What do I need to know about caring for someone with acute otitis media?

Acute otitis media can make babies and children feverish, achy, and irritable. After a visit to the doctor, a warm, damp compress can be placed over the infected ear to help ease the pain.

To alleviate the symptoms of a fever, which can include head and body aches, sleeplessness, weakness, vomiting, diarrhea, and crankiness, an over-the-counter analgesic, or pain reliever, may be taken. Use these drugs cautiously and take note that aspirin should never be given to children under the age of 16 years because of the risk of Reyes syndrome.

Sometimes young children can be distracted with relaxing and quiet activities, such as listening to a story or playing card games. Getting lots of rest is also an important step on the road to recovery.

For adults with acute otitis media, rest, and analgesics can alleviate discomfort. In both children and adults, it is important to follow your doctor's instructions and report any changes.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.