Can Ear Infections Cause Permanent Hearing Loss? (And Other FAQs)

Ear infections are a common childhood illness, and many kids will suffer from this type of disorder at least once. If you'd like to learn more about this common health issue, then keep reading to learn the answers to common questions emergency pediatricians hear about childhood earaches and ear infections.

Can ear infections cause permanent hearing loss?

The answer to this question is yes, but only in rare cases. Ear infections are quite common during childhood, and temporary hearing loss caused by buildup in the ear is not unusual.

My child says her ear hurts. What's wrong?

There are a number of potential causes for earaches, but the most common of these are ear infections. If your child is in pain, then consider bringing her to her pediatrician or a pediatric urgent care center for an examination.

Does my child have an ear infection?

An earache is the most common indicator of an ear infection. The pain from the earache can be dull and continuous or sharp and sudden. Your child may also feel like something is in her ear or experience muffled hearing, nausea, or ear drainage. Some other signs to watch for include tugging at her ear, increased crankiness when lying down, poor balance, and fever.

What causes childhood ear infections?

In kids, ear infections typically develop when a respiratory infection causes fluid to get trapped in the middle ear. If the fluid becomes infected with bacteria or a virus, this can result in an ear infection.

Does my child need to see a doctor about her ear infection?

If your child shows signs of an ear infection for more than a day or when she is fewer than 6 months old, then consider bringing her to her pediatrician. Also, consider having her see a doctor for a diagnosis if she displays irritability while getting over a respiratory infection or complains of pain.

Pediatrics After Hours has 4 locations that each offer urgent care in the DFW area. To find out more about our locations or emergency pediatric care services, please call (214) 363-7242.

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