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Iclamae's avatar

Do you know any home remedies for ear infection?

Asked by Iclamae (2409points) October 9th, 2010

Simple version: I don’t have health insurance, so I’m asking for at home remedies. I have an ear infection in both ears.

Complicated version:
Before my health insurance went up, my primary linked the ear infections to an allergic reaction I was having to a cat shelter and something about being in a plane making it worse… I volunteered at a cat shelter with 140 cats for two days before I couldn’t handle it anymore. I’ve always had short hair cats and never showed allergies but being in a shelter with so many at once overloaded my system. Shortly after the shelter work, I adopted a medium hair kitten.
My assumption is that my body just hasn’t gotten over the initial reaction because of constant exposure to my longer hair kitten. I am hoping that I am not allergic to medium hair cats. (For those who may be concerned, the symptoms aren’t bad enough for me to consider giving him up. That’s not an issue here.)

Initial symptoms were pretty bad: hard sneezing, coughing, trouble breathing. After 6 weeks, those calmed down to what I have now.
Current symptoms are just itchy eyes, ear infections, and occasional sneezing.

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19 Answers

Cruiser's avatar

Do the NeilMed sinus rinse, gargle with diluted vinegar and put Tea Tree oil drops in your ears. A bowl or 2 of Chicken Soup a day should help too! About all I can think of and should see results in a day or two.


Try Oil of Oregano. You can buy it at health food stores or at your local pharmacy. I’ve used it before for an infection. It’s not that expensive and it has powerful anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Just a few drops in your infected ear, a few times, should help. Warm the oil first, then use a dropper to administer the dose. Here’s a testimonial from a user—- Good luck.

Iclamae's avatar

When you put these liquids in your ears, are you plugging up with cottonballs too?


@Iclamae No, just lie on your side and put the drops in. Let it flow into your ears. You might experience a little stinging at first, but then you get a soothing sensation. Don’t plug your ears with cotton. Your ear canal needs to “breathe”.


@Cruiser Sinus rinses are great. I’ve tried the Nedi-pot. Not your most pretty way to clean your sinus passages, but it works! Lol.

Aster's avatar

I thought you were supposed to dilute the oil or oregano with olive oil first? That sounds awfully strong?


@Aster I don’t dilute it. It’s strong, yes, but that’s why it’s so effective. It does sting a little, but it won’t harm your eardrums (that is, it doesn’t burn tissue). Some makers add olive oil to the oil of oregano already, for people who are very sensitive, but the olive oil sometimes goes rancid and decreases the effectiveness of the oregano. But I think most oils of oregano have olive oil as its base.

Aster's avatar

I’ve heard it can burn tissue. Especially on delicate tissues like under the tongue. The kind that has oil mixed with it is too weak but alone?? I’ve purchased the capsules and the liquid and really liked both.

Cruiser's avatar

@Aster is right about diluting the oils first….I found this here
“Add 5–10 drops of warm tea tree oil to 1 Tbsp. of olive oil, mix thoroughly and trickle a small amount into the ear as needed.”

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

An ear infection is a cause of symptoms. If you have an ear infection, the only way to heal it is through antibiotics. Itchy eyes and sneezing are not symptoms of an ear infection. If it is due to allergies, try using an allergy medication and see if it helps.

Your_Majesty's avatar

Different kind of ear infection need different medication. But just as addition to all of above suggestion here is the other method you might want to try.

incendiary_dan's avatar

It never hurts to eat a bit of extra garlic to help your body fight off the infection. This can aid in the healing of most types of infections I know of. Crushed garlic is better than any other preparation, as it preserves/activates the most oils, so a garlic press is always a good investment.

matt2001's avatar

Pack a small clove of garlic in gauze and place into the external ear passage; or drop 4–5 drops of Oil of Garlic into the ear channel, cover with flannel, and keep warm.

ChaosCross's avatar

Buy hydrogen peroxide at a local pharmacy, pour it down infected ear and wait a minute before draining.

evonline's avatar

Allergies can cause ear infections because they cause swelling that causes fluids to be held in the middle ear. Ear infections are called “otitis”. If you enter the term “otitis” on Wikipedia you may find the information helpful. It will show a link to the Wikipedia article on middle ear infections, as well as, links to inner ear and outer ear infection articles. The information looks like it would be helpful to someone who wants to protect their hearing apparatus but if possible avoid a costly visit to a medical facility. It does indicate the way to treat at home as well as indicate when a visit to a medical facility might be a good choice. Best to you dear cat person from another cat appreciator. (I did read that when some highly regarded medical evaluators looked at the medical information on Wikipedia they found it to be very solid.)

augustlan's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer Recent studies have shown that up to 80% of ear infections resolve on their own, without antibiotics.
Some ear infections will safely clear up on their own without antibiotics. Often, treating the pain and allowing the body time to heal itself is all that is needed:

* Apply a warm cloth or warm water bottle to the affected ear.
* Use over-the-counter pain relief drops for ears, or ask the doctor about prescription ear drops to relieve pain.
* Take over-the-counter medications for pain or fever, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Do NOT give aspirin to children.


Iclamae's avatar

Thanks very much guys for your suggestions.

I was hoping it would go away on its own but I’ve had the ear infections since July. So I think there’s no hope of it going away on its own.

I eat plenty of garlic right now so I hope that’s helping somewhat.

I’ll look into over the counter allergy and ear meds. That completely slipped my mind. The allergy meds my doc gave me samples of in July, Clarinex and a nasal spray, didn’t seem to help a whole lot but I’ll see what else they’ve got.

I remembered my mom putting hydrogen peroxide in my ears as a kid… so I was considering that as something to maybe make a dent in the infection.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

That is a long time to go with ear problems, and from all that you have shared, it sounds like it is allergy-related. I have Eustachian tube dysfunction, which is a build-up of fluid typically caused by scar tissue from childhood inner ear infections. Normally, an over-the-counter product will clear it up in a couple of days. When it gets to the point where there is constant pain and I cannot bite down, then it is time to visit the doctor.

augustlan's avatar

Since July? That is a long time. If you don’t get relief soon, you may just have to bite the bullet and go to the doctor for an antibiotic. I know it sucks trying to get healthcare when you don’t have insurance, but sometimes you just have to, you know? Make sure you inform the doc that you don’t have insurance, and want the cheapest antibiotic that will work. Many drugstores are selling them for really low prices these days.

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