Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Natural Ear Infection Treatments

My son had an earache after a week of being sick with a cough. I decided to try a homemade remedy recommended for an ear infection since it was late at night, and I really didn't feel like going down the whole antibiotic route the next morning. There were three popular at home ear infections treatments that parents reported using: holding a cooked onion against your ear for 20-30 minutes, a few drops of garlic oil, or a few drops of hydrogen peroxide. I tried the few drops of oil in his ear first because that seemed the most reasonable treatment. Garlic has antibacterial properties and it seemed easy enough, but it didn't work. Or, I should say, it didn't work fast enough--my son was screaming in pain several minutes later. So I moved on to the roasted onion--which seemed kind of wacky, but appealed to me because it was new and different--like taking a trip to a foreign country. Basically, you are suffocating the bacteria in a haze of onion steam or it's just the heat of the onion. Either way it worked well and A. was asking for me to hold it next to his ear when I would remove the onion. I held it on his ear for 30 minutes twice over two hours and he seemed to be better the next day. I have also heard that Mullein Oil, which you can find in any health food store, is supposed to work well.

UPDATE: My son went on antibiotics several days later for this ear infection. According to a New York Times article the study done at the Children's Hospital Medical Center in Cincinnati only allowed children to participate in a study which delayed antibiotic treatment of ear infections when the temperature is below 101.5. The participants were told to use pain medication and fill a prescription only if the ear infection hadn't resolved in 48 hours or symptoms increased.
update on ear infection treatments...


Cannon and Kassie said...

I swear by garlic/muelin drops! Good to know about the onion.

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mmcnealy said...

How did you cook the onion?

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gfcfmom said...

I cut the onion in half and put the flat side down on a cookie sheet in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes. The onion was soft when I got it out of the oven and the flat side was brown. Then I wrapped it in two layers of cheese cloth.

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