The American Lung Association reports that the average adult gets up to four colds a year. That’s a lot even if the majority of colds are minor viral infections. Whether the virus attacks the sinuses, throat or respiratory system, it can lead to ear congestion, and ultimately, an infection in the ear.
There are certain cold symptoms you don’t want to ignore even though colds are generally considered harmless. Scientists have finally affirmed the suspected connection between ear infections and the common cold. This discovery is significant, because ear infections are a significant contributing factor in the disturbing rise in antibiotic resistance.
You Should Never Ignore These Symptoms
It’s very common to feel stuffed up in your ears when you’re suffering from a cold due to the fact that your sinuses and ears are connected. If you’re using a decongestant, and your head is draining fluids, this feeling normally comes and goes. But in just a few hours congestion can turn into an ear infection. This is the reason why you should always get professional help if you experience any pain or unusual discharge in your ear.
Pain can be evidence of inflammation and infection and is a signal your cold is moving in the wrong direction. If you take care of it early enough, you can get a prescription for antibiotics and prevent permanent injury. It can result in eardrum scaring and might damage the cilia if dismissed.
Is this very significant? 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.
Your Overall Health Can be Impacted by Loss of Hearing
Hearing loss has been associated with other health problems, from loss of cognitive ability to depression to an increase in accidents. An increase in healthcare costs has been associated with hearing loss by researchers recently. As a matter of fact, in just a decade, neglected hearing loss can increase your healthcare costs by 46%.
Your likelihood of needing hospitalization with untreated hearing loss increases by 50%….and the chance of needing to be readmitted also increases.
It adds up every time your ears take even minor injury. Johns Hopkins discovered that just having slight hearing loss can double your chances of getting dementia. Consider the fact that significant hearing loss can be caused by scarring on the eardrum from repeated ear infections.
Having Ear Pain for Days?
Have you already neglected ear pain for days? Seek treatment immediately. Don’t make the common mistake of waiting too long. There’s a reason most health insurance companies consider ear pain or signs of an ear infection an emergency. If you feel pain in your ear during a cold or after a cold schedule a hearing test. A professional evaluation can determine if:
- you currently have an ear infection
- you need to address damage to the eardrum
- there is any impact on your inner ear
A professional examination can also ensure that there are no blockages in the ear that could cause irritation or temporary hearing loss.
Ear pain or prolonged loss of hearing are certain signs that you need to see a professional. Schedule a hearing test now.