Ear disorders are common in children. Children are more prone to ear infections because their immune systems are not fully developed. The ear is a complex organ and has three parts: the outer ear, middle ear and inner ear. Ear infections are usually caused by microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses.
Ear infections can be painful and cause fevers. In some cases, the pain is so severe that the child cannot sleep or eat and has to be hospitalized. Infections usually worsen because they are not treated. Children with recurrent ear infections are more prone to permanent damage to the middle ear and may also develop hearing loss.
The most common causes of ear infection in children are:
- Temperature changes, such as swimming or a cold wind
- Irritation to the ear
- Poor hygiene
- An upper respiratory infection
- Nasal congestion
Otitis Media (Ear infections) in Children