Middle ear infections are seen with the physical presence of middle ear inflammation and symptoms like fever and ear pain. Middle ear infections typically arise as a secondary complication to the common cold. It’s believed that the Eustachian tube which connects the middle ear to the back of your throat dysfunctions during an acute upper respiratory infection and infection settles in the middle ear. The infection grows and pushes on the ear drum causing pain. Doctors treat middle ear infections with antibiotics and a numbing medication such as ibuprofen and/or numbing ear drops. Risk factors for middle ear infections include age (higher risk the younger you are), allergies, smoke exposure, anatomy of the head, contacts at day care, family history of ear infections, acid reflux, pacifier use, upper respiratory infections, no breastfeeding, and low immune system.
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