Though some earaches (especially when due to injury) warrant a doctor’s attention, the symptoms of an earache can be treated at home.
Below are some safe, natural methods of treating an earache as an alternative to medication.
Earache Causes and Symptoms
Earaches are caused by a number of things, including internal scratches or injury (as a result of digging inside the ear with foreign objects or trauma to the ear canal), bacterial infection, moisture or air trapped inside the ear, sinus congestion, etc.
The symptoms of an earache will likely include redness, swelling, ringing in the ears, congestion, tingling, itchiness and pain. You may experience some or all of these symptoms, and if they persist after trying the methods listed here, you should quickly seek medical attention.
Echinacea – This herb is often recommended for those who are battling a cold or just before cold season to reduce one’s likelihood of getting a cold. What’s little known about Echinacea is that it can also be used to treat earaches. Just a teaspoon of the herb’s essential oils dropped at the back of the throat up to three times daily and up to 6 drops into the ear itself every few hours will go to work internally battling those germs that are likely causing the earache. In many cases, the pain should subside after a few treatments.
Goldenseal – This is another herb that has many different uses and healing abilities. Its key ingredient, berberine, also has antibiotic properties which stems the root of the problem and helps ease the pain of an earache. Goldenseal is commonly available in health food stores as a tea that is particularly soothing to earache sufferers when hot. Herbalists recommend up to 3 cups of goldenseal tea daily as a pain reliever.
Other herbal essential oils that can be eye-dropped directly into the ear to reduce inflammation and pain associated with an earache are mullein, garlic, calendula and St. John’s wort. Simply heat the oils to just above room temperature. All it takes is a couple of drops per affected ear every 2 or 3 hours. Tilt the head so the oil can drip deep into the ear canal. Afterwards, place a cotton ball in each affected ear to hold the oil in place.
If you suspect that your earache is due to congestion, you may find that temporarily eliminating dairy products from your diet will provide a considerable amount of relief since dairy products produce mucus. Mucus is probably what is causing the sinus congestion and earache in the first place. In addition to getting rid of dairy, onions and carrots can come in handy in the most unlikely of ways.
Warm an onion in the oven or microwave (being careful not to get it too hot) and place it in a piece of cheesecloth or thin cotton cloth. Hold it against the affected ear and let the onion’s chemicals have their way, removing germs and toxins naturally.
The carrot works in much the same way. Grate a carrot or puree it in a blender until it’s a pulp. Again, put the carrot pulp in a piece of cotton cloth or cheesecloth and hold it against your ear for about 15 minutes. The carrot will also help to expel toxins and infection so that your pain is also expelled. You can use one or both of these vegetable remedies every 3 hours until you get relief.