A report by The American Lung Association states that the typical adult gets up to four colds a year. Although colds are usually minor viral infections, that’s still a lot. It doesn’t make a difference what part of the body the virus attacks, if it results in congestion, it can cause an ear infection.
Despite the fact that most people think colds are harmless, there are certain symptoms you don’t want to ignore. Scientists have finally affirmed the suspected link between ear infections and the common cold. This finding is significant, because ear infections are a major contributing factor in the troubling rise in antibiotic resistance.
You Should Never Ignore These Symptoms
It’s quite common to feel congested in your ears when you’re suffering from a cold due to the fact that your sinuses and ears are connected. If you’re taking a decongestant, and your head is draining fluids, this feeling normally comes and goes. But congestion can turn into an ear infection in only a few hours. This is the reason that if you’re experiencing pain or discharge in your ears you need to get professional help.
Pain is a hint that your cold is getting worse and can be an indication of inflammation or infection. If caught early, you can get a prescription for antibiotics and avoid permanent injury. If it’s ignored, it can result in scarring on the eardrum and possibly injury to the cilia from inflammation.
How serious is this? Generally, cold induced hearing loss is only temporary. However, permanent hearing loss can result if the eardrum or cilia become damaged and that can lead to other health issues.
Loss of Hearing Can Impact Your General Health
Loss of cognitive capacity, depression, an increase in accidents, and other health issues have been connected to loss of hearing. Researchers have recently confirmed a connection between hearing loss and increased healthcare costs. As a matter of fact, in just a decade, neglected hearing loss can raise your healthcare expenses by 46%.
Your probability of requiring hospitalization with untreated hearing loss increases by 50%….and the probability of needing to be readmitted also increases.
Even minor damage can add up. Even slight hearing loss can, Johns Hopkins found, double your probability of getting dementia. Consider the fact that every time you get an ear infection it can cause scarring that leads to significant hearing loss over time.
Suffering From Pain for Days?
Have you had ear pain for days and ignored it? Get treatment right away. Don’t make the normal mistake of waiting too long. Most health insurance companies consider signs of an ear infection or ear pain an emergency and there’s a good reason for that. It’s necessary to get your ear evaluated if you had any pain over the course of your cold or are still experiencing difficulty hearing after your cold is gone. A professional examination can tell you if:
- your inner ear is affected
- You have an ear infection now
- you need to address injury to the eardrum
A professional evaluation can also ensure that there are no blockages in the ear that might cause irritation or temporary hearing loss.
It’s a sure sign that you need to see a professional if you have prolonged loss of hearing or ear pain. Schedule a hearing test right away.