Friday, June 17, 2011

Home Remedy To Cure An Ear Infection

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In a battle against the necessity of running to the doctor for prescription medications, I fought (and won) the war against my raging ear infection.  My only arsenal was apple cider vinegar, olive oil and cotton swabs.
About a week ago I noticed some pain under my chin in my jaw area.  It was awful and made it nearly impossible to eat. It took me nearly three hours to eat a burger.  You'd think that I would have given up and had soup instead but I'm no quitter.
That pain then shifted to my ears, causing soreness and throbbing and itching.  Then my lymph nodes got swollen and finally my throat felt like I'd been scratching it with a cheese grater.  And since I've felt this pain before, it was familiar.  An ear infection.
Those things hurt!  A lot! And this is coming from a woman who gave birth to children without the use of pain medication! Big babies that came out side ways!  Ear infections, at least mine, are dibilitating.
When I had my last ear infection I went to  see my general practitioner who prescribed me a round of antibiotics and ear drops that cost about ten million dollars.  I had to go three times to see him and the only thing I got out of it was a side dish of yeast to go with my delicious ear infection.
He eventually referred me to a specialist who gave me a high potent round of medicine which took five days to erradicate the infection from my head.  Normally, I'm completely against medications but I was in so much pain that I would have swimmed laps in a pool of antibiotics if it promised to make me feel better.  I remember showing up to the specialists office wearing pajama pants with a nightgown over it, a sweater covering the night gown, boots, a scarf and no bra.  I don't think I've ever been in so much agony and I came very close to rupturing both ear drums and having permanent hearing damage in both ears.
Fast forward a few years to last week and there I was again with an ear infection.  This time I decided that instead of going to the doctor, I would try a natural approach.  I once read in a home remedy book that you could treat ear infections by putting apple cider vinegar on a cotton ball and pouring it into your ears.
So I did.  I warmed up a little AC vinegar, dabbed a cotton ball in it, turned my head sideways and squeezed the cotton ball until my ear canal filled with vinegar.  It itched but I let it sit there for about a minute on each ear. Then I turned my head and let it all pour out and dried my ear gently.
I followed this up by dabbing another cotton ball into some olive oil and putting that into my ear and left it there. The pain was gone within five minutes.  By the way, I found that there are many homeopathic ways to treat an ear infection.  Some include onions and potatoes but I found that with this method there was the added bonus of smelling like salad dressing.
I did look ridiculous and my kids pointed and laughed at me with my ears filled with cotton.  They made fun of me but all I cared about was that the pain was gone and the cotton balls muffled their voices.  I found this to be rather adventageous because when they would ask for an extra helping of ice cream or beg to stay up for an extra hour at bed time I would just point to my ears and say, "WHAT? I can't hear you!"
I did this treatment about three times a day for five days and I could feel my infection running it's course.  When my ears hurt I would put warm compress on them.  When my throat got sore, I gargled with salt water.  And guess what? The infection is gone!
It took five days, which would have been the standard treatment with antibiotics anyway.  Only this way I didn't put chemicals into my body, it didn't take much time and it didn't cost me a cent.  I made sure I got plenty of fluids, rested as much as possible and treated myself with care and love and olive oil and I never crossed the threshold of a doctor's office.
That's not to say that I'm against doctors.  I totally respect them and I think that modern medicine has a lot to offer.  I just think that many times we are quick to rush to the doctor's office for medicine that our bodies really don't need.  There is a time and a place for antibiotics and other medications.
Plus, I worry that there is much we don't know about the long term affects of all of our drugs.  I also don't want to set the example for my kids that they should be running for the pain meds at the first sign of discomfort.
I'm concerned with what I put into my body.  And here's the funny thing about that;  I steer away from medications.  I refuse to put toxic chemicals on my lawn.  I won't clean my house with chemical cleaners, I use the dye free kind of detergents and I try to buy as much organic food as possible.  All of that yet if you offered me a Twinkie, I'd totally take it! *rolls eyes at self*