The American Lung Association reports that the normal adult gets as many as four colds every year. That’s a lot even if the majority of colds are minor viral infections. It doesn’t matter what part of the body the virus attacks, if it results in congestion, it can cause an ear infection.
There are certain cold symptoms you don’t want to ignore despite the fact that colds are normally thought to be harmless. The link between the common cold and ear infections has finally been confirmed by researchers. This is a significant finding, because ear infections are a major contributing factor in the troubling rise in antibiotic resistance.
Symptoms You Should Never Ignore
It’s really ordinary to feel congested in your ears when you have a cold because your sinuses and ears are connected. Typically, this feeling comes and goes, particularly if you’re using a decongestant and your head is draining out fluids. But congestion can turn into an ear infection in just a few hours. This is the reason that if you have pain or discharge in your ears you need to get professional assistance.
Pain is a sign that your cold is moving in the wrong direction and can be evidence of inflammation or infection. If you take care of it early enough, you can get a prescription for antibiotics and avoid permanent damage. If it’s ignored, it can lead to scarring on the eardrum and possibly damage to the cilia from inflammation.
Is this very serious? Normally, cold related hearing loss is only temporary. Injury to your eardrum or cilia, however, can result in permanent hearing loss…which can lead to other health problems.
Hearing Loss Can Harm Your General Health
Loss of cognitive capacity, depression, an increase in accidents, and other health problems have been connected to loss of hearing. An increase in healthcare costs has been linked with loss of hearing by researchers recently. As a matter of fact, in only a decade, untreated hearing loss can increase your healthcare expenses by 46%.
Your likelihood of requiring hospitalization with untreated hearing loss increases by 50%….and also increase the probability of being readmitted.
It adds up each time your ears take even minor injury. Even slight hearing loss can, Johns Hopkins found, double your chances of getting dementia. Think about the fact that each time you have an ear infection it can cause scarring that leads to significant hearing loss over time.
Suffering From Pain for Days?
Have you already neglected ear pain for days? Get treatment immediately. Don’t make the common mistake of waiting too long. Most health insurance companies consider symptoms of an ear infection or ear pain an emergency and there’s a good reason for that. If you feel pain in your ear when you have a cold or after a cold schedule a hearing exam. A professional evaluation can tell you whether:
- there is any affect on your inner ear
- there is injury to the eardrum that should be addressed
- you currently have an ear infection
Pain or temporary loss of hearing can be caused by a blockage in the ear that can also be determined by a professional ear examination.
Ear pain or chronic loss of hearing are certain signs that you need to consult a professional. Schedule an appointment now.