Book an Appointment

Chronic Ear Infections (Otitis Media) in Children

children's health Dec 10, 2014

Chronic, recurrent ear infections are a common condition in young children. This is due to various factors. The main factor is the structural shape of a young child’s ear canal. The canal is shorter in young children and the shape of the eustacean tube straighter than in adults, making a child more prone to infections. Secondly, their immune system is still developing, so often young children get more upper respiratory infections than adults. Ear infections are also more common while a child is teething. Thirdly, 97% of ear infections can trace their original origin to allergies, either environmental or food.

Traditional allopathic medicine has 2 main ways of treating ear infections: antibiotics and tube insertion for drainage. This approach does not really address the cause, and chronic antibiotic use can cause further problems in a child’s longterm health. The child’s diet must be addressed if there is to be an impact in the frequency and duration of the ear infections. Cow dairy and grains (especially glutinous grains) seem to be the primary culprits as well as too much sugar consumption, but IgG food allergy testing is often the best route to take.

I often see children after they have had multiple ear infections and are on yet another round of antibiotics. I also tend to see recurrent ear infections as a chronic condition rather than an acute crisis (though it certainly does feel like a crisis when your child wakes you up at night feverish, screaming, and pulling their ear.)  Homeopathic remedies are often magical to have on hand at home for these acute situations.  But often immune support, allergy treatment, and diet changes can solve the real problem, and the child can avoid further rounds of antibiotics and tubes.