Ears are very sensitive organs, and most people do not realize until they are faced with an ear infection. Ear aches are painful and so irritating that they may be entirely disruptive.
However, they are also easy to cure. In fact, you do not even need to visit a doctor to have your ear infection treated; you can do it yourself from the comfort of your home.
So, how do you go about treating an ear infection at home? Here are 12 remedies that will work magic for you.
Garlic is well-endowed with antimicrobial properties that make it effective against many infections, including ear infections. However, you have to extract its oil to harness its benefits.
Fortunately, garlic oil is easy and quick to prepare. For instance, you can cook two cloves of garlic using mustard oil in just a few minutes.
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Pouring some garlic oil into the infected ear at least once a day, preferably before going to sleep. You can also east some raw garlic to boost your overall immunity.
Salt is also effective against bacteria and other microbes that cause ear infection. It is also amazingly easy to prepare and use.
To use salt for your ear ache, first heat it on a dry spoon and wrap it in a soft cloth. Wait for it to cool a bit and inset the wrapped salt in the infected ear.
Give it some time to work its magic before taking it out; you should experience some relief from the pain after a few minutes. Here is a step-by-step illustrative YouTube video to guide you.
3. Warm water
Warm water is perhaps the simplest home remedy for an ear ache. People all over the world have used warm water to sooth virtually any body pain; even a warm bath helps overcome painful emotions. As such, you can trust warm water to sooth your ear ache.
You will need a bottle or polythene bag to use warm water for your ear ache. All you need to do is to press the bottle or bag against the aching ear and give it some time to take effect.
However, ensure that the water is not too hot to burn your skin or damage the sensitive nerves in your ear.
Ginger is considered one of the most popular medicinal herbs thanks to its potent antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. However, ginger is not effective in its raw form. As such, you need to extract the juice and pour it into the infected ear; just squeeze the roots and add some warm water.
You can also mix the juice with olive oil for better and quicker results—remember to give the mixture some time to settle before pouring it into the infected ear.
Radish is as delicious as it is medicinally beneficial. It is popular for treating common conditions such as dehydration and constipation as well as chronic conditions such as high blood pressure. Herbalists and some physicians also recommend it for ear infections.
Radish needs to be complemented with mustard oil to work. Just mix some radish with two teaspoons of mustard oil and heat for some time to mix.
Filter out the radish and pour the oil into the infected ear to ease the pain. The pain may recur, so pour as often as necessary until the infection is eradicated.
6. Breast milk
It may sound bizarre, but breast milk is one of the most effective natural cures for infections, cuts, bruises, and burns. This is because it is rich in antibodies that are effective against bacteria and inflammation.
And, considering that ear infections mostly affect infants, it is the ideal home remedy or eradicating ear aches.
Mothers are advised to harvest some breast milk and pour it into their infants’ ears to overcome ear ache. The milk should be poured into the infected ear every two hours for it to work.
However, it is incredibly effective and will overcome the infection in just a few hours.
Onions will bring tears to your eyes, but they will work wonders for your heath and ear infections. They are endowed with potent antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties that work in conjunction to relieve pain and cure the infection.
To use onions for your ear infection, begin by heating them in an oven for about 15 minutes. Leave them to cool and squeeze out the juice while they are still warm.
You can then pour the onion oil into the infected ear to ease the pain; the oil will have an almost-instant relief, but it should be used repeatedly to actually cure the infection.
8. Apple cider vinegar
You can trust apple cider vinegar to cure a wide range of common infections, including ear infections. It is particularly effective against infections caused by fungi or bacteria. White vinegar also works just as well as the former.
Since apple cider vinegar is too concentrated in its original form, it is advisable to first mix it with some water before applying.
To use, soak a cotton ball into the mixture of water and the vinegar and place it on the infected ear. Allow it to sit for some minutes before removing and tilting your head to drain the mixture from your ear.
9. Olive oil
Ear wax is important for your ears’ health. However, NHS explains that it can be a problem if it accumulates; buildup of ear wax can attract fungi that affect the Eustachian tube, causing pain and irritation.
Olive oil, however, is very effective in such a scenario. It should be poured into the ear while warm to melt the earwax and kill the fungi.
It should also be cleaned off after some minutes to avoid even further infections—use a cotton swab and be careful not to touch the eardrum.
Basil has also proven to be a reliable cure for ear infection, and some may argue it is more powerful that most other home remedies. There are several ways to apply use basil for relieving ear ache, but each method involves first extracting juice from basil leaves.
One way of using basil is by applying its juice around the infected ear; please note that you should not pour the juice into the ear but rather apply it outside the canal.
You can also dilute the basil juice with coconut oil and use a cotton swab to wipe the ear canal and exterior with the mixture.
11. Adjust your sleeping position
Your sleeping position can lessen or aggravate your ear ache. When you sleep, the pressure exerted on the ears can cause the inflammation to worsen and consequently increase the pain. As such, it is advisable to lie on the side without the ear infection.
You can also use soft pillows and other accessories to relieve pressure on your ears when you sleep; these accessories are especially useful if you are a rough sleeper and cannot stick to one position throughout the night.
12. Hydrogen peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is a life-save around the home. It is effective for a wide range of issues including cuts, scratches, and burns. It can also be used for ear infections, but caution should be taken as it is very potent.
Hydrogen peroxide can be harmful to your ears if used in its concentrated form. As such, mix a small amount of hydrogen peroxide with a cup of water and pour three drops into the infected ear.
The mixture may take some minutes to work, so be patient and keep your head tilted to hold it in. till your head sideways after some minutes to let it drip away and wipe with a soft cloth.
13. Peppermint oil
Peppermint has everything your ear infection needs: it is anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and has mild traces of anesthetic properties. It is also one of the most potent home remedies for ear aches, and it is relatively easy to use.
To use peppermint oil, extract juice from peppermint leaves and place them just at the entrance of the infected ear—be careful not to let the juice get inside the canal as it is very powerful.
Alternatively, you can apply the juice just outside your ear and complement with another remedy such as warm compresses using warm water.
14. Exercise your neck
Sometimes the reason behind an ear ache may have nothing to do with infection and everything to do with pressure. Pressure in the ear canal can stretch the delicate muscles and cause a sharp pain and imbalance. For this, the remedy is exercising the neck.
There are several neck exercises that are ideal for relieving pressure inside the ear canal. Here are a few recommended exercises illustrated by Live Strong health magazine.
15. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has numerous medicinal qualities: antibacterial, antiseptic, antiviral, antimicrobial, fungicide, insecticide, balsamic, expectorant and stimulant.
Tea tree oil functions like many other home remedies on the list. However, it has to be complemented with olive oil and warmed before pouring a few drops into the infected year.
16. Mullein flower oil
Mullein flower oil has anesthetic and anti-inflammatory properties that are beneficial for pain relief and treating infections. It can be used on its own or in combination with garlic oil to overcome ear ache and eventually heal the infection.
To use, simply dip a cotton swab in mullein flower oil and rub the infected ear’s canal and exterior parts with it.
Cure Your Earache With These Remedies
Do not let your ear ache get in the way of your comfort as you have everything you need to overcome it at home. Try out any of the 16 remedies recommended above and get the much-needed relief; in fact, start right now by heating some salt and using it as directed above.
However, take care to follow the guidelines to the letter to avoid further complications.