Otitis media (OM) refers to inflammation of middle ear cleft. OM is not only the most common  in children but also a leading cause of hearing loss in children.

CAUSES OF Otitis media

  • Bottle feeding (breast feeding is protective)- Feeding bottle: In the supine position, bottle feeding may lead milk to enter middle ear via Eustachian tube
  • Recurrent attacks of common cold, upper respiratory tract
  • Allergy
  • Crowded living conditions
  • Poor socioeconomic status
  • Smoking by family members in the home
  • Siblings having OM
  • Viral infections in the home and daycare centers
  • Heredity and genetic factors
  • Cleft palate
  • Immunodeficiency
  • Ciliary dyskinesia
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Down’s syndrome
  • Reduced immunity
  • Malnourishment
  • Poor dietary habits
  • Too much physical and mental exertion
  • Exposure to extremes of climate and temperatures, can affect the overall resistance of the persons and infections can occur easily
  • Barotrauma: Atmospheric pressure changes especially during flying and deep water diving can affect Eustachian tube
  • Exanthematous fevers: Measles, diphtheria, whooping cough
  • Palatal disorders: cleft palate and palatal palsy
  • Nasal allergy: Inhalants and foods
  • Eustachian tube: The infection in the middle ear usually reaches through the ET. Reflux from the nasopharynx into the middle ear occurs during the swallowing; nose blowing and closed-nose swallowing It is the result of negative middle ear pressure (sniffing)
  • Anatomical obstruction: Enlarged adenoids and nasopharyngeal tumors
  • Adenoiditis
  • Tonsillitis
  • Rhinitis
  • Sinusitis
  • Pharyngitis.
  • Swimming: Especially during diving, water enters in the nose under pressure. If water is infected it can spread infection to nose, sinuses and the middle ear
  • Iatrogenic: Postnasal packing and after adenoidectomy


  • Marked throbbing ear pain, which can awake the child from sleep in night
  • High degree of fever
  • Restlessness
  • Drainage of fluid from the ear
  • Trouble hearing
  • Deafness though present does not get child’s attention due to the severe ear pain.
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Nose block
  • Rhinorrhea
  • Sore throat
  • Loss of appetite
  • Refusal of feed
  • Diarrhea
  • Convulsions


  1. Acute mastoiditis
  2. Subperiosteal abscess
  3. Facial paralysis
  4. Labyrinthitis
  5. Meningitis
  6. Extradural abscess
  7. Brain abscess and lateral sinus thrombophlebitis


  • Prevent common colds and other illnesses.Teach your children to wash their hands frequently and thoroughly and to not share eating and drinking utensils. Teach your children to cough or sneeze into the crook of their arm. If possible, limit the time your child spends in group child care. A child care setting with fewer children may help. Try to keep your child home from child care or school when ill.
  • Avoid secondhand smoke.Make sure that no one smokes in your home. Away from home, stay in smoke-free environments.
  • Breast-feed your baby.If possible, breast-feed your baby for at least six months. Breast milk contains antibodies that may offer protection from ear infections.
  • If you bottle-feed, hold your baby in an upright position.Avoid propping a bottle in your baby’s mouth while he or she is lying down. Don’t put bottles in the crib with your baby.
  • Eat high fiber diet
  • Quit smoking
  • Avoid alcohol,beet nut
  • Take plenty of diet rich in vitamin A,C,D
  • Reduce salt intake
  • Avoid playing with pet animals like cat ,dog
  • Avoid Body deodorant, Perfumes, Nail Polish,Talcum Powder
  • Clean your room with wet mop
  • Clean your air conditioner filter regularly
  • Maintain ideal body weight
  • Reduce our air air pollution
  • Breast feed your children minimum 6 months.Avoid formulated artificial feed.
  • Avoid chemical pesticides, chemical fertilizer for farming




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