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Ear Drops for Pain

Ear Drops for Pain

Over-the-counter drops are some of the most popularly used medications for ear pain. However, chronic ear pain is treated with prescription ear drops and if required, medical procedure is indicated for curing the condition.
Ningthoujam Sandhyarani
Last Updated: Mar 21, 2018
Amongst the common medical problems, ear pain is one. It can occur in children and adults alike. It can be manifested due to several medical conditions, either related to the ears or other parts of the body. Many of us end up using over-the-counter ear drops for pain relief, without thinking about the suitability of the medication. Here, we will discuss the causes of earache, and the drops used for relieving pain.
Causes of Ear Pain
Earache is a troubling condition, which requires immediate medical attention. Patients often complain of throbbing pain, soreness, and drainage from the ear. As we all know, pain and soreness are the typical signs of ear infection. However, there are more causes of ear pain than just an infection, which are listed below:
  • Blockage of Eustachian tubes
  • Microbial infection of the external ear, ear canal, or middle ear
  • Accumulation and compaction of earwax
  • Physical trauma to the ear
  • Ear pain associated with sinusitis and common cold
  • Increased ear pressure during scuba diving or flight journey
  • In children, teeth eruption causes ear pain
  • Dental infection causing referred ear pain
  • Jaw disorders affecting nerves of the ear
Types of Ear Drops
It is to be borne in mind that not all earache cases are treatable with drops. The effectiveness of these medications depend on the underlying cause. For instance, pain resulted due to clogged ear can be alleviated by using clearing solution. The ear drop helps in softening earwax, and opening the blocked ear, thus reducing the pain. While in case of the pain caused by infection, antimicrobial medication is suitable.
Over-the-Counter Drops
Mild to moderate pain symptoms in the ear can be treated with over-the-counter drops and garlic oil drops. If the causal factor is mild infection, antiseptic drops will be recommended to fight against bacteria. Also, homeopathic drop medications are available in drug stores. They are formulated with active ingredients, which help treat ear pain. For every patient, using ear drop of a reputable brand, and following usage directions are imperative to relieve the pain. Self treatment of chronic earache by using ear drops is strictly not recommended.
Prescription Drops
For earache treatment, the doctor may recommend either prescription drops (antibiotic drop, with or without steroid) or therapeutic procedures, or sometimes both. The otic solution, formulated with antipyrine and benzocaine, is effective to alleviate swelling and pain in the ear, which is caused by ear infection. Follow the usage directions, instructed by the doctor. For treating infection related pain, frequent application of the medication is indicated. While for softening and removing earwax, otic ear drops should be applied twice daily. Some brands of prescription drops are Ciprodex, Cortisporin, Auralgan, A/B Otic, Auroto, Otocalm, and Antiben.
When to Seek Doctor's Help
Ear drops are not recommended, if the manifested sign is due to any of these conditions - post surgery pain, injured eardrums, and disorders of the ear tubes. Also, refrain from using drops, in case of constant ear irritation, rashes, inflammation, and unusual discharge from the affected ear. In such cases, getting them checked by a trusted physician is a practical solution, rather than self instilling ear drops for the pain. The doctor will examine the condition and suggest the suitable treatment.
Learning the possible reasons for ear pain will surely help in minimizing this common medical problem. One of the most important things is to use ear drops only when necessary. Stop the use in case of adverse effects, like unusual ear drainage and high fever. Also, stop the usage if the symptoms persist for more than 2 days, and consult the doctor immediately.
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