Ear infections typically fall into two categories - otitis externa and otitis media.
Swimmer's Ear (Otitis Externa)
Otitis externa, commonly referred to as 'swimmer's ear', is caused by an infection in the external auditory canal. This type of infection is common in the summer months because activities like swimming and water sports.
This type of ear infection is common in winter months. It's contracted through other people who have a bacterial infection in their ear who are contagious.
Ear infections are a common reason for patients to seek medical care, especially amongst children.
Ear Infection Symptoms
Otitis externa and otitis media cause similar symptoms, including
- Ear pain
Ear pain can also be experienced if you have a viral upper respiratory infection, which causes sinus congestion and pressure in the ears. If you have an infant and they are pulling on their ears, having trouble eating and sleeping a lot, they may be showing signs of an ear infection.
Ear Infection Treatment
When you come to Lanier Urgent Care about your ear infection, we typically inspect the external auditory canals and tympanic membranes visually to determine which illness may be triggering the symptoms. Swimmer's ear treatment usually involves ear drops. Otitis media is generally treated with oral antibiotics. If you happen to have an upper respiratory illness, we will usually recommend antihistamines and decongestants to help you through the symptoms.
If you suspect you may have an ear infection, come see us today!