Ever notice that one ear infection leads to another, which leads to another - is there a way to prevent it?
Ear Infection Averages
Who can get an ear infection? Anyone. Who most commonly gets ear infections? Children between the ages 6 - 24 months old. Do you know someone with or that had an ear infection? Most likely. Just because something is common it does not mean that it is normal.
According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), 5 out of 6 children will have at least one ear infection by their third birthday.
While there may be controversy and many opinions on ways to treat an ear infection, we take the stance from a natural, preventative treatment.
What is an ear infection…
So what exactly is an ear infection? Well, the scientific name is Otitis Media (OM). The ear infection occurs when fluid builds up behind the eardrum, in the middle ear, causing inflammation. A bacterial or viral infection of this fluid usually is what produces the pesky symptoms of an ear infection.
Children are more prone to ear infections due to their immature Eustachian tube (part of the middle ear). In early childhood the tube is shorter and angled, which allows fluid to build up easier. Colds, flu and allergies can cause an ear infection due to the congestion/swelling of nasal passages, throat and Eustachian tubes.
Chiropractic & Ear Infections
So now we know a little more about ear infections, how does chiropractic help? During labor, delivery, and development, the bones in the spine can shift out of alignment. These shifts may be subtle or significant; however, the impact is the same - it disrupts communication from brain to body.
Nerves travel to every muscle, cell, tissue, and organ in the body and coordinate every function. When the nerves that supply function to the ears are experiencing interference it can slow, halt or even reverse the drainage of the middle ear, turning the Eustachian tubes into a convenient place for bacteria to colonize. When these interferences are corrected through chiropractic adjustments, patients begin to see symptoms go away naturally.
Although ear infections can pass on their own over time as your child’s immune system fights the infection, chiropractic adjustments can also help with the drainage - naturally, no antibiotics or medications needed. Chiropractic also helps to boost the immune system, which allows your child a stronger chance to fight off the infection.
Please visit the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association and read how chiropractic has helped hundreds of children suffering from ear infections. Click this link to find research and case studies on ear infections and chiropractic!
Other Ways to PREVENT Ear Infections
Breastfeeding. If you are able, breastfeed your child exclusively until 6 months and at least up to 12 months of age.
Keep foreign objects out of ear. Yes, this includes things like Q-tips. When foreign objects enter the ear, it can bruise or cut the ear, leaving it susceptible to an infection.
Avoid smoking/exposure to second hand smoke. Cigarette smoking around a child leaves them susceptible to getting more colds and ear infections.