Being an inflammatory condition that affects the ear canal, otitis is a common disease among children that are under 5 years old. It mostly occurs in people who are often prone to allergies or respiratory tract infections. The dominant form is the earache, the baby’s ear hurts but the parents can hardly detect the disease if not for the child’s behaviour. Yet the image we could take is that “otitis is the equivalent of a toothache in the ear”. There are several types of otitis but the most common form is acute otitis media (AOM).
In the case of acute otitis media, the middle ear and the Eustachian tube are infected. When this duct is clogged, painful pressure is applied on the eardrum, causing it to bulge and, in the worst of cases, rupture In general, there are manifestations of fever and the child’s temperature may rise up to 38.5 ° to 40 ° C. Sometimes, the child is subject to weight loss since there is a loss of appetite and it is not uncommon for digestive disorders to occur. In addition, the affected child may be subject to seizures, on top of which he or she is often dehydrated. The tell-tale sign indicating the presence of AOM is that the child frequently touches his or her ear. Brutal and violent pain affects the diseased ear, from which blood and pus start to drain out. Thus, the child may have trouble hearing, and may also suffer from a sore throat and headaches. The germs known to be responsible for AOM are bacteria that have developed a certain degree of resistance to antibiotics and include, among others, Haemophilus influenzae and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Bullous myringitis has the distinction of being much more painful than acute otitis media. It occurs in short outbreaks. An examination carried out early on, that is to say before the eardrum’s rupture, shows bubbles that are streaked with blood. In these effusions, one can find the same bacteria as those responsible for acute otitis media. Note that the fever subsides once the eardrum ruptures and the effusion appears.
In regard to secretory otitis media, its onset is generally favoured by repeated infections that affect the throat, nose and eyes, as well as iron deficiency. Furthermore, one cannot ignore parental smoking, as it generates an environment conducive to allergies. The secretions accumulate in the middle ear but the absence of acute superinfection does not cause the child to feel pain or be subject to fever. Nonetheless, the affected youngster suffers from hearing disorders, which can in turn lead to language acquisition difficulties. The medical examination shows bubbles on the eardrum, which loses its transparency and mobility. The most visible effect is thick and sticky mucus that accumulates behind the eardrum.
Chronic suppurative otitis media involves a perforation in the tympanic membrane and active bacterial infection within the middle ear space for several weeks or more. The child feels a sharp pain especially when the pinna is touched. But it is also possible for the ear to release foul odours, all the while sparing the child pain and fever. In certain cases, chronic suppurative otitis media is sometimes confused with acute otitis media or secretory otitis media.
If the ear infection is a disease that mainly affects children, it is because their immune system has not yet reached maturity and their Eustachian tube is shorter and more permeable than that of adults. To this, one can add the frequency of colds or hypertrophy of abnormal excrescences, which both constitute environments that are conducive to the spread of infections
The most noticeable symptom is ear pain. However, given that the disease occurs when the child is not yet able to speak, the parents need to take other signs into consideration. Among these, consider the loss of hearing, as well as a runny nose, cough or fever. Furthermore, the child is irritable, cries a lot, often touches his or her ear, loses his or her appetite and has trouble sleeping. If the youngster is able to speak, he or she often complains of a stuffy nose, a sensation of plugged ears and tiredness. Sometimes, the child feels itching inside the ear and the ear hurts when swallowing.
Pending a doctor’s appointment, one can already take Belladonna 9 CH, Ferrum phosphoricum 9 CH and Capsicum annuum 9 CH. One needs to take three granules every hour, taking care to alternate between the above-cited remedies, all of which prove to be especially effective when, in addition to a congested ear, the patient suffers from a sudden onset of fever. In the case of suppuration, the affected person may also take 3 granules of Arsenicum album 9 CH, Pyorogenium 9 CH and Mercurius solubilis 9 CH three times a day. In the case of acute otitis media, the recommended anti-inflammatory remedies and painkillers are Belladonna and Arsenicum album, both in 9-CH dilution and of which 5 granules need to be taken two to three times a day. In addition to the antibiotics prescribed by a doctor, one may also take five granules of Mercurius, Hepar sulfur, Capsicum 9 CH or Pyrogenium several times a day. Mercurius is used when the pain affecting the throat and causes a feeling of thirst or when yellow, and sometimes bloody, nasal mucus appears. When the pain occurs at night or after a cold snap, Aconitum napellus 9 CH is generally indicated.
