The cold is already back and with Karlotta the coughs and coughs begin to proliferate again. snot among the little ones and also painful otitis. And the sudden changes in temperature typical of these dates are one of the risk factors for infections respiratory infections that can lead to otitis.
Because as he explains Dr. Carlos de Paula, ENT Vithas Hospital Valencia October 9,
“Colds and flu cause a high production of mucus that can accumulate in the ears, become superinfected and produce otitis media. As a result of the inflammation we will begin to notice a sensation of clogged ears, throbbing pain and a slight hearing loss.”
The logical thing when the pain begins, which can be very strong, or the lack of hearing, is to go to a specialist as soon as possible to assess the case and decide whether or not it is necessary to prescribe a treatment aimed at helping the expulsion of mucus and recovering the level of hearing.
Because “if the excess mucus is not eliminated, inflammation of the middle ear (otitis media) can occur, the most common in the cold months, which manifests itself in the form of pain in the ear, a sensation of blockage, general discomfort and fever. in some cases”.
Furthermore, we must not forget that successive episodes of otitis or poorly treated infections can cause a permanent hearing deficiency: hearing loss, which begins to affect people’s quality of life. “Hence the importance of visiting a specialist” as soon as possible, says Paula’s doctor.
Children, one of the population groups most vulnerable to otitis
According to the Spanish Society of Otorhinolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery (SEORL-CCC), 90% of children suffer at least one episode of otitis before the age of five. And during the changes of season, it is children, along with the elderly, who are at greater risk of developing otitis. The reason? Well, their level of defenses is still very low.
“In addition, in children, the Eustachian tube may be immature or blocked by the well-known adenoid vegetationswhich will facilitate the access of mucus and bacteria from the nose and throat to the middle ear,” emphasizes Dr. Carlos de Paula.
How to prevent otitis in winter
The best way to prevent otitis is to try to prevent the little ones from catching a cold and protect them from viral infections, although this is not always possible. In any case, Dr. Carlos de Paula provides some recommendations to avoid ear infections.
– Perform nasal washes. Although it is something that is generally not liked by children, it is important to eliminate mucus to prevent it from getting lodged in the ear. To do this, otorhinolaryngologists recommend performing nasal washes with saline solution or saline regularly to promote the expulsion of mucus.
– Avoid sudden changes in temperature, especially when entering or leaving any room.
– Protect the nose and mouth to prevent the entry of cold air. Having a scarf or collar on hand is always convenient.
– Hand hygiene. We learned it in a pandemic and we must not forget it. We have to wash our hands well to eliminate germs that can lead to respiratory tract infections.
– Reduce or eliminate tobacco consumption in the family environment.