Posted on Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Middle Ear Infection Symptoms

middle ear infection symptoms are more common in children like this young boy.

Middle ear infections can cause extreme pain and discomfort. These problems are more common in children and Native Americans. In addition to the pain of middle ear infections there may be hearing loss that can be temporary, if treated, but may become permanent if left untreated. Symptoms of middle ear infections range from mild to severe.

Otitis Media
A build up of fluid in the middle ear due to bacteria or other conditions like sinus problems is common and can result in an inability to regulate the pressure in the middle ear, leading to inflammation and ear infections. Ear pain, sore throat, headache, clicking, and hearing loss can all be signs of a middle ear infection, but there are other symptoms to be aware of.

Middle Ear Infections Symptoms

Pain in ear that worsens when napping or lying down

Rubbing, pulling, yanking at ear in agitation or obvious discomfort (More common in children)

Irritability, crying, inability to sleep, and lack of interest in food (More common in children)

Head pain or headache

Fever (More common in children)

Vertigo, balance problems, or unexpected falls

Hearing loss

Fluid drainage from ear

In addition to infections, there are other conditions that can cause issues with the middle ear. Below is a list of common middle ear conditions that could cause problems with hearing and balance.

Other Middle Ear Problems

Acoustic Neuroma
A benign tumor of the nerve that connects the ear to the brain. Feeling of fullness of the clogged ear sensation could be a sign of this condition, so don't delay in seeking professional help.

Meniere's Disease
Meniere’s disease is a disorder of the inner ear that can leave people afflicted with the disease battling vertigo so severe it can even leave them wheelchair bound. Meniere’s disease is a mysterious condition that has varying degrees of serious and physically draining symptoms.

Tinnitus is a noise, like the clicking sound associated with otitis media, that seems to originate in the ear or head that is usually an indication of some damage to your auditory system. It can be constant or periodic, and seem to come from specific sides of your head (as in left, right, center, etc.).

Otosclerosis is a condition in which the formation of bone, usually within the middle ear, causes hearing loss. It's not fully understood why this bone growth happens, but factors like pregnancy, virus, and genetics are thought to contribute to its likelihood. Surgeries for otosclerosis varies and can depend on the severity of the condition and other underlying problems.

It is important to having hearing problems associated with an earache evaluated in order to rule out more severe causes of the middle ear and especially in children to treat the symptoms before hearing loss becomes permanent or begins to interfere with learning and development. If you'd like to learn more, see your hearing health provider. If you need help finding a hearing health provider click HERE to be connected with the largest network of trusted hearing health professionals in the nation!

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