Does Ear Pain Mean an Ear Infection?

Ear pain has many different causes, ranging from simple allergy issues to ear infections. If you begin to notice pain in your ear, keep an eye on your symptoms, as a worsening pain or discomfort could indicate a middle ear infection.

Ear infections are really common, so don’t panic immediately if your ear (or both of your ears) start to hurt. Our AFC Urgent Care Sevierville team explains all about ear infections below, so keep reading to learn more.

Where Do Ear Infections Come From?

Ear infections are similar to any other viral or bacterial infection that you contract. If you are exposed to a virus or bacteria and it makes its way into your inner ear, it can grow and cause unpleasant symptoms like pain and a feeling of pressure. It can also block off the tubes that lead into your body that help with fluid drainage.

In addition to the pain, a fever is also a common reaction to an ear infection. As with most fevers, it just means that your body is working hard to fight off the invader. Ear infections are one of the most common types of infections, and in fact, most children have at least one before they turn 3.

Common Symptoms of Ear Infections

  • Pain inside one or both ear(s)
  • Fever
  • Discharge coming from ear
  • Feeling pressure in your ear
  • Difficulty hearing

Do Ear Infections Need Treatment?

Some infections require antibiotics, but most ear infections can actually be handled by your own immune system. With enough rest and plenty of fluids, you can expect to start feeling better in a few days. OTC pain relief medication can also be used to make your recovery time a bit more pleasant.

If your pain lasts more than three days or is starting to get worse, come see us. We can do a full evaluation and will look in your ear to check for excess fluid and signs of infection. If we determine that antibiotics are the way to go, make sure you take the entire dosage, even after you are feeling better. We hope you feel better soon!

Preventing Future Ear Infections

  • Keep your ears clean and dry.
  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Avoid smoking.
  • Stay up-to-date with the vaccination schedule.

Is ear pain affecting your day? Drop by AFC Urgent Care Sevierville to visit with our care team.