Waking up with an earache is the last thing you would ever want, but it is inevitable if you have an infection in any part of your ear. Though all earaches feel agonizing and similar, there are actually different types of ear infections, which cause pain to generate from different parts of the ear. Otitis externa is an infection or inflammation of the outer ear, which causes pain in your ear canal. Otitis media is an infection or inflammation of the inner ear which is often accompanied by severe pain and drainage of pus. If your tympanic membrane, or eardrum, is infected, it is called myringitis. Myringitis can even lead to perforations of the eardrum if it is not treated on time. Though ear infections are common in children, it affects adults as well. Earaches are usually caused by allergies, a bacterial or fungal infection, an injury to any part of the ear, common cold, build up of excess earwax, decreased pressure, or arthritis in the jaw. Here are a few home remedies that will help get you some relief if the pain gets too much to bear.
1. Heating Pad
Placing a heating pad or a hot water bottle on the aching ear will give you some temporary relief from the pain. It will also improve blood circulation in the area, which is beneficial in getting rid of an infection quicker.
Crush some fresh ginger, squeeze it, and put a few drops of the juice in the affected ear. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and will help relieve the pain. You can heat a tablespoon of ginger root in a quarter a cup of sesame oil and massage it externally around your ear.
Onion is an antiseptic, so it prevents the growth of any microorganism that is causing the pain. Grate some onions, squeeze out its juice, and put a few drops of it into the aching ear about 2 to 3 times a day.
The cooling effect of peppermint provides you some relief from earaches. It also has some antimicrobial properties that will help control infection. Crush some peppermint leaves, squeeze out its juice, and put a few drops of it into the infected ear. Peppermint oil is also a good remedy, just make sure not to put it directly into the ear though. You can use peppermint oil to massage the area around the infected ear externally.
Garlic has antibiotic as well as analgesic properties, so it is beneficial in providing quick relief from earaches. Crush a clove of garlic, heat it in 2 tablespoons of sesame oil for about 5 minutes, and strain it after it has cooled. Pour 2 to 3 drops of the oil in the aching ear. Repeat, when your ear starts to ache again.
Using heated salt provides relief from earaches by drawing out moisture from your ear, which is required by microbes to thrive. It also improves blood circulation in the area. Take 5 tablespoons of salt, heat it in a pan until it becomes brown in color, and wrap it in a cloth or put it in a sock. Press it on the infected ear each day until the pain subsides. You can reheat the salt in a microwave it gets cold, just make sure the heat is bearable.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
A combination of apple cider vinegar and rubbing alcohol helps get rid of microbes that cause ear infection, thus relieving pain. Put a few drops of the mixture into the infected ear and let it stay for a few minutes. Repeat the procedure 2 to 3 times a day.
Preventing earache in the first place is much better than any remedy. Always consume foods high in antioxidants and sleep with your head slightly elevated to prevent pressure from building up in your ear canal. If high altitude is causing the pain, chew on gum or a piece of hard candy for relief.