The common treatment or ear infection (otitis media) in the US isantibiotics and tympanostomy (ear tubes). Some physicians in this country believe that antibiotics are overused. An article appearing in Family Practice News (6/15/96) blames the overuse of antibiotics on otitis media for the increase in drug-resistant strains of bacteria. The article notes that resistant strains increased from 6% to 20% between 1992-1995, when 85% of the patients received prescription antibiotics.
The Dutch have another view on treatment for ear infection. They use decongestants instead of antibiotics (unless it’s the last resort), and through research, have correlated most ear infections with allergies. Another study showed that supplementing children with low levels of EPA (found in fish oil), vitamin A, and selenium had 12% fewer days where they required antibiotics. Other natural treatments including Chiropractic care have also been shown throughout the years to help relieve ear infections in children.
The use of “ear tubes” is another treatment in question. Not only have studies found tubes ineffective, but they can even lead to hearing loss. A 5 year study of 98 children who had one tube placed in a single ear found that after the 5 year follow-up, there was a 21% higher incidence of deafness in the treated ear.
The approach in the US for treating ear infection mostly consists of antibiotics and ear tubes, which have been shown over years of research to not only be ineffective, but can also be harmful to the child. It is becoming clear that automatically prescribing antibiotics for a child with otitis media may not be a good idea. Antibiotics are only effective in about 14% of the cases and the practice of placing tubes may not be wise.
Natural treatments including Chiropractic care can provide relief of ear infections in children without harmful drugs or surgeries.