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Ear Drum Perforations: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Dr. Sarika Verma 88% (60 ratings)
MBBS Bachelor of Medicine & Bachelor of Surgery, Diploma In Otorhinolaryngology (DLO), DNB - ENT, Allergy Testing
ENT Specialist, Gurgaon
Ear Drum Perforations: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Ear drum is a thin curtain-like tissue that separates the inner ear from the middle and outer ear. If this ear drum is somehow punctured, then that condition is referred to as an ear drum perforation. The ear drum can get perforated for a variety of reasons, but here are the major causes for the same.

Causes Of Ear Drum Perforations

  1. Infection- An ear infection can alleviate into an ear drum perforation. Usually, the infected area may undergo inflammation to such a degree that it may puncture the ear drum. Normally, in case of ear drum perforations due to infections, the pus from the infection drops out of the ear.
  2. Foreign object- Inserting a foreign object inside the ear in a bid to scratch or clear the area can damage the ear drum. Avoid using Q-tips and other foreign items to scratch the ear.
  3. Barotrauma- This is a condition when the air pressure on the outer ear is not the same as the pressure inside the inner ear. Usually, barotrauma is caused when a plane changes altitude or in case of scuba divers when they make the dive deep down.
  4. Injury- Injury resulting from head trauma or a slap across the ear can sometimes cause the ear drum to rupture as well.

Symptoms of Ear Drum Perforation
Everyone does not experience the typical symptoms that are associated with a perforated ear drum. Most people do not notice it at once, but may visit the doctor after several days of discomfort. People who have a perforated ear drum may also notice air coming out of their ears when they blow their nose. This happens as the forceful blow of air causes the air to rise inside the ear cavity and come out through the opening in the ear drum. Apart from these symptoms, pain in the ear, pus discharge, hearing loss and dizziness may also be caused due to the condition.

Treatment for Ear Drum Perforation
Ear drum perforation does not require a specific kind of treatment to heal. This is because the condition gets repaired by itself within a couple of months. Doctors may, at the most, prescribe antibiotics to ensure that the ear does not get infected prior to complete healing. If the condition is extremely painful, doctors may also prescribe certain over-the-counter pain medications to you. In some rare cases, surgery may be needed in order to completely mend the perforated ear drum.

Insect In Inside Ear - How To Deal With It?

Dr. Rahul Bhargava 92% (141 ratings)
Fellowship In Rhinology, MS (ENT), DNB (ENT)
ENT Specialist, Delhi
Insect In Inside Ear - How To Deal With It?

It is that that time of the year when insect are all around. Suddenly one feels a buzzing sound or an itchy feel in the ear. To your horror, one feels a live insect in the ear which can be extremely annoying and a nightmare. Insects get stuck in the ear when enter our ears as they cannot fly or crawl out. They try their way out and their movements inside our ears can be very uncomfortable, painful, and itchy. Moreover, they can easily produce infection.

In this scenario, do not try to remove an insect with cotton swabs, tweezers or hair clips as it will make situation worse and can lodge the insect deeper into ear canal damaging the eardrum, leading to permanent hearing loss. If an individual is not certain of the potential for harm in regard to insect in the ear, one should seek medical care immediately. Insects in the ear are common reasons for visits to doctor's clinic, especially in children.

If one suspects an insect in ear, one may experience pain, swelling, blood or crackling. One may even feel biting, stinging, hearing loss or dizziness. It is best to stay calm in this situation as being active may lodge the bug further in ear or cause it to move further back, or cause serious damage to the sensitive eardrum

One way to try to remove a bug in ear is by tilting the ear toward the ground and attempt to wiggle the ear. Grasp the earlobe and give it a wiggle. If the bug is not too far into ear canal, it may fall out on its own. If the bug is still alive and is not too far inside of the ear canal, it may simply come out on its own. If one stays calm and keep objects including fingers away from ears, it is likely that the bug will find its way back out of ear.

One can also try to flush the ear with warm water with a dropper or a bulb syringe. This can be done by holding head upright and stretching the ear canal by pulling the outer ear and then putting a steady stream of warm water into ear. Tilt head to the side to drain out the ear. Do not try this if one suspects that ear drum has been ruptured to prevent additional damage.

To avoid stinging or eardrum rupture from scratching or biting , one may use a drop or two of mineral, baby, or olive oil inside your ear canal to kill the insect. Finally, visit an ENT specialist doctor as they can remove the insect by special suction devices. Post insect removal, one must look out for signs of infection as swelling, dizziness, hearing loss, fever, and pain. Finally follow up with ENT specialist or Otolaryngologist for the final opinion. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3421 people found this helpful

Usher Syndrome - What Should You Know?

