It’s extremely common for babies and young children to experience middle ear infections, known medically as otitis media. In fact, according to one 2019 review, “Acute otitis media (AOM) is the most common diagnosis in childhood acute sick visits. By three years of age, 50% to 85% of children will have at least one episode of AOM.”
If you have a very young child, they, unfortunately, won’t be able to tell you if they’re experiencing ear pain or any other symptoms of an ear infection. This post reviews how to know if your baby has an ear infection.
They’re Tugging on Their Ears
One of the hallmark symptoms of an ear infection in young children is them tugging on their ears, as this can help alleviate pain. If your baby is very young, they may hit their ears with their hands if they lack the motor skills to grab onto them.
They Have Trouble Sleeping
With an ear infection, lying down can cause pressure to shift in the middle ear, causing discomfort or pain. If your baby resists lying down or has trouble sleeping, this could be a sign of an ear infection.
They Have Ear Drainage
If fluid drains from your baby’s ears, this is almost a sure sign of an ear infection. If the liquid is thick, yellow, or bloody, this could be a sign that the infection has caused their eardrum to rupture. It’s important to bring them to an expert at Arizona Desert Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists right away if you notice this. The ENT physician may prescribe antibiotics that you can pick up at Key Pharmacy on North Estrella Parkway.
They Are Crying or Fussy
When your baby has ear pain or discomfort, this will likely cause them to cry more or be fussier than usual.
They Seem to Have Trouble Hearing
You may notice your baby not responding to their name or startling at loud noises like they usually do, as fluid in the ear can cause temporary conductive hearing loss.
They Have a Fever
While many conditions can cause a fever, if they are feverish in conjunction with any of the above-listed symptoms, this is a sign they could have an ear infection.
To learn more about ear infections or to schedule an appointment with an expert ENT physician, call Arizona Desert Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists today.