Ear Infections Need Advice

Updated on December 01, 2010
L.R. asks from Apache Junction, AZ
18 answers

Hi Moms,

Need some advice. My son is 8 years old. Whenever he gets bronchitis it goes into his ears, and we end up antibiotics.
Usually it is once a year, however this year he was on them in January, and this october...The amoxicillan didn't really work
that well, and everyone in his class got sick and BAHM he got it ten fold 2 weeks ago.
I was determined to keep him off them this time. We juiced, took garlic, got off milk, ate correctly..and the bronchitis went
away/cough stopped. Yesterday, we went to the local doctor to check and see how his ears were progressing. She said there is no infection, however they are very red and very swollen. Since yesterday, his ears have been unplugged and he can hear again.
we just got antibiotics. My question is: Go ahead with the Augmentin...Or keep on my regime?
I also bought some probiotics and yoghurt...to go along with antibiotics....
I don't want to risk hurting his ears~ At the same time...I don't want to keep giving him antibiotics without giving his body a
chance to heal.
After he is healed, I will be doing holistic preventative and some light accupressure to help his tubes.................

What does one do? They say stay OFF antibiotics..however, how can we gauge how bad it is??
I am confused and frustrated. THX!

So..give him the antibiotics or NOT? (he has no fever, no bad pain, no draining)

I wished i had an otoscope and knew what to look for~But, I can't afford to keep going back to the doctor for her
to just check his ears each time.

What can I do next?

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answers from Tulsa on

I am rather opinionated about ear infections but you asked...lol.

My 1 year old grandson was deaf. The ENT decided to go in and put tubes in to see if it helped with any hearing at all. The hearing test had shown no hearing for any tones. When the doc got inside he spent most of the time clearing debris from ear infections that the antibiotics had not touched because they had not been given long enough or something. he could not imagine that the antibiotics would leave this kind of mess.

Once the doc cleaned out the canals my grandson can hear. So I am pro antibiotics for even extended time. If the ear infection is not cleared up then damage is happening inside the ear canal and it might be life long if left untreated.

When bronchitis happens the goo has to exit the body somewhere, the eyes, the ears, the throat, etc....so if it chooses the ears then the ears, along with Sudafed and other meds can really make the goo thinner and easier to get rid of.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Barnstable on

My daughter used to get terrible sore throats and ear infections all the time. Finally, we had her tonsils out at 8 years old. Best thing we ever did. They were loaded with nasty bacteria and terribly damaged. Since then (she is now 10) she rarely, RARELY gets a sore throat and NEVER gets an ear infection.

Many kids that need their tonsils out have chronic ear infections. The tonsils are so inflamed that the fluid backs up into the ear and they get an infection.

I would take him to an ENT (pediatric Ear Nose Throat) and have his tonsils looked at.

best of luck!

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answers from Houston on

Nix the antibiotics and add a chiropractor to your regime. Most docs are going against antibiotics for ear infections these days anyway. Google and you will find a lot of information on this.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

My (almost 8 year old) son suffers from ear infections too and my doctor told me that antibiotics are not necessary for them. They will help clear them up quicker but are not necessary. He did give me one bit of advice to help prevent them. When my son has a cold he told him to block one nostril to blow his nose, so blow one nostril while holding the other one closed with his finger, and then do the other side. When you blow your nose with both nostrils "open" the mucus can actually be blown back up the nose and go into the ear canal and sinuses causing infections of either or both. Since then I always remind him when he gets a cold to blow one side at a time, it does seem to have helped as he hasn't had an ear infection with either of the last couple of colds he got.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

Had this same issue with my youngest son a few years ago. When the endless cycle of antibiotics no longer worked then the answer was surgery, putting tubes in his ears! I ended up saying no to both and got a great pedi chiropractor instead. Glad that I did. After getting proactive with his care and realizing most "infections" are just fluid built up in the ears. This fluid can take months to resolve, meanwhile doctors are treating it as an infection and the antibiotic cycle continues. The chiropractor would check his ears for me at any time without cost to me to let me know how things look. Ended up using some allergy meds and some decongestant to clear the fluid and pressure out. Resolved in a month! Honest, you should search the web about over use of antibiotics with ear infections. You'll be amazed at the stories just like yours. Some say it's best to just let them fight through the infection (this is what I did) and let it resolve on it's on while supporting the immune system with vitamins and herbs. The theory behind the antibiotic cycle is that the infection is never totally clear and a stronger or different antibiotic is needed while the initial infection is getting stronger as well with each additional cycle.
Sorry to be so long winded. I feel your pain and I'm sorry because it's very frustrating to watch you son be sick and the doctor visits can seem endless.
Best Regards,

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

This seems wacky. No infection but antibiotics prescribed anyway? Call the doctor/nurse line back and have them check the notes again. If it really is an infection, don't feel bad about using the antibiotics. If he was getting antibiotics every other month or if you weren't making sure he finished the entire prescription (this is actually the BIGGEST culprit that creates antibiotic inefficacy), then I would say hold off.

