Find Safe Home Remedies for Earache

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Causes of Earaches:

Earaches are sometimes caused by water getting into the ears. If this is the case, it is best to shake your head vigorously while holding the ear downwards and firmly massaging the area beneath the ear.

Earaches often accompany severe colds and sore throats and are aggravated mostly in the night time. When a congested Eustachian tube that connects the back of the throat to the eardrum fails to regulate the pressure or fluids in the ear, an earache can occur. The pain begins when there is infection behind the eardrum and increases with the severity of the infection. The following are safe home remedies for earache pain.

Application of warmth:

Applying warmth to the area can provide instantaneous relief from earaches. There are a wide variety of home remedies based on this concept.

You can heat a little bit of salt, roll it in cloth and then place it in a sock to rest your aching ear upon or you can use hot poultices of onions, figs or hollyhocks (depending on the region where you live).

Warmth may be applied by pressing a towel rung out in hot water against your ear. The towel may be used several times by resoaking it in hot water as often as needed. Alternatively, a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel can be used as a pillow for an aching ear. If the earaches are frequent, it is advisable to get a portable mini hot water bottle that fits the ear well. A dual-purpose first-aid gel pack that can be either warmed up in hot water or microwave can also create a therapeutic warming effect. However, care must be taken to ensure that the gel pack is not too hot. A very old therapy for earache is to warm an oven safe plate, wrap it in a towel, and place your ear on it.

A few drops of warm mineral oil can relieve a sore ear. The oil must be warmed by placing it in hot water. Before dripping it into the ear with an eyedropper, test a small amount on your wrist to make sure it is not too hot. This method may not be used if the eardrum is perforated.

Mix 1 teaspoon each of witch hazel and glycerin, warm the mixture, dip a piece of cotton in it and place the cotton in your ear to relieve pain. A few drops of warm honey dropped into the affected ear can also help. It is advisable to place a cotton ball in the ear after the application so as to retain the warmth.

Other remedies:

Mullein, St. John’s wort and garlic oil used as ear drops have all been found to be very effective in treating earaches naturally.

Lemon juice or onion juice applied to the affected ear using a cotton ball can help stop an infection.

Oil made from ground ivy can be used to treat earaches.

Vitamin E oil or garlic oil capsules may be pierced with a sterilized pin and the oil used directly into the ear. This method is particularly useful when one is traveling.

Before using the above home remedies for earache pain, you should consult with a health care provider.


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Romm, Jill Aviva and Sears, William. Naturally Healthy Babies and Children: A Commonsense Guide to Herbal Remedies, Nutrition, and Health. Celestial Arts Publisher, 2003


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