Ear Infections and Essential Oils
What is an Ear Infection?
A small tube connects your ear to your throat. A cold can cause this tube to swell. When the tube swells enough to become blocked, it can trap fluid inside your ear. This makes it a perfect place for bacteria to grow and cause an infection.
Ear infections happen mostly to young children because their tubes are smaller and get blocked more easily. It also happens as a secondary infection to colds or flu.
Adult ear infections are caused by infection from fluid build up in the Eustachian tube. The Eustachian tube connects the inner ear to the nasal passages in order to drain fluid from the ears and equalize pressure between outside and inside of the body, but when fluid or mucous builds up in the Eustachian tube, it is an easy target for infection.
A cold can cause fluid build up and infection in the Eustachian tube. Post nasal drip may also contribute. An adult does not necessarily need to be sick to get adult ear infection. Often, the infection is caused by mucous being blown into the Eustachian tubes by blowing the nose or failing to clean the liquid out of the ear with a cotton swab after showering.
In one of every four cases in children, ear infection is not caused by a bacterial infection but by a viral infection. Viruses often cause adult ear infection as well.What are the symptoms?
- The most common is, mild to severe, pain in the ear. This can cause trouble sleeping.
- Pulling or tugging at the ear, especially in infant.
- A mild fever is produced by the body, to help fight the infection. (Sometimes the fever causes the infected ear to turn red.)
- Pressure from swelling build up, due to fluid behind ear drum
- Sometimes, thick and yellow fluid drains from the ear.
- This happens from the eardrum has burst and the fluid behind it is able to escape. This is not serious, and usually makes the pain go away. The eardrum will heal itself over time.
- When fluid build up, but there is no pain, that is a sign that the middle ear has not been infected yet. You may have trouble hearing, and children often say their ear just feels plugged up.
You can help prevent ear infections in your child.
- Do not smoke. Ear infections happen more often to children who are around cigarette smoke. Even fumes from tobacco smoke on your hair and clothes can affect your child.
- Make sure your child does not go to sleep while sucking on a bottle.
- Begin taking Immunity essential oil blend, at first sign of cold/flu, to avoid a secondary infection like an ear infection.
Essential Oils that help Ear Infections.
- Apply 1-2 drops Eucalyptus radiata from behind the ear, down the throat area, and on the chest.>>SEE IMAGE>>
- Eucalyptus will 'open' the Eustachian tube, and 'prepare' the ear.
- Wait one minute, then follow with 1-2 drops Rosemary oil, the same as suggested above.
- Rosemary will fight the bacterial/viral infection.
- Mix essential oils with carrier oil for children and sensitive skin.
- Do this morning and night for the first 3 days and then once at night until ear infection is cleared up.
- If ear infection is still present after 7 days, reevaluate the essential oil dilution and consult a healthcare physician.
- Treat both ears, even if only one ear is infected. This will keep the body in balance, and keep the other ear from getting infected.
DO NOT AT ANYTIME DROP OILS INSIDE THE EAR CANAL!
- Apply 2 drops Lavender oil, the same as suggested above, to help with pain. Can also rub 1-2 drops on the feet to help calm a child.
- Apply warm compress, to help drive oils into the body, if desired.Can also use 1-2 drops (Heat can cause sensitivity, so dilute oils with carrier oil before doing this)
To help fight viral/bacterial infection and prevent further secondary infections:
- Immunity Blend, diluted with carrier oil, on the bottom of feet to help fight infection. Use also internally,
- For children: Dip a toothpick in Immunity blend, then poke toothpick into an apple wedges or stir a drop into applesauce.
- Can also mix 1 drop Immunity blend with 6 drops Pink Grapefruit oil to help "sweeten" the Immunity blend and take some "heat" away. Then take 1 drop of the "sweetened mixture. Be aware that by "diluting" the Immunity, you may need to take it more often.
- Can also use Oregano oil to fight infection and for pain. Mix 1 drop Oregano to 1oz. Carrier oil. Apply a drop of the mixture onto a cotton ball, then place the cotton ball at the Entrance of the ear canal, where the outer ear cradles. Keep it there, as long as possible. Do not drop into ear.
- For acute situations, adults take 2 drops Oregano in a capsule, filled with carrier oil, internally twice a day, while treating the ear externally.
- Can also take Immunity blend, internally. Mix 4-5 drops in a capsule, filled with carrier oil. Take 3 capsules with each meal for the first day. Then take 1 capsule at every meal the second day, and so on, until infection clears up.
- Important Note: For Infants, Dilute any essential oil 50% with carrier oil (olive oil, grapeseed oil, etc.)