4 November 2005

Acute otitis media

It is a middle-ear inflammation, usually caused by an infection that blocks the Eustachian tube. The resulting pain is highly distressful to young children... and their parents.

Otitis media is extremely common – seen most often in children 6 to 36 months of age. Up to one-third of the child population will have 6 or more episodes before starting school, and some can have up to 12 episodes in a year.

Scientific studies have shown little evidence of shorter duration of symptoms, fewer recurrences or better long-term outcomes for children given antibiotics for their acute otitis media than for those who did not receive the medication. Moreover, researchers have found that giving so many children so much antibiotic medication poses a serious risk to the youngsters and to their community. It promotes the emergence of strains of microbes that are resistant to the very antibiotics that are being used.

A chiropractic treatment plan featuring gentle adjustments and light neck massage appropriate for very young children, offers hope for comforting relief – without recourse to heavy use of antibiotics or surgery. Chiropractic upper-spine adjustments and massage of the tissue surrounding the ear can help clear the Eustachian tube blockage that causes otitis media. Dietary/nutritional guidance may also be offered. The chiropractic approach is an alternative to traditional medical treatments that may be less effective and involve serious side effects.