Chiropractic Care for Ear Infections in Children
Find Relief from Acute Otitis Media
As a parent, you want to ensure the child gets relief right away, and that he or she never has to deal with ear infections again.
There are 10 million new cases of ear infections every year. It is no wonder, then, why ear infections (aka Otis media) are the most common illness affecting babies and young children. Ear infections are the number one reason for visiting a pediatrician, accounting for 35% of all pediatric visits (ACA, 2014).
How can a chiropractor help my child’s ear infections?
Inside of your ear you’ll find a little tube called the Eustachian tube. This tube is responsible for equalizing pressure and draining fluid from your middle ear to your throat.
In children, this tube is more horizontal. That makes it more likely that fluid will be trapped and blocked in your child’s ear. A muscle called the tensor veli palatine (TVP) muscle (among others) controls how this tube opens and closes. Nerve control of these muscles comes from the cranial nerve. If these neurons are not properly modulated, the TVP may malfunction. As a result, the Eustachian tube is blocked, which means mucus can’t drain out of the middle ear. As the fluid backs up, inflammation and infection results.
As pediatric chiropractors, we do not treat ear infections directly. We’re not trying to kill the virus that’s in your child’s ear, for example. Instead, we remove the interference within the nervous system. This allows your child’s Eustachian tube to function uninhibited. The ear drains and then heals. This works even for a current, active ear infection, and sometimes it works very fast. We provide simple, gentle, effective adjustments to the upper neck that allow the TVP to function properly.
Is chiropractic care a better solution than antibiotics for ear infections?
You have choices when it comes to your own health care, and your child’s health care. I won’t tell you not to seek the cure that makes you feel most comfortable, especially if your child is in distress right now.
However, bacterial antibiotics will have little effect if the ear infection is caused by a virus, and viruses account for the vast majority of ear infections, meaning antibiotics have little or no effect, even though they are the knee-jerk solution offered by many doctors and pediatricians. It’s important to be cautious about antibiotics. They are a tool, not a cure-all, and they can actually harm the GI tract. Some kids are sent to the emergency room with serious reactions to these pills.
The American Academy of Pediatrics released updated recommendations for the diagnosis and treatment of acute otitis media (AOM) in 2014. The new recommendations offered more stringent guidelines required prior to prescribing antibiotics.
The important thing is to understand your options and what they’re going to accomplish for your child, and then to make a responsible decision for your child. If your child has chronic ear infections, chiropractic care can address the issues that are causing this problem so that your child stops experiencing ear infections altogether.
Why is chiropractic care often a better solution than ear tubes?
Ear tubes can actually cause a lot of damage to your child’s hearing. This is a recognized fact which has been published in The New York Times. This damage can continue even after tubes are removed.
There is some discrepancy between medical doctors as to when ear tubes should be used. We urge you to try chiropractic care to address your child’s chronic ear infections before allowing a doctor to surgically place a tube in your child’s ear.
How quickly can chiropractic care resolve ear infections in progress?
Sometimes chiropractic care can help to resolve active ear infections in a matter of hours. Many parents find their children are sick a lot less often after receiving chiropractic care. Chiropractic care can be used either as a preventative measure or as a measure to provide immediate relief. It’s safe, it’s gentle, and it’s an effective alternative.
Ready to give your child lasting relief from chronic ear infections? If so, call Elevated Health Center to make an appointment today!