Usually, ear infections occur in the middle ear. The middle ear is located behind the eardrum, and this is where germs from your nose and throat can easily be trapped, resulting in ear infection symptoms. When you catch a cold, your Eustachian tube tends to become swollen and inflamed.
The Eustachian tube is what connects your throat to your ear. When the tube swells up, fluid can easily be blocked and trapped within your ear. This fluid can allow germs and bacteria to grow, leading to an ear infection.
Ear Infection Symptoms Exposed
Sometimes, the fluid buildup might not cause an infection or inflammation. If this happens, you will likely feel a sensation of “plugged ears”. This can diminish hearing, but the fluid will drain on its own, taking up to a few weeks.
When the fluid in your ears build up and do cause an infection, it can lead to a burst eardrum. You will notice a thick yellow fluid leaking out from your ears. This condition is not serious, and the ear drum can heal by itself. Other common ear infection symptoms include earaches and a fever. These earaches can be mildly painful and are usually more common among children. This is because children have smaller Eustachian tubes that can become inflamed, swollen, and blocked easily.
Other symptoms include itching, redness in the ear, and tender earlobes.
Swimming is a common cause of ear infections. However, you can be infected if other fluids get into your ear canal. Sometimes, the bacterium that causes ear infections is common in the ear, but with the addition of foreign liquids or water, it can provide the perfect breeding ground for them.
Those with allergies, psoriasis, diabetes, and eczema are more prone to getting ear infections.
If you have a middle ear infection, also known as acute otitis media infection, you will experience symptoms 2 to 7 days after you are first infected. Ear infections are usually the result of a cold or upper respiratory infection.
Other than experiencing a fever, ear fluid drainage, and an earache, you may also have tinnitus (ringing in the ears), hear popping noises, feel pressure in the ears, vomit, lose your appetite, have trouble hearing, and in some cases, have difficulties sleeping. Often, ear infections are correlated with dizziness and problems balancing. Younger children may also be irritated and may cry continuously.
Most ear infection symptoms clear up quickly with the use of antibiotic ear drops.
Ear Infection Symptoms in Adults