Infant Ear Infection Pain
Otitis media is the most common illness seen by pediatricians.1 By age 3, 80% of all children will have had at least one ear infection, and more than 40% of all children will have had 3 or more infections.1
Advise parents to look for common symptoms2:
- Pulling or tugging on the ear
- Fussiness or increased crying
- Fluid coming out of the ear
“Watchful waiting” recommended for otitis media in children3,4
In March 2013, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) published an update to clinical practice guidelines for managing acute otitis media. The update extends the recommended approach of watchful waiting for patients as young as 6 months.
Encourage parents to keep an eye on their child’s ears to see if the infection resolves without an antibiotic. Let them know that:
- 70% of ear infections get better within a few days
- Limiting antibiotic use helps ensure medicine works when it’s needed most
- When antibiotics are used too often, the bacteria they’ve been designed to kill in your body can adapt and grow stronger over time, which makes it harder for the antibiotic to fight
- Antibiotics can have side effects
Pain from ear infections can be treated with an OTC pain reliever3
To treat the pain associated with ear infections, the AAP and the American Academy of Family Physicians recommend use of an over-the-counter (OTC) pain reliever—like TYLENOL® or MOTRIN®—as stand-alone treatment or in combination with antibiotics.