A few weeks ago, Viviana had her first ear infection. She had a cold the previous week, which kept lingering in spite of giving her garlic and Echinacea. Within a couple days on that she was feeling much better, but the congestion held on. About a week later, she woke up one night screaming, which doesn’t usually happen for her. She almost always just whimpers or “calls”, and I nurse her back to sleep in a short period of time. I nursed her, but she continued to cry. I wasn’t sure what was wrong with her, but Ben offered to walk her for awhile and see if that calmed her down, as it’s something he’s done in the past when she gets worked up. She fell asleep a few times, always to wake up 15 or so minutes later screaming. At that point, we knew something was hurting her, and Ben suggested her ears. This made perfect sense- at her age, it’s all too easy for fluid to make its way to the ears, the lingering congestion would be the perfect cause, and it would explain why she wasn’t crying quite so much when walking (due to being held upright). Ben made a heroic midnight run to Walmart for children’s tylonel, and I put some garlic ear drops in her ears. I don’t like using synthetic pain relievers, but nothing else was working, and I felt like I needed to help relieve her pain if it was hurting so much that she couldn’t sleep at all. Prior to taking the tylonel, the most she would sleep at a time was 15 minutes, which wasn’t giving her the vital rest her body needed. I also gave it to her twice the following day, but didn’t do any after that. I spent the rest of the night in the rocking chair with her, and the next day she took most of her naps on me. By the second day, I noticed huge improvement, and by the third day, she was acting almost completely herself again. By 5 or 6 days, she was 100% healthy. For a solid week, I gave her garlic and Echinacea 6-8 times a day, and did the garlic ear drops a minimum of 4 times a day.
Ear infections can be a scary thing to deal with….especially since they can involve some large complications if you don’t get rid of the fluid. They’re also extremely painful, and as a parent, it’s heart-wrenching to see your munchkin experience so much pain. But you can have excellent success treating ear infections at home, instead of going for the typical antibiotic. It was really neat to see how effectively the garlic worked- we haven’t had a lick of trouble with her ears since! My Dad, a biology professor, mentioned that from a biologist and medical point of view, while antibiotics typically do work, garlic ear oil works much more efficiently. This is because when you put garlic in the ear, this amazing healing food is getting directly where it needs to, immediately. On the other hand, an antibiotic has to go through the entire body- destroying probiotics and breaking down the immune system as it goes along- before it gets to the organ that needs healing. This is not only a waste of time, it also breaks down the rest of the body. Like my husband described, it’s kind of like blowing up a whole town just to kill one household.
On a side note, antibiotics do have their place, and I’m not entirely opposed to them. I think there’s cases where natural healing isn’t working fast enough and you’re dealing with something too serious to mess around with.
So, if you’re going to forgo the doctor trip, what do you do, and how do you know the ear’s infected anyway?
We didn’t know for certain that Viviana’s ears were infected. Everything pointed to that, but we couldn’t see and know for sure. However, unlike antibiotics, if her ears had happened to be healthy, garlic ear oil wasn’t going to hurt them. In fact, using garlic ear oil during a cold can be a good preventative. My family owns and makes good use of a Dr. Mom otoscope, which allows you to see inside the ear, just like a doctor. This is a good determiner if you want to know whether the ear’s healthy, fluid-filled, or infected.
Next, treat rigorously with garlic ear oil drops, as well as garlic internally. Heat your bottle of ear drops in hot water, till they’re neutral or slightly warm when dropped on your wrist. Make sure you don’t burn the small ear- but you don’t want to shock it with cold liquid, either. Drop one to two drops in the ear, and place a small piece of cotton ball in the opening to help keep the liquid from spilling out. You don’t have to leave this in very long, just 5-15 minutes.
Consistency is the key, and it’s something I can be rather bad about remembering. I used Vivi’s sleep and wake times to remind me to “drug” her, as I was desperately adamant about seeing this one through consistently, and totally kicking the cold/ear infection.
Garlic isn’t guaranteed to get rid of all the fluid, though all its healing properties do help immensely. However, antibiotics don’t necessarily either- lots of people go on repeat or long-term doses of antibiotics, in failed attempts to get rid of lingering fluid, which can cause permanent problems. Even though garlic isn’t guaranteed to get rid of all the fluid, keep at it for a solid week or longer- several days after the issues seem to have dissolved. Towards the end, you can cut down to 2 or 3 times a day, if the congestion has disappeared and the ear seems to be healthy.
My Mom purchases this garlic ear oil which has been really effective. Since I didn’t have any on hand last year when I had some minor issues (which the garlic took care of within a couple uses), I made my own, which has worked effectively as well. All I did was cover several cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped into small pieces, in olive oil and heat on very low for about 4 hours. Then I let it cool, and strained it through a cheese cloth. I store it in a bottle with a dropper lid. You can also use the same technique, but instead of heating it, let it sit in the sun for several days. I needed the ear oil immediately, so I didn’t have time to try this method. I also used this oil on my breast when fighting mastitis this last summer.
All the information in the health realm can get pretty confusing, which is rather intimidating. However, it’s always worth it to do your own research- your family’s health, well-being, and life-span are all at stake here. I know I have much to learn, and I’ve been blessed to learn some of what I do know from others who’ve already done the homework. That’s one great benefit to finding others who enjoy natural healing- you can swap homework results. :-)
May your journey into natural healing be blessed!