What are Ear Infection Symptoms in Kids?

Doctor checking ear infection symptoms in kids

Ear Infection Symptoms In Kids

Ear infections in babies and young children are widespread due to their small eustachian tubes, which connect the middle ear to the inner ear. Additionally, their developing immune systems may not be strong enough to fight infections. 

Ear infection symptoms in kids typically consist of the following: 

  • Ear pain
  • Fluid draining from the ear
  • Swelling of the outer ear or behind the ear
  • Heat behind or near the ear
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Discomfort when lying down
  • Itching of the ear canal
  • Fever

Ear Infections In Babies

Due to babies not being able to communicate verbally, it may be difficult to determine whether your baby has symptoms of an ear infection. Your baby may have an ear infection if they:

  • Have increased irritability
  • Are tugging or pulling at their ear
  • Are having trouble sleeping or lying down
  • Have a low-grade fever

If you suspect your baby is dealing with an ear infection, you should bring them into a children’s urgent care or to their pediatrician’s office to get a medical professional’s opinion. The infection could worsen if treatment is not received. 

Other Complications Of Ear Infections In Kids

Children may experience other complications when they have an ear infection. Additionally, the symptoms of an ear infection may depend on where the infection is in the middle or inner ear. In addition to ear pain, other complications of an ear infection in children include:

  • Trouble hearing
  • Fluid buildup in the middle ear
  • General discomfort in the ear, nose, or throat
  • Swelling of the ear canal
  • Trouble balancing 

How Is An Ear Infection Diagnosed? 

Although there is no official test to diagnose an ear infection, they are easily diagnosed by medical providers by noting symptoms and looking in the ear. 

Medical providers will often look for fluid in the middle of the ear, redness inside the ear, and note where the general discomfort is to diagnose a middle or inner ear infection accurately. 

When To Visit Urgent Care vs. Emergency Room (ER)

Ear infections are generally not a serious condition, so most can be treated at pediatric urgent care clinics

However, if your child is experiencing severe ear pain, high fever, bloody discharge from the ear, or if the ear is draining a pus-like substance, visit the emergency room immediately. 

Turn To KidsStreet Urgent Care

Ear infections can be highly uncomfortable for children, and KidsStreet Urgent Care is here to help! We frequently diagnose and treat middle and inner ear infections and want to get your child healing and feeling better. 

Our online registration allows you to wait from your home or vehicle until we are ready for you. Once we’re ready to see you, you will receive a text message informing you to check in at the front desk.

We always welcome walk-ins; however, be aware that registering online reduces in-clinic wait times. Walk-ins are added to the same queue as those who register online.