As per an NIH research report (National Institute of Health), 75% of children suffer from one ear infection or the other by only three years of age. Even though these diseases are quite common among children, adults are also susceptible to them. In children, ear infections are usually minor, and they recover quickly, but in adults, ear infections can indicate an underlying disorder or serious health issue. At MD Urgent Care, we diagnose and provide treatment for all kinds of ear infections.
Types and Symptoms of Ear Infections
We have three critical types of ear infections. You can categorize them based on where they happen in 3 areas of our ears: outer, middle, and inner ear.
Middle Ear Infection
A respiratory infection or a cold is usually the cause of your middle ear infection. This infection usually shifts from your respiratory system to your ear via eustachian tubes. The eustachian lines are responsible for regulating air pressure inside your ear and are linked to your throat and nose.
If someone suffers from a middle ear infection, it can irritate his eustachian tubes as well. It may lead to swelling of those tubes leading to a problem of improper drainage for these tubes. The fluid starts building up against the eardrum as there is no outlet. Ultimately, it leads to a feeling of fullness inside your ear, along with other symptoms.
Outer Ear Infection
Outer ear infections, or swimmer’s ear, usually happen because of trapped water in your ear, especially after taking a bath or completing a swimming session. The trapped water generates sufficient moisture creating an ideal environment for bacteria to grow fast. If you scratch your ears or develop some irritation in the ear’s outer lining, a bacterial infection occurs. Ear Irritation can also occur if you insert a finger or some foreign object into the ear.
Inner Ear Infection
Sometimes, doctors misdiagnose swelling in the inner part of your ears as an inner ear infection. An inner ear infection includes symptoms like ear pain, dizziness, vomiting, or nausea.
Please note that persistent issues in the inner ear can also indicate a severe health condition like Meningitis.
The main reason for any ear infection is the presence of bacteria. Getting a middle or outer ear infection depends upon the causes of your condition.
An ear infection can also resolve automatically within a few days. If the pain stays longer and you start getting a fever, we suggest that you should consult an ENT doctor at the earliest possible. Besides, if you feel hearing issues or if the fluid starts draining from your ears, you should immediately seek medical help.
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