Dr. Geeta Kathuria 81% (10 ratings)
M.B.B.S, MS ENT, MRCS Ed ENT, Fellowship Golf
ENT Specialist, Delhi
Usher Syndrome - What Should You Know?

Usher syndrome is a genetic disorder that is characterized by complications in vision and hearing; the most common of them being partial/complete loss of hearing and retinitis pigmentosa. Retinitis pigmentosa is characterized by progressive deterioration of the retina, resulting in deprivation of peripheral vision and subsequent night blindness.

The symptoms and its rate of progression usually vary among people. Usher syndrome is classified into three types:

  • Type 1: In this type, children are born with balance issues and hearing loss problems. The symptoms of night blindness and loss of peripheral vision associated with ‘Retinitis Pigmentosa’ only appear in the early stages of adolescence.
  • Type 2: In type 2, children are born with moderate to mild hearing loss problems. Retinitis Pigmentosa develops soon after the child reaches adolescence.
  • Type 3: In type 3 Usher Syndrome, children are usually born with normal hearing skills, however, loss of hearing and Retinitis pigmentosa occur soon after puberty.

Hearing loss in Usher syndrome occurs when the nerve cells that are present in the cochlear (inner ear’s spiral cavity) are affected by genetic mutation. A similar problem occurs in the cells of the retina leading to loss of vision. These cells allow conversion of light into electrical signals for the brain to interpret them. Both the parents need to pass the mutated gene to the child for it to be affected. If the child has only one gene, then he/she rarely develops the symptoms.

This disorder does not have any prescribed course of treatments. The vision loss that occurs in this disorder can be slowed down by nutritional therapy. This therapy involves providing the body with essential amounts of vitamin A which can help in reducing vision loss. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

4093 people found this helpful

Ways to Prevent Hearing Damage!

Dr. Biswajit Banik 91% (87 ratings)
ENT Specialist, Faridabad
Ways to Prevent Hearing Damage!

Your hearing is one of the most important function your body carries out and sometimes you realize that you are losing your sense of hearing when it is too late to get it back. There are two main reasons for this. One of the reason is age and the other is when the inner ear's hair cells break down and do not pick up sound well.

Here are 7 ways to safeguard your hearing:

  1. Try to avoid loud places: It is not advisable to go to places where you have to shout to be heard, such as in a street, a concert or a construction site.
  2. Buy low noise rating equipment: The equipment in your house will make a sound that you hear the most. Try to avoid this equipment by buying appliances with a low noise rating.
  3. Wear hearing protection at loud places: However, it is true that it is not always possible to avoid loud noises. This is when you need to get hearing protection. Earplugs and earmuffs are two of the best ways to make sure that even when you are in a loud place, your hearing does not get affected. Earplugs and earmuffs generally reduce sound by 15 to 30 decibels, which may be crucial to making sure that later in your life, you do not lose your hearing.
  4. Avoid smokeSmoking raises your chance of hearing loss. Second-hand smoke does the same thing. Therefore, try to avoid, both smoking and secondhand smoking. 
  5. Avoid medications which reduce hearing: Certain medications increase the hearing loss. Therefore, double check with your doctor to make sure your medicines will not make you lose your hearing.
  6. Get your hearing tested: Finally, get your hearing tested as identifying the problem early on can help stop worsen the situation.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3827 people found this helpful

Hearing Impairment in Children and Importance of Early Intervention

Dr. Pinaki Mazumder 92% (226 ratings)
Diploma in Otorhinolaryngology (DLO), MBBS
ENT Specialist, Kolkata
Hearing Impairment in Children and Importance of Early Intervention

Deafness in children is not an uncommon phenomenon. 1-3 infants per 1000 birth is born with congenital sensory disorder. This is much higher when conductive hearing losses both congenital and acquired are taken into account. There is lack of awareness about the gravity of the problem among general population and medical fraternity.

  • Children learn to communicate by imitating the sounds they hear. Deafness in the early months of life in a child deprives this valuable sensory input. This results in non development of speech or delayed speech/language development, social problems and academic difficulties.
  • The goal of early intervention is to integrate the deaf child into the family and into society, to ensure development of normal/near normal speech and to enable the growth and development of a healthy confident child.
  • Universal neonatal hearing screening (UNHS) can diagnose babies born with deafness. They can be treated with hearing aid or cochlear implant to restore their hearing and subsequently speech language therapy started as soon as possible.
  • Early intervention results in normal or near normal speech and the affected child can be integrated into the society.
  • The parents, doctors and the society should come together and work hand in hand for achieving this goal.
1 person found this helpful

Strategies For Coping With Hearing Loss!

