An earache is often, though not always, preceded by a cold and can be a problem for children and adults. Children seem to get earaches more often, but an earache can affect anyone. What typically happens is that fluid accumulates in the Eustachian tubes, which puts pressure on the eardrum, and it's this pressure that causes the pain. If you have an earache and can't get to a doctor right away, then you may want to try some of these earache home remedies.
The following remedies are not meant to be medical advice, so always check with your doctor before trying any of them.
1. Warm air, such as in using a hair dryer set on the lowest temperature setting, can gently warm the ear and bring relief in a few minutes. If you do use a hair dryer, do not hold it too close to the ear, and be sure the fan is set to its minimum speed. You want to warm the ear, not cook it!
2. A heating pad can also be used to warm the ear. Wrap a towel around it first, as you don't want it to have direct contact with the skin, and then place it on the outside of the ear that is giving the problem. You can use a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel if you don't have a heating pad.
3. Place a few drops of warm garlic oil in the problematic ear. This will serve as a mild antibiotic and often brings relief. Placing a piece of gauze on the outside of the ear will help to trap the oil so it can do a more thorough job. Gently rinse the ear with clean, warm water after five to ten minutes.
4. You can also use another oil, if you don't want to use garlic oil. A couple drops of warmed olive oil or mineral oil put in the ear can bring relief. However, be very careful that you don't overheat the oil. It should never be warmer than body temperature; otherwise you run the risk of burning your ear which will only add insult to injury.
While everybody is different, some people find they are more susceptible to earaches after eating dairy products. You can try eliminating all dairy from your diet for a few days to see if that does the trick.
If the pain doesn't go away after trying these earache home remedies, then you should visit your doctor. It's possible that you have an ear infection which may require additional treatment. An earache if left untreated can lead to more serious problems. In other words, it's not something you should ignore.