Ear infections can occur in the external, middle or inner ear. Even thought they are normally thought of as problems that typically affect children, they can strike at any age. Here is some information as to how they occur, and how the professionals at McKinney ENT Clinic treat them.
External Ear Infections, or Otitis Externa
Infections of the ear canal are frequently referred to as “swimmer’s ear.” They typically occur due to water or moisture being trapped in the ear canal, which leads to growth of bacteria or fungal organisms. These outer ear infections occur more frequently during the summer months when most people participate in water activities, but they can also frequent patients who have eczema (flakiness of skin) and those with excessive wax build up.
If you have the sensation that your ear is full or clogged, you experience intense pain in the ear radiating to the neck or side of the head or you have drainage, you need to be checked for swimmer’s ear as soon as possible. At McKinney ENT Clinic, we can perform a thorough exam under the microscope and recommend appropriate treatment. Careful cleaning of the ear is almost always necessary. Sometimes a small sponge or wick is placed to facilitate delivery of ear drops to the infected site.
Middle Ear Infections, or Otitis Media
If you are a parent of a small child, you are probably very familiar with this ear condition. Otitis media is so common in fact, that nine out of 10 children will experience this type of infection by the time they turn 3. It usually develops after a viral or bacterial upper respiratory infection, which can trigger swelling of the EUSTACHIAN TUBE opening. This, in turn, can result in the accumulation of fluid in the space behind the ear drum (the MIDDLE EAR). Fever, ear pain, hearing loss and decreased appetite and sleep can occur.
At McKinney ENT, we provide safe, effective treatment for middle ear infections. This normally involves using antibiotics, but in more severe cases, a procedure may be necessary to drain fluid from the middle ear.
Inner Ear Infections
Infections of the inner ear are the least common and usually present with imbalance or dizziness. Vertigo can be severe with nausea and vomiting, and sometimes it is accompanied by hearing loss or tinnitus (ringing in the ears). If you experience severe dizziness and your other doctors have eliminated other possible causes like heart disease or neurological disorders, you may benefit from a consultation with McKinney ENT Clinic.
Contact Us About Ear Infections
At McKinney ENT, we provide safe, effective treatment for ear infections. This normally involves using antibiotics, but in severe cases a procedure may be necessary to drain fluid from the eardrum. If you or a loved one is suffering from this condition, get in touch with us right away. Call our Plano or Frisco clinic at (214) 383-5955 for an appointment.