Dr. Madhulika Sharma 89% (38 ratings)
ENT Specialist, Delhi
Strategies For Coping With Hearing Loss!

Hearing loss is a common sensory problem that generally develops with increasing age or due to prolonged or persistent exposure to loud noises. It is one of the most typical problems that occurs throughout the world. If you are suffering from partial hearing loss, you may find ways of keeping in touch with your family and friends. If you are not suffering from such the following may help you keep your hearing intact for years to come.

Types of hearing loss:
There are two main types of hearing loss: 
1. Conductive Hearing Loss where the problem lies in the middle ear, eardrum or ossicles. A conductive hearing loss affects the passage of sound between the eardrum and the inner ear. Sound passes down the ear canal to the eardrum and through the middle ear, where the sound is transmitted across the middle ear by the three bones called the ossicles to the inner ear.

Causes of conductive hearing loss:

  1. Malformation of outer ear, ear canal, or middle ear structures
  2. Fluid in the middle ear from colds
  3. Ear infection (otitis media - an infection of the middle ear in which an accumulation of fluid may interfere with the movement of the eardrum and ossicles
  4. Allergies
  5. Poor Eustachian tube function
  6. Perforated eardrum
  7. Benign tumors
  8. Impacted earwax
  9. Infection in the ear canal
  10. Foreign body in the ear
  11. Otosclerosis

2. Sensorineural Hearing Loss where there is damage in the inner ear, cochlea or hearing nerve. Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) occurs when there is damage to the inner ear (cochlea), or to the nerve pathways from the inner ear to the brain. Most of the time, SNHL cannot be medically or surgically corrected. This is the most common type of permanent hearing loss.

Causes of sensorineural hearing loss:

  1. Exposure to loud noise
  2. Head trauma
  3. Virus or disease
  4. Autoimmune inner ear disease
  5. Hearing loss that runs in the family
  6. Aging (presbycusis)
  7. Malformation of the inner ear
  8. Meniere's Disease
  9. Otosclerosis 
  10. Tumors

Coping with Hearing Loss:
Antibiotics and eardrops are often prescribed to treat hearing loss and its symptoms. In many cases, people suffering from severe hearing loss use hearing aids. Hearing aids are tiny instruments that people use in their ears to make sounds louder. People who suffer from hearing loss cope with their problems through increased concentration and focus. The usual way involves reading the moving lips of the person while they talk. Prevention is better than cure and is the best solution to avoid long-term hearing loss. Avoiding continuous loud noises, to the possible extent helps prevent hearing loss to a great extent.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3560 people found this helpful

Causes of Hearing Loss in Hindi - बहरेपन का कारण

Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)
Ayurveda, Lakhimpur Kheri
Causes of Hearing Loss in Hindi - बहरेपन का कारण

हमारे लिए कान का महत्व काफी ज्यादा है. हलांकि कई लोग ऐसे भी जिनके पास ये विकल्प नहीं है. कुछ लोगों को प्राकृतिक रु से सुनने की क्षमता होती है और कुछ लोग अपनी गलतियों या अन्य कारणों की वजह से सुनने की क्षमता खो बैठते हैं. बहुत हल्के से शुरू होकर सुनने की समस्या धीरे-धीरे यह बहरेपन जैसी गंभीर समस्या बन जाती है. कम सुनाई देना या बिल्कुल भी सुनाई न देना बहरापन कहलाता है. सुनने में परेशानी का मतलब है किसी के द्वारा कुछ भी बोले जाने पर स्पष्ट रूप से समझने में सक्षम ना हो पाना. बहरापन सुनने की समस्या का सबसे उच्च स्तर है. ऐसे लाखों लोग हैं जो बहरेपन से पीड़ित हैं. सुनने की शक्ति ईश्वर द्वारा दिया गया विभिन्न जीवों को एक उपहार है. इसलिए हमें खुद को शिक्षित करना चाहिए कि बहरेपन के क्या कारण हो सकते हैं. इससे उपचार के विकल्पों को चुनने में भी मदद मिलेगी. सुनने में परेशानी के कई कारण हो सकते हैं उम्र बढ़ने के साथ सुनने में समस्या होना स्वाभाविक बात है. कभी-कभी अचानक हुई घटना के कारण भी सुनने में दिक्कत हो सकती है. आइए बहरेपन के कारणों को जानें.

