Dr. İclal Şan emphasized that children who have middle ear inflammation, especially in winter, should be referred to an ear, nose, throat specialist and audiologist without losing time and evaluated in terms of hearing functions.
Inflammation of the middle ear is one of the most common diseases in early infancy and childhood. When this disease is left untreated, it can result in perforation of the eardrum and turn into a chronic disease. Middle ear inflammation, which occurs in autumn and winter with the preparation of cold diseases such as colds and flu, is more common especially in children who start kindergarten or primary school. Although the disease, which manifests itself with ear pain or toothache, usually goes away on its own, it may require treatment from time to time. Konya Chamber of Commerce (KTO) Karatay University School of Health Sciences Department of Audiology Lecturer Dr. İclal Şan gave information about the most common symptoms of ear inflammation. Dr. İclal Şan said, "Although the symptoms of middle ear inflammation are seen differently in every child, children usually have unusual irritability, restlessness, difficulty sleeping or staying asleep, high fever, ear discharge, ear pain, weakness, loss of appetite, loss of balance or difficulty in hearing. When these symptoms are observed, it is necessary to see a specialist doctor immediately."
İclal Şan said that approximately 80 percent of children who have reached the age of 3 have middle ear inflammation, "Some situations increase the likelihood of children having middle ear inflammation. Smoking environments, a weak immune system, insufficient breastfeeding, bottle feeding while lying on your back increase the risk of disease in children. In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination, audiologists can detect changes in middle ear pressure by evaluating middle ear function. In addition, a pure sound audiometry test can be performed to evaluate hearing functions."
Emphasizing that without antibiotic treatment, the symptoms of middle ear inflammation can resolve spontaneously in 60 percent of children within 24 hours and in 80 percent within 3 days, Şan said, "Antibiotic treatment can be applied according to the course of the disease for children older than 6 months and children younger than 2 years of age with severe symptoms such as ear pain and high fever that last at least 48 hours in moderate or severe degree. In middle ear infections lasting more than 3 months, it is recommended to place a small apparatus called 'ventilation tube' that provides air entry and exit and discharge of fluid in the middle ear. After the fluid is drained, the child's hearing usually returns to normal limits and the tubes usually fall off on their own after 6-12 months."
Noting that untreated middle ear inflammation may cause infection in other parts of the head, severe hearing loss, problems in speech and language development, Şan said, "Therefore, children who have middle ear inflammation, especially in winter, should be referred to an otolaryngologist, audiologist and audiologist without losing time and evaluated in terms of hearing functions. This situation is important in terms of early diagnosis."