Young children always get acute otitis media. Is there something wrong?

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  • Source:Lexie Hearing Aids

When the seasons change, the otolaryngology clinic often receives anxious parents holding their children. There is no other reason. The child cries intermittently in the middle of the night, complains of earache, or points his finger at the ear and cries. After careful questioning of the medical history, children often have a history of nasal congestion, runny nose or upper respiratory tract infection. Examination reveals that the child has acute otitis media, and some even have purulent secretions or secretory otitis media.

Children always get acute otitis media, is there something wrong?

The normal middle ear is an air-containing cavity, and the fluid produced will flow to the nasal cavity through a tube, which is larger than the Eustachian tube. As shown in the figure, when the Eustachian tube is blocked, fluid accumulates in the middle ear and cannot be discharged into the nasal cavity through the Eustachian tube, gradually forming middle ear effusion, which is secretory otitis media. Therefore, obstruction of the Eustachian tube is the main culprit of secretory otitis media.

Common causes of otitis media:
1. After catching a cold, bacteria invade the middle ear through the Eustachian tube and cause infection;
2. Parents smoke, Smoking by parents may also cause acute otitis media in babies. This is mainly because smoking can cause systemic arteriosclerosis, especially when the nicotine in cigarettes enters the blood, causing small blood vessels to spasm, increasing the viscosity of the blood, and causing the arterioles that supply blood to the inner ear to harden, thus causing The occurrence of acute otitis media.
3. Upper respiratory tract infection, acute infectious diseases, swimming, blowing the nose forcefully, and infants and young children lying on their backs sucking milk can cause acute otitis media;
4. Trauma, the eardrum is a very thin and sensitive tissue , it is easy to get injured in daily life. If cotton swabs, fingers or other foreign objects are placed deep in the ear canal, it is easy to scratch the eardrum, causing inflammation and pain, and may even cause tympanic membrane rupture, which will cause serious harm. of.
5. There is a tube (Eustachian tube) between each of our ears and the nasopharyngeal cavity. One end of the Eustachian tube opens on the side of the nasopharynx behind the nasal cavity, and the other opening is in the middle ear cavity. Under normal circumstances, the opening of the Eustachian tube maintains the normal pressure of otitis media. At the same time, the ciliary movement of the Eustachian tube removes the fluid in the middle ear cavity and Bacteria are excreted into the nasopharynx.

6. Swimming. If the baby does not take any protective measures when swimming, water can easily enter the baby's ears. If the swimming pool is not properly cleaned, bacteria in the water will enter the body through the nose and mouth, causing acute otitis media. happened.

7. The Eustachian tube in children is shorter and flatter than that in adults, so the incidence of otitis media is higher than in adults. Children with cleft palate are more susceptible to otitis media.

The first symptoms of otitis media are fever, earache and ear discomfort. Babies who are too young may not express themselves and may become restless or pull at the infected ear. They may also experience nausea and vomiting. If the eardrum is perforated, secretions will flow out. In addition, otitis media is often accompanied by fever. If otitis media is complicated by fluid accumulation, the ears will feel swollen, and a "pop" or "pop" sound will be heard when swallowing or there will be an echo when speaking. If it is already chronic otitis media, the eardrum will become thickened and scarred, the activity of the eardrum will decrease, and even cholesteatoma will develop in the middle ear cavity. At this time, surgical treatment is needed.

If otitis media is not treated in time, it may turn into chronic otitis media, which will not only make treatment more difficult, but may also cause serious damage to the patient’s hearing. Big impact. Therefore, parents must pay attention. Once they find that their baby has symptoms of acute otitis media, it is better to go to a regular hospital as soon as possible to find out the cause, so that targeted treatment can be carried out.