If you or your child has been stricken with an ear infection, you know all too well the discomfort it can bring. If you are interested in treating the infection, and soothing symptoms through natural means, there are several strategies at your disposal.
Here are just a few that are worth trying.
While you might think of garlic as a way to add a bit of zest to your cooking, this herb is one of the most powerful natural healers out there. Research has found it contains compounds that are significantly more effective at killing various types of bacterial strains, when compared to antibiotics; it also has potent antiviral properties, so regardless of the nature of the infection, garlic has you covered.
When crushed or cut up, garlic releases compounds that form a substance called allicin, whose anesthetic properties may provide some degree of relief from the pain of an ear infection. Garlic oil is extremely easy to make. You need one clove and ¼ cup of oil. Chop up the garlic, and warm up the oil. Combine the two into a small container, and let it sit for at least a day; but, if you need it quickly, it should be good to go in about three hours.
Take a dropper and place two to three drops in the ear and keep your head in position for at least 30 seconds to allow it to travel all the way down the ear canal. You can use it every hour—aim for at least four to six times a day.
Essential oils have been used to promote healing for a variety of conditions, including ear infections. Massaging the outer ear and the surrounding areas of the face may help ease inflammation, and promote excess fluid drainage. For optimal effectiveness, massage downward behind the ears, down to the neck. You also want to apply some pressure specifically to the front of the ear, right around the cheek area where sideburns would be.
You need to mix the essential oils with a ‘carrier’ oil, such as olive or sesame. Specific oils suggested for the purpose of treating an ear infection include oregano, lavender, rosemary, tea tree, chamomile, thyme and eucalyptus.
Fermented Cod Liver Oil
This natural treatment may be a bit hard to swallow, but may really speed up healing of the infection. Insufficient intake of vitamin A may interfere with the ear’s ability to clear out fluids and other substance that may contribute to infection. While our body uses beta-carotene—found in a variety of foods—to manufacture vitamin A, the true form of this vitamin is only found in animal products. Cod liver oil is one of the richest sources.
Chiropractic treatment may be a powerful ally in fighting an ear infection. If the muscles and bones near the lymph nodes in your head—which help flush out fluids and unblock congestion in the ear area—are restricted in any way, the nodes can do their job properly. The chiropractor can perform adjustments in this area to get everything flowing smoothly again.
The power of heat in healing various health issues is great. When it comes to an ear infection, a nice hot compress will not only soothe discomfort, it will increase blood flow to the area. Increased blood flow makes it easier for the immune cells to travel to the infected area, and do their magic.
Kelli Cooper, writing for Total Hearing Care, enjoys sharing tips about all things health.