What to do if your ear hurts
One of the most unpleasant and excruciating pains is rightly considered an ear pain. It is able to completely disrupt night sleep and significantly degrade the quality of life. Therefore, the first desire that occurs in a person who is faced with a painful symptom is to get rid of unpleasant sensations as soon as possible. And here most often serious mistakes are made. So what should you do if your ear hurts? And how to determine the causes of pathology?
A bit about the ear itself
In order to understand which departments and problems are in question, you need to carefully study the structure of the ear. This is a rather complex body, which includes three departments:
Outer ear. This zone includes everything that can be considered without any additional devices. This is a conch and a visible ear canal.
Middle ear. The invisible part, consisting of the tympanic cavity and auditory ossicles. This section is protected by the temporal bone.
Inner ear. The most complex department, consisting of bone canals. It provides the conversion of incoming sounds into impulses that are transmitted to the brain and are recognized there. In addition, there is the vestibular apparatus responsible for the coordination and balance of the person.
Ear hurts: the main causes
Ear diseases are not uncommon. Almost every person, at least once in his life, was faced with a painful sensation. The causes of ear pathologies are many. And each disease needs its own treatment. That is why it is very dangerous to independently diagnose the disease and start therapy.
If you do not want to face the unpleasant consequences of improper treatment, then start the fight against ear disease with a visit to the ENT.
Pain in the outer ear: causes
Diseases of this department are usually associated with infection. Microorganisms can easily attack the outer ear. However, do not be too afraid of infections, because with strong immunity, the body will give a worthy rebuff. Another common source of the problem is injury. Incorrect cleaning of the ear canal, various bumps and damage can lead to an inflammatory process.
You can injure your ear while cleaning your ears.
The main symptoms of external lesion are the following symptoms:
itching in the auricle;
pain (most often acute);
movement of the jaws causes increased pain;
touching the sink is accompanied by increased discomfort.
The following diseases can lead to pain in the outer ear:
Otitis externa. Most often, this disease has a bacterial nature. However, there are other types of otitis (for example, fungal). The patient has complaints of pain, tinnitus, a feeling of congestion. Hearing impairment is possible. In severe cases, otitis media is accompanied by fever and purulent discharge.
Furuncle. An abscess may form in the auricle. At the initial stage, it causes severe itching. Then pain begins to appear. It can radiate to the head. Sensations are greatly enhanced when you click on the tragus. When palpating, there is a swelling like a giant pimple.
Injuries. They can be obtained as a result of chopped, cut, thermal, gunshot, chemical damage. Such injuries are usually well visible. If the ear canal is damaged, a person complains of severe ear congestion, pain. Sometimes bleeding may occur.
In addition, pain in the outer ear may indicate a sulfur plug, the presence of a tumor, and a foreign body. Sometimes a similar symptom may manifest eczema.
Middle ear pain
This department communicates with the external ear and nasopharynx. Accordingly, diseases can “come” from both sides. Pathological processes developing in the middle ear can negatively affect the condition of other organs and tissues. For example, otitis media of the middle ear can be complicated by paresis of the facial nerve or provoke the development of meningitis.
The following symptoms indicate pathology in the middle ear:
shooting pain in the ear;
sensation of ripple;
hearing impairment in the affected ear;
autophony (strong and unusual perception of one’s own voice).
With an ear disease, a person perceives his voice unusually
Ear pain may indicate the development of the following pathologies:
acute inflammation of the middle ear (OVSU);
tumors in the region of the tympanic cavity;
injuries and perforations of the eardrum;
impaired functioning of the auditory tube.
Sometimes ear pain occurs after swimming or diving. Both the outer ear (as a result of infection through water) and the middle (with excessive water pressure during diving) can be affected.
Problems in the inner ear
With damage to the inner ear, pain is extremely rare. Most often, such pathologies proceed quite “silently.”
For diseases of the internal department, the following symptoms are characteristic:
lack of coordination;
difficulty maintaining balance;
noise (or ringing) in the ears;
progressive hearing impairment;
Common diseases of the inner ear are:
labyrinthitis (infectious and inflammatory process);
sensorineural hearing loss (damage to the apparatus that perceives sound waves)