Non-drug way to ease earaches

March 20, 2008 3:57:35 PM PDT
Colds, allergies, and sinus problems can leave a child with an earache - often in the middle of the night! With over-the-counter cold & cough medications now off the market, what's a parent to do?

Dr. David Mason, of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, himself a parent, agrees! "It's never an opportune time when you get an earache."

Earaches occur when the eustachian tubes become blocked, and fluid builds up.

But Dr. Mason has a simple method to relieve the pain with massage, not medication.

He showed Action News how to do it, with help from 8-year-old Jordan, a young allergy sufferer who has had her share of earaches.

As he places the fingers of a right hand in a "V", in front and in back of her ear, he tells her, "I'm going to place my hand on either side of your ear, and gently massage the area...... How does that feel?"

Dr. Masons says the motion helps to drain the painful fluid build-up.

After massaging the ear itself, Dr. Mason uses a similar motion under the chin, and on the neck.

Dr. Mason says this method works on children of all ages, and even adults.

He say parents can do this two to three times a day. Parents can also use warm compresses to help drainage, and Tylenol or Motrin for pain, being careful to stick to the proper dose.

Jordan said afterward, "It felt really good!"