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Ouch Mom, My Ear Hurts! Dealing with Ear Infections in Children

How can you tell if your child may be suffering from an ear infection? Ear infections are painful, so if your child is complaining of pain in his ear, it could very well mean an infection. If your child is too young to talk, the AAP offers some signs to look for, such as:

  • Indications of pain. Your child may tug on his ears. He may also cry and become irritable, particularly during feeding, when sucking and swallowing can cause painful changes in ear pressure.
  • Loss of appetite. Your child may not want to eat due to ear pain.
  • Trouble sleeping.
  • Fever, ranging from 100° (normal) to 104° F.
  • Ear drainage. You may see a yellow, white, or blood-tinged fluid drain from your child's ear. If this happens, it isn't an emergency, but your child will need to see his pediatrician.
  • Trouble hearing. Your child may have trouble hearing for up to a few weeks after an ear infection. This will clear up when the excess fluid in the middle ear drains.


  • Next: Treatments >>
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