How to prevent ear infections?

K8t - posted on 06/01/2011 ( 8 moms have responded )

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I was curious how to prevent frequent ear infections and asked the question on a new health site called HealthTap (http://bit.ly/k1GmaL). They give you free access to hundreds of Ob/Gyns and Peds for personalized questions and tips-- just wanted to share the answer with you:
http://bit.ly/lxwWNE

Have you tried anything similar? What worked for you?

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Jody - posted on 06/04/2011

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If you want some super information about ear infections, prevention, explanation of treatment etc go here to Dr. Sears

http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/childho...

Though I will say that "day care" doesn't cause ear infections, though very large day cares do increase germ exposer so it's a pro con thing, more germ exposer = more immune system activitiy (not a bad thing) but if your child starts getting a lot of colds (which often lead to ear infections) at your day care then you should switch to a different one since enough care is not being taken to prevent illness from spreading OR you child is just too prone and needs to be in a smaller daycare with fewer children and therefore less exposer to illness/germs.

Another comment is on breastfeeding laying down, some believe this can help cause ear infections

http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns/ear...

"You might hear that breastfeeding your baby in a lying down position will cause ear infections. Research indicates that this is not true. No matter what positioning you use, breastfeeding actually works to decrease the incidence of ear infections."

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Sarh - posted on 06/06/2011

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My now 5yr old had CHRONIC ear infections. I was 16 when I had her and the ear infections started almost immediately after I stopped breastfeeding at 3m old due to my medical conditions. We had no where else to go, but to stay in the house with my mom who smokes like a chimney. I never gave her a bottle in her crib and always held her at a 45 degree angle while she drank her bottles. I avoided getting water in her ears as often as possible, etc.
See started seeing an ENT at about 6ms old because they were so bad and frequent. At abotu 8-9ms old she had her SECOND set of bilateral ear tubes and her adenoids removed. After that they became scarce and now she is 5yrs old and hasn't had an ear infection in about a yr.

I stopped breastfeeding my son when he was 9ms old, still nursed him at night until 10m old, he never lays down with a bottle either, we do not smoke in the house or around him, he is up to date on shots, etc. He had an ear infection after I stopped nursing him so much and only did so through the night, but has not had another ear infection for about a month or two. I was terrified he'd have them reoccurring like my daughter did, but so far so good.

[deleted account]

Ear infections are caused by bacteria and viruses, not wind or water.

How to Prevent Ear Infections

What can kids do to prevent ear infections? You can avoid places where people are smoking, for one. Cigarette smoke can keep your eustachian tubes from working properly.

You also can try not to catch colds. These steps can help:

Stay away from people who have colds, if possible.
Wash your hands regularly.
Try not to touch your nose and eyes.

Good luck staying clear of colds and keeping those pesky germs out of your ears!


More at: http://kidshealth.org/kid/ill_injure/sic...

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 06/03/2011

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Not letting your kids get water in their nose and back into their inner ear canal.. so swimming lessons can be dangerous, or even bath time if they are young. I had to quit swimming lessons even when I was older I got them alot. Covering the ears is a must - even if it was just kind of cold out my mom made me wear one of those skiier's headbands and the coat was optional. It worked

Jody - posted on 06/03/2011

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ohh yes cover the ears from the wind is a biggy I agree there! but more because it makes the ear ache from the wind and cold than anythign else but pain is pain. And probiotics can't hurt either, not sure if they would help with ear infection or not but i think it's possible since it's supporting good healthy bacteria and you are swallowing it so it comes in contact with the bacteria etc in your throat.....but either way good for you is good for you :)

Elfrieda - posted on 06/02/2011

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I don't really know. I've been covering up my son's ears whenever it's windy and giving him lots of yogurt and some probiotics whenever he gets a sniffle to keep him healthy. Before I started the probiotics, he had two ear infections back-to-back that both needed antibiotics, but now he's been okay for a few months. But I'm not sure if it was the probiotics or the fact that winter is over and better weather is here. I wouldn't add another vaccine to the list unless he had chronic ear infections.

Jody - posted on 06/02/2011

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frequent and bad ear infections seem to run in my family. My brother had them all the time and it affected his speech developlment and even gave him permanent hearing loss. The only thing that worked for him was going to a good chiropractor. I go to a chiropractor for regular check ups and I take my little guy with me. MY chiro looks him over and gives me tips and tricks of tihngs to do to help his proper physical development and gives me little massage tricks etc that seem to help calm my little one.
The biggest thing I have noticed is that after my little guy has a cold or flu he starts pulling at his ears, I very gently massage around his ears and very gently pull his ears to help release the muscle tension and spasms that can happen in the neck from frequent sneezing and coughing when sick, these spasms can constrict the small duct that drain fluid in the ears into the throat, this traps the bacteria from their illness in the ear and taadaa ear infection.
Breastfeeding seems to have helped my little guy not be sick often so he has only had one ear infection that required any medical intervention. I have seen research that says the pacifiers increase the odds of ear infections, probably the constant sucking and potentially germy pacifier introducing more germs into the throat/ear duct..? My little man also got the vaccine mentioned (pneumococca) at the recommendation of my doctor since there is a chance that the seemingly high instances in my family could be from more narrow ducts becoming easily blocked etc so I figured every little bit helps right :)
(Note that my family has used the same chiro for more than 15 years and he does infant/child adjustment which is not the violent adjustments it is gentle massaging adjsutments to keep everything where it should be "if bend be the trunk so grows the tree" :) Finding a good chiropractor who you like and trust can be tough and not all chiropractors are made equal so don't be afraid to walk away if you are not comfortable. Chiro is not for everyone.

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