1. आघात
आम तौर पर कई बार परिस्थितियां ऐसी बनती है कि किसी दुर्घटना की वजह से भी बहरेपन की समस्या हो सकती है. अचानक आघात जो सिर या कान की चोट से जुड़ा होता है उससे सुनवाई संबंधी हानि हो सकती है. कुछ लोगों को अचानक से सुनने में कमी का भी अनुभव होता है. इसलिए हमेशा पटाखों और अन्य कई ऐसी चीजों से दूर रहना चाहिए जिससे आपको इस परेशानी का सामना नहीं करना पड़े.
2. आनुवांशिकी
बहरेपन के कई कारणों में से एक ये भी है कि जहां माता-पिता को सुनने में परेशानी होती है वहाँ उनके बच्चों में भी बहरेपन की समस्या हो जाती है. ऐसे व्यक्तियों को बहरेपन या सुनने में परेशानी होती है जो उम्र के साथ ओर भी खराब हो सकती है. ये जन्मजात बहरापन हो जाता है. इसे न तो रोका जा सकता  है और न ही इसका इलाज करके ठीक किया जा सकता है.
3. दवाईयों का असर
दवाइयों के साइड इस्फेक्त कई बार ऐसे होते हैं जो हमें कई तरह की परेशानियों में डाल देते हैं. मधुमेह, उच्च रक्तचाप, एड्स और कुछ दिल और न्यूरोलॉजिकल रोग जैसे कुछ स्वास्थ्य विकारों से भी सुनने की क्षमता पर प्रभाव पड़ता है. इसके अलावा, कुछ एंटीबायोटिक दवाईयाँ और अन्य दवाईयाँ जैसे कीमोथेरेपी दवा भी कम सुनने के नुकसान का कारण बन सकती हैं. कान के संक्रमण से भी सुनने में परेशानी हो सकती है. कभी-कभी कान में बहुत अधिक मोम का संचय होता है जो अनुचित सुनवाई का कारण बन सकता है. शराब और तंबाकू का अत्यधिक सेवन हानिकारक है और प्रत्यक्ष या अप्रत्यक्ष रूप से यह सुनने की समस्या में शामिल किया जा सकता है.
4. बढ़ती उम्र का असर
ये एक नैचुरल कारण है. इस प्रक्रिया से सबको गुजरना पड़ता है. बढ़ते उम्र के साथ हमारे शरीर के कई अंग काम करना बंद कर देते हैं. आपने शायद यह देखा होगा कि कैसे आपके दादा-दादी को सुनने वाली मशीन के बिना सुनने में कितनी परेशानी होती है. कान के कुछ हिस्सों की क्षति के कारण उम्र से संबंधित बहरापन होना स्वाभाविक है. इस प्रकार का बहरापन काफी आम है.
5. अत्यधिक शोर
हमारे कानों के सुनने की एक निश्चित सीमा होती है. यदि आप इस सिया से बाहर जाएंगे तो आपको कई तरह की परेशानियाँ झेलनी पड़ सकती हैं. निरंतर और लंबे समय तक अत्यधिक शोर के संपर्क में रहने से धीरे-धीरे सुनने में परेशानी हो सकती है. यह बहरेपन की एक शुरुआत हो सकती है. बिना किसी सुरक्षा विकल्प के लंबे समय तक अत्यधिक शोर में रहने से कान को बहुत नुकसान हो सकता है.

3 people found this helpful

Ear Infections - Common Reasons Behind It!

ENT Specialist, Delhi
Ear Infections - Common Reasons Behind It!

Our ears are small in size, but ‘big’ in the work they do. Not only do they help us hear, but also help us maintain our body’s balance. They thus help us stand, walk, drive, you just name it.

Ears are also much bigger in size than they actually are. The part of the ear that we see on our head is only the external ear, there is a middle ear and an inner ear too, silently carrying out complex functions related to hearing and balance. The inner ear is the seat of balance. And this part is hit hard at the time of an ear infection.

Ear infections cause the Eustachian tubes – small tubes that connect the middle ear to the back of your throat – to become swollen and blocked due to excess mucus. As a result of this, fluid builds up and inflammation takes root in the middle ear, thereby causing pain.

Ear infections can be acute or chronic. Acute infections clear up in a few days, but chronic ones reoccur frequently. If not managed, chronic ear infections can cause permanent damage to the middle and inner ear.

Causes of Eustachian tube blockage are as follows:

  1. Allergies
  2. Sinus infection
  3. Cold
  4. Extreme production of mucus
  5. Smoking
  6. Infected adenoid, which is a tissue near your tonsils that traps harmful bacteria and viruses

There are a few risk factors associated with ear infections. It can be said that young children are more susceptible to these infections. This is because their Eustachian tubes are short and narrow. It has also been seen that infants who are bottle-fed have a higher incidence of ear infections than breastfed babies.

