cause frostbite.
  3. Over-the-counter pain medications may be helpful. These include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve) and acetaminophen (Tylenol, Panadol). It is important to remember that over-the-counter medications may interact with prescription drugs and may also have side effects. Always check with a health-care professional or pharmacist if needed. As well, in infants and children, these medications are dosed based upon weight.
  4. Ibuprofen and acetaminophen may also be used for fever control.
  5. Keep well hydrated and drink plenty of fluid.
  6. Humidity may help sinuses and ears drain. It is important to be careful when using steam or hot water, especially around infants and children, to prevent scald burns.
  7. Olive oil may be helpful for pain. A few drops in the ear canal may be soothing.
  8. Other over-the-counter ear drops may also be helpful in decreasing pain
  9. Herbal oils may be of use in helping with pain. A pharmacist or herbalist may be able to suggest specific herbal products.
  10. Chewing or yawning may be helpful in easing pressure within the middle ear. Sometimes one can feel or hear popping sounds, like rice krispies, as the Eustachian tubes open and close to try to equalize pressure.
  11. When flying, sucking on candy or having an infant feed on a bottle during take-off and landing may help as the plane changes altitude quickly
  12. If the ear fullness is due to sinus pain, in addition to humidity, oxymetazoline (Afrin) nasal spray may be helpful (but should only be used for a maximum of three days). Salt water nasal spray may be used for a longer duration and more frequently.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/23/2016

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