And yes, in Europe, ear infections do not routinely get treated with antibiotics. And this was a trend moving thru US medical circles when we had our first (about 10 yrs ago). They have since found a middle ground. And isn't moderation a wonderful thing?

An occasional ear infection is not a problem. Occasionally opting to treat only the pain and not the infection is also not a problem. Especially at 8 when he can let you know when the pain has crossed a threshold. But for any child (or adult for that matter) who has chronic uber painful ear infections (and twice a yr doesn't qualify), treatment is really necessary. My dad was one of those kids. He has had so many ear infections..So many severe ones that when he gets head MRIs for post-stroke management, they can see the pitted bones in his ears where the infections progressively ate away. He has been wearing hearing aids since he was 40!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

Hmmmm....what about do the antibiotics this time and keep with your regimen and maybe you'll ward off future infections?

Also (and I have an almost 8 yo boy, so I would do this VERY cautiously) but have you ever looked into ear candling? My husband (albeit NOT 8 years old!) used to get ear infection after ear infection and we started candling his ears regularly and he hasn't had an ear infection for YEARS. Again--this is a child we're talking about and only you know whether he would be cooperative. It's not painful, but does involve a flame...

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answers from Phoenix on

Just wait it out, it looks like you are doing all the right things. My daughter had ear problems a lot when she was young and I never gave her anti biotics, it always cleared up. Also look at emotional causes that can be behind it. Sometimes there are things kids don't want to hear, if he is a sentive child that could be going on.
Trust you are making the right decision, whatever decision you make.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Colorado Springs on

If the doctor said he does not have an infection, then he doesn't need the antibiotics. Most doctors just give out antibiotics because parents (in general, not you) demand them. The less you have them in his system, the better off he will be. You might also consider going to a chiropractor for an adjustment. If he is having trouble draining his ears (which causes the infection), an adjustment is usually all that is needed. I am very impressed with your course of action. It sounds like you are very well versed on how to treat your son. Most of my children have never had antibiotics ever. We have never needed them. I haven't had them in at least 10 years. Natural methods really do work well. Blessings!

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answers from Pittsburgh on

I wouldn't give them to him since the doctor told you that there was no infection...not sure why she would turn around and prescribe after this??? I have read that antibiotics are WAY overused for ear infections and that most of the time they clear by themselves. Wait a couple of days and if it is not better THEN fill the prescription.

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answers from Phoenix on

Here's a home remedy for ear infections that has worked every time for my 3 kids. I take 2 garlic cloves and heat them in a couple of tbsp virgin olive oil in the microwave. I then let it cool to a tepid temperature and put a couple of drops in my kids' ears every few hours. I'm pretty sure stores like Sprouts sell a holistic remedy like this too. I would think you could maybe even do it preventatively once it clears up. Good Luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Anchorage on

In the UK antibiotics are only given if an infection will not clear up on its own, but here we turn to it for every pain. An ear infection is caused when congestion will not allow the ears to drain, clear the congestion and the infection will usually go away on its own. If he is not in severe pain I would hold off and see if it clears on its own.

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answers from Seattle on

I don't have an answer as to whether or not to take the antibiotics, but chiropractic care worked for my daughter and tons of other kids I know!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Tucson on

This happened to me last year. I'm 31 not 8 , but i get sick a couple times a year with earaches, tonsilitis, strep, or bronchitis. I've been told to get my tonsils out. Anyways, I didnt take antibiotics when i had earache last year because i was breast feeding, but my ears got worse and i lost my hearing for 2 weeks. Needless to say i took the antibiotics and got better. I say give them to him.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

I would see an ENT. My son had chronic ear infections that we didn't know about and we had his adenoids out and tubes put in. The problem with just letting the fluid build up drain is that it really does hurt their hearing. This summer the tubes fell out and he had repeated infections. He was on oral antibiotics that didn't help. The ENT explained that many ear infections only respond to antibiotic ear drops. He didn't respond to the first round of drops and then we finally figured out that he had a a fungal yeast like infection. A different round of drops cleared it up and we have been fine since. I don't think I would risk hurting his ears by avoiding the antibiotics, but I do think I would see a doctor that can figure out the cause and the type of medication that is needed to cure it. I would also have his adenoids checked out.

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answers from Boise on

Have you tried warming white vinegar and placing a few drops in his ears? I just tried this on my daughter at midnight last night. She was already on antibiotics and ibuprofen and numbing prescription ear drops and was screaming in pain. I stumbled to the computer and found a home remedy website, tried their suggestion and her pain went away. My doctor said lots of ear infections go away on their own. Have you talked to a chiropractor to see if maybe he is out of alignment and that is why he gets getting infections?

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answers from Chicago on

I used Miracle Mineral Solution on my own ear infection (doctor had confirmed it and prescribed me antibiotics). The pain went away in about 4 hours and it never returned. The infection was gone by the next day.

MMS is hard to come by nowadays with the FDA getting all involved. But google it and check it out for yourself. I bought mine for $20 for a year's supply. Message me and I can get you more info after you research it for yourself (I never tell anyone to just buy something, I think one should do their own research first).

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answers from New York on

yes, give the antibiotic. you don't want to risk complications re: hearing

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