Other risk factors are:

  1. Changes in altitude
  2. Changes in climate
  3. Exposure to tobacco smoke
  4. Use of pacifiers

Symptoms of ear infections:

  1. Pain or discomfort inside the ear
  2. A prolonged feeling of pressure inside the ear
  3. Pus-like ear drainage
  4. Hearing loss

What is also important to know is that the symptoms of an ear infection come and go.

Symptoms can also occur in one or both ears. Chronic ear infection symptoms can be less noticeable than those of acute ear infections.

Hence, fever and ear ache should spur you to see a doctor. You should be extremely careful with babies younger than six months who have fever or ear infection symptoms.

Your doctor will diagnose an ear infection by checking if there is a draining of fluid from the middle ear, perforation in the eardrum or a collapsed eardrum.

Sometimes, ear infections can lead to the following serious complications:

  1. Hearing loss
  2. Speech or language delay in children
  3. An infection in a skull bone called mastoiditis
  4. Meningitis
  5. Ruptured ear drum

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3715 people found this helpful

6 Most Common Ear Ailments In Children!

DNB (ENT), Diploma in Otorhinolaryngology (DLO), MBBS
ENT Specialist, Ahmedabad
6 Most Common Ear Ailments In Children!

The ear is made up of three parts that is outer, middle and the inner part. Infections, disorders and ailments in the ear can occur across all age groups and in any part of the ear. Ear ailments are more common in children than in adults as the Eustachian tubes (tubes which drain out ear fluid) are smaller in children.

Here are a few common ailments which occur in children:

  1. Acute otitis media: AOM is the most common ear infection in children. Some parts of the middle ear are infected, resulting in swelling and blockage of fluid behind the eardrum. This condition is characterised by earache in children and in graver conditions, can also cause fever.
  2. Otitis media with effusion: This condition usually occurs due to the infestation of an infection when the fluid gets restricted behind the ear drum. This condition doesn’t exhibit too many symptoms except mild earache. You should visit an ENT specialist who can diagnose this condition by checking the concentration of fluid behind the eardrum using special instruments.
  3. Chronic otitis media with effusion: This condition occurs in children when the fluid remains trapped behind the eardrum for a long period of time. It can lead to serious infection and cause problems in hearing in children.
  4. Barotrauma: Barotrauma occurs due to changes in atmospheric pressure changes. It can cause problems in the Eustachian tube and causes trapping of air in the middle ear. Middle ear problems can become severe if left untreated and result in a burst in the eardrum, causing excessive bleeding.
  5. Meniere's disease: This is a disorder, which comes in bouts and is characterised by vertigo and fluctuating hearing loss. This condition usually affects one ear. It can result in tinnitus (ringing in the ear) or permanent loss of hearing if left untreated.
  6. Swimmer’s ear: Swimmer’s ear, also known as otitis externa, is a common condition which is caused in the outer area of the ear. This condition is caused due to remnants of chlorine water in the ear or because of inserting swabs too deep inside the canal. This condition is characterised by earache, discomfort and itching of the ear.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

4112 people found this helpful

Vision, Hearing and Speech Overview

Dr. Ramakanth Reddy 90% (95 ratings)
MBBS, Diploma In Child Health
Pediatrician, Hyderabad
Vision, Hearing and Speech Overview

Vision, hearing, and speech are an important part of your child's life. When an infant is born, his or her eyesight is immature. The infant later develops the ability to focus. Hearing appears early in fetal development and is necessary for proper progression of speech and language. Monitoring your child's ability to see, hear, and speak is an important part of the health of your growing child.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Optometric Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have recommended the following vision screening stages:

  • Newborn. All newborns are examined in the nursery for eye infections and other eye disorders, such as glaucoma.

  • 6 months. Visual screening of infants should be performed during the well-baby visits, particularly checking for how the eyes work together.

  • 3 to 4 years. Formal visual acuity tests and the complete eye exam should be performed.

  • 5 years and older. Annual visual screening tests and eye exams should be performed.

Children develop speech, language, and hearing skills at different ages. However, hearing loss can lead to delays in your child's ability to make sounds, learn to speak, and communicate. The AAP recommends hearing screening for all newborns before they leave the hospital. Talk with your child's healthcare provider if you're concerned about your child's hearing or speech, or if you notice any of the following:

  • No response to sound at any age

  • Infant doesn't move or jump when a loud sound is made

  • No babbling by the time the infant is 9 months old

  • No words spoken by age 18 to 24 months

  • Doesn't follow simple commands by age 2

  • Poor voice quality at any age

1 person found this helpful

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