It is common for children to get ear infections, especially otitis media (middle ear infection). About 3 out of 4 children have experienced otitis media by the time they are 3 years old, however adults are less likely to experience this specific type of ear infection.

 

What Is Otitis media?

Otitis media is inflammation or infection located in the middle part of the ear. This infection causes the middle ear to be filled with fluid and to become inflamed. This can occur for various reasons including but not limited to a cold, respiratory infection, or a sore throat. This type of infection is usually painful and can cause fever. It is also important not to ignore this infection because the infection can spread to other areas near the head.

 

Different Types:

There are different types of middle ear infection that a child can be diagnosed with.

  • Acute otitis media: This is the initial form of an ear infection. The infection occurs abruptly causing fluid and mucus to become trapped inside the ear. This infection can cause swelling, redness, ear pain, and a fever.
  • Otitis media with effusion: After the initial infection subsides, fluid and mucus continue to accumulate in the middle ear. This infection can cause a feeling of fullness in the ear and can have no symptoms or affect hearing.
  • Chronic otitis media with effusion: There is no infection and yet fluid remains in the middle ear for a prolonged period or fluid keeps returning in the middle ear.

It is important to have ear infections looked at by an ENT specialist, like Dr. Russell at National Allergy & ENT. An ENT specialist can help with the diagnosis an ear infection and will create a treatment plan that best suits the situation. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Russell call (843) 576-3302 or schedule an appointment online.