***If ear tubes are in place use Ear Tubes Follow-up Call
* Pain Or Fever Medicine
- For pain relief or fever above 102 F (39 C), give acetaminophen (e.g., Tylenol) every 4 hours or ibuprofen (e.g., Advil) every 6 hours as needed.
- Ibuprofen may be more effective for this type of pain.
* Cold or Hot Pack for Ear Pain
- Apply a cold pack or a cold wet washcloth to outer ear for 20 minutes to reduce pain while medicine takes effect.
- Note: Some children prefer local heat for 20 minutes.
* Olive Oil Eardrops for Persistent Pain
- Exception: Avoid ear drops if ear discharge, ear tubes or hole in eardrum. Also, during the day, do not use any eardrops if the child will be seen later that day. Reason: May make it difficult to visualize the eardrums. It is okay to use at night to help the child get back to sleep.
- For severe earache unresponsive to oral pain medicine, recommend 3 drops of plain olive oil into the ear canal. Another option is plain mineral oil (baby oil).
- Repeat once in 4 hours, if needed.
- Reason ear drops work: They cover the raw, painful surface of the eardrum.
* Ear Discharge Treatment (without ear tubes)
- If pus or cloudy fluid is draining from the ear canal, this means the eardrum has a small tear in it caused by the pressure.
- This usually heals nicely after the ear infection is treated.
- Wipe the discharge away as it appears.
- Avoid plugging with cotton. (Reason: retained pus can cause infection of the lining of the ear canal.)
* Reasons To Call Back
- Severe pain persists over 2 hours after analgesic eardrops and oral pain medicine.
- Your child becomes worse