- What You Should Know About Ear Rubbing:
- Most infants have discovered their ears and are playing with them.
- Some have an itchy ear canal.
- Earwax buildup is the most common cause. Most wax problems are caused by putting cotton swabs in the ear canal.
- Ear pulling can start when your child has a cold. It can be caused by fluid in the middle ear. Less often, it's caused by an ear infection. If this is the case, your child will develop other symptoms. Look for fever or increased crying.
- Ear pulling without other symptoms is not a sign of an ear infection.
- Here is some care advice that should help.
- Habit Type of Ear Rubbing:
- If touching the ear is a new habit, ignore it.
- This helps prevent your child from doing it for attention.
- Cotton Swabs - Do Not Use:
- Cotton swabs can push earwax back and cause a plug.
- Earwax has a purpose. It protects the lining of the ear canal.
- Earwax also comes out on its own.
- Q-tips should never be used before the teen years. Reason: they are wider than the ear canal.
- Keep Soap Out of the Ears:
- Keep soap and shampoo out of the ear canal.
- Reason: makes the ears itchy.
- White Vinegar Eardrops:
- For an itchy ear canal, you can use half-strength white vinegar. Make this by mixing the vinegar with equal parts warm water.
- Place 2 drops in each ear canal once daily.
- Do this for three days.
- Reason: restores the normal acid pH.
- Caution: do not use eardrops if your child has ear drainage or ear tubes. Also, do not use if your child has a hole in eardrum.
- What to Expect:
- With this treatment, most itching is gone in 2 or 3 days.
- Call Your Doctor If:
- Rubbing the ear lasts more than 3 days
- Itching of ear lasts more than 1 week
- You think your child needs to be seen
- Your child becomes worse
And remember, contact your doctor if your child develops any of the 'Call Your Doctor' symptoms.