When the heat from the surrounding environment alleviates the pain, Arsenicum album 9 CH is recommended. As for Belladonna 9 CH, it can be administered to relieve throbbing pain. When the pain is difficult to define, Capsicum annum 5 CH is recommended. Chamomilla vulgaris 15 CH alleviates unbearable pain. In the presence of mild fever, between 38 and 38.5 ° C, take Ferrum phosphoricum 9 CH, but do not exceed four intakes in 24 hours. After the medical examination, there are two possible solutions: the doctor may recommend Manganum metallicum 9 CH or Manganum aceticum 9 CH or if the eardrum’s examination with an otoscope results in a coughing fit. The second solution involves taking Phytolacca decandra 9 CH when the eardrum is not inflammed and when the pain in the ear is worsened by swallowing.
To treat acute otitis media while awaiting a medical consultation, immediately take a dose of Lachesis mutus 9 CH to relieve pain. For an ongoing treatment, take 5 granules of Arsenicum album 9 CH, Belladonna 9 CH, Capsicum annuum 5 CH, Chamomilla vulgaris 15 CH, Ferrum phosphoricum 9 CH every half hour. When otitis leads to complications of nasopharyngitis, it is advisable to take a daily dose of Hepar sulfuris calcareum 30 CH and Pyrogenium 9 CH during 3 days. If recurrent otitis is diagnosed, take a dose of Avian 9 CH in the early stages of treatment.
For bullous myringitis, it is recommended to take 5 granules of Cantharis vesicatoria 9 CH every half hour, before progressively reducing the dosage as the patient’s condition improves. In case of secretory otitis media, take one to four daily intakes of Kalium muriaticum 9 CH, depending on the symptoms’ severity, and keeping in mind that a dose consists of 5 granules. In case of chronic suppurative otitis media, five granules of Mercurius solubilis15 CH and a dose of Avian 9 CH can be taken every two hours, pending the medical examination. For a disease-modifying treatment of otitis, one primarily resorts to Manganum 5 CH, Ferum phosphoricum 5 CH, and Kalium muriaticum 5 or 7 CH, in addition to which a child’s rhinitis must be systematically treated. To do this, clean the nose with a physiological saline solution and, most importantly, teach the child to blow its nose on a regular basis.
Consulting a physician is necessary when the child has fever and complains or shows signs indicating an earache. Sometimes the pain makes the youngster irritable and causes him or her to refuse to eat. If the child is still unable to speak and cries constantly, it is best to consult a paediatrician who will able to identify the ailment. Hearing loss is a problem that must absolutely be submitted to the doctor’s advice, much like cases of breathing difficulties, purple spots on the skin or vomiting.
• Aconitum Napellus
• Arsenicum Album
• Aurum Muriaticum
• Calcarea Carbonica Ostrearum
• Calcarea Phosphorica
• Cantharis Vesicatoria
• Capsicum Anuum
• Chamomilla Vulgaris
• Ferrum Phosphoricum
• Hepar Sulfuris Calcareum
• Kalium Muriaticum
• Lachesis Mutus
• Manganum Aceticum
• Manganum Metallicum
• Mercurius Solubilis
• Phytolacca Decandra
• Siegesbeckia Orientalis
• Thuya Occidentalis
Good to know: Confusing otitis and a throat infection can lead you to follow a treatment that would not adequately cure the pathology. Among the indicated homoeopathic remedies, Capsicum is recommended to treat an ear ache that spreads to the mastoid.