A study by The American Lung Association states that the average 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 symptoms of a cold you don’t want to ignore even though colds are usually thought to be harmless. Researchers have finally confirmed the suspected connection between ear infections and the common cold. This is a significant finding, because ear infections are a major contributing factor in the disturbing rise in antibiotic resistance.
Symptoms You Should Never Ignore
It’s really common to feel stuffed up in your ears when you have a cold because your sinuses and ears are linked. If you’re taking a decongestant, and your head is draining fluids, this feeling normally comes and goes. But congestion can develop into an ear infection in just a few hours. This is the reason that if you have pain or discharge in your ears you should get professional advice.
Pain can be an indication of inflammation and infection and is a signal your cold is moving in the wrong direction. If you take care of it early enough, you can get a prescription for antibiotics and avoid permanent damage. It can result in eardrum scaring and might damage the cilia if dismissed.
Is this very serious? Usually, cold related hearing loss is only temporary. Damage to your eardrum or cilia, however, can result in permanent hearing loss…which can lead to other health issues.
Loss of Hearing Can Impact Your Overall Health
Hearing loss has been connected to other health issues, from loss of cognitive capability to depression to a rise in accidents. Researchers have recently shown a connection between hearing loss and more expensive healthcare costs. In fact, in just ten years, neglected hearing loss can raise your healthcare costs by 46%.
Loss of hearing can also raise your likelihood of needing hospitalization by 50%….and the chance of needing to be readmitted also increases.
Even minor injury can add up. Even mild hearing loss can, Johns Hopkins found, double your risk of getting dementia. Think about the fact that every time you get an ear infection it can lead to scarring that leads to considerable hearing loss over time.
Have You Had Ear Pain For Several Days?
Have you been suffered from ear pain for days and neglected it? Seek treatment right away. Don’t make the normal mistake of putting it off. The majority of health insurance companies consider symptoms of an ear infection or ear pain an emergency and there’s good reason for that. It’s necessary to get your ear checked out if you had any pain during your cold or are still experiencing difficulty hearing after your cold has cleared. If you schedule a hearing exam you can find out if:
- there is injury to the eardrum that needs to be addressed
- your inner ear is affected
- you currently have an infection
Pain or temporary loss of hearing can be caused by a blockage in the ear which can also be determined by a professional ear exam.
Ear pain or prolonged hearing loss are sure signs that you need to consult a professional. Schedule an appointment right away.