Ear infections, also called a middle ear infection, are among the most common conditions for both children and adults. Some people tend to ignore them, especially when the symptoms are mild or inconsistent. The best thing for anyone who experiences media this condition to do is to seek medical assistance as soon as possible. For one, untreated ear infections can lead to more problems.
Understanding the effects of the unattended ear is essential to understand the different types of ear infections. The general three types of ear infection include:
Table of Contents
Acute Otitis Media
Of all the three types, this is the most common diagnosis in children and is prevalent in infants. The result of this infection is that it brings diseases to the middle parts with swollen spots having fluids behind the eardrum.
These bacterial buildups often dampen the eardrum variation, resulting in short-term hearing loss during the infection period. Severe acute otitis media cases also come with their significant share of negatives that result in a bulging or perforated eardrum, causing pain to the ear.
Otitis Media with Effusion
Otitis media with effusion occurs when the Eustachian tube becomes clogged. Since the tube is responsible for draining fluids from the ears to the back of the throat, a clog will bring complications. One of the signs of this infection side is hearing difficulties that are always hard to notice since it can take longer days before manifestation.
Chronic otitis media with effusion
This infection side occurs when the fluid remains in the middle ear for a long time or repeatedly returns even without active disease. When left untreated for long, it is one of the types that can bring about persistent hearing loss and hinder the central auditory nervous system from reaching its full potential.
It cannot also go without mentioning the signs and symptoms of ear infection. This is important because some people always ignore them without really knowing what they are dealing with. Plus, considering that ear infections tend to happen to children, it is prudent that parents get to be familiar with them. Consider the following:
- Fussy, irritable behavior
- Problems sleeping
- Issues balancing
- Lack of appetite
- Fluid draining from the ear
- Trouble hearing
- Pulling at the ear(s)
- Red outer ear
Effect of Unattended Ear
Ear infections can bring many adverse effects if the condition is not attended to on time. While others can be handled successfully, other cases can be permanent and will force the patients to live with them forever. Individuals who have suffered from ear infection are always at risk of getting infected again in the future.
To avert such cases permanently, it is only essential that everyone seek medical assistance as soon as they can. Otherwise, if not, below are some of the long term effects of the untreated ear.
Delayed Language of Media
It cannot be put any better by saying that someone who does not hear will have reduced language tendencies. When it comes to children, they need to hear consistent and clear speech sounds to develop strong language skills.
Periods of hearing loss, even reduced hearing at an early age, can significantly impact a child’s language development. Such cases always lead to language development problems when they begin mispronouncing words, which is an issue that could persist even after the child’s hearing has recovered.
Hearing loss/reduction caused by an ear infection can make it harder for kids to listen and follow instructions, especially in the classroom. Consistent ear infections at an early age can also impact the development of a child’s auditory pathway, making it hard for them to process what it is they’re hearing.
This is known as an auditory processing deficit. Kids with this type have trouble processing two or more instructions or pieces of information and have difficulty understanding speech in noise. This makes it difficult for them to stay focused, and they can miss critical education in the presence of background noise.
Due to the potential negative impact on developing auditory processing that chronic otitis media can have, it is not surprising that associated skills can also be affected. Due to the inability to break up phonemes in words, a child who has had numerous ear infections can be at higher risk for reading difficulties, including dyslexia.
Permanent Hearing Loss
It is not just an untreated infection that can cause this. Prolonged infection and recurring infection are both real problems. It can result in irreversible hearing loss. As stated above, frequent infections can lead to hearing loss. The worst-case scenario is a permanent hearing loss.
Other Bodily Damages
- Ruptured Ear Drums–This sounds worse than it is, but it will require surgery to fix if it happens too often. Basically, the infection (blood and pus) press on the eardrum until it can’t take it anymore, and it bursts. This can also lead to hearing loss.
- Enlarged Tonsils and Adenoids Both of these are designed to help your body fight foreign bodies. Untreated infections can cause them to swell, causing potential breathing and hearing problems.
Just like any other condition, even chronic ear infection has treatment options. But that does mean they involve care from more than ordinary health facilities. For anyone who seeks treatment with such a condition, the possibilities of seeking assistance include an emergency room San Antonio TX boasts. An adequately equipped facility should provide the help needed. By visiting any facility of choice, patients are likely to get the following service:
For chronic ear infection, the doctor will prescribe antibiotics. These may be taken orally or (rarely) given intravenously if the infection is severe. The doctor may also suggest ear drops for a hole (perforation) in the eardrum. Some conditions always differ primarily with perforated ears, and the doctor should advise on the best step to take.
Surgery is one of the treatment options that can be troublesome for a majority of people. But when the case is chronic and does not respond to medications, there is never an alternative. For example, issues that touch on children with non-responding medicines, surgery is always an excellent option.