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Earache

Earache is often caused by an ear infection. It's not usually serious and should get better in a few days.

If you have earache, you may also have other symptoms, like a high temperature or hearing loss. Earache can be harder to spot in young children.

Taking painkillers and placing a warm or cold flannel on your ear can help ease earache. You can also get treatments like eardrops from a pharmacy.

Common causes of earache include ear infections, a build-up of earwax in your ear and fluid in your ear (glue ear).

Read more on the NHS website.

If you have earache, you may also have other symptoms, like a high temperature or hearing loss. Earache can be harder to spot in young children.

Spotting earache in babies and young children

A young child might have earache if they:

Earache and ear pain can affect 1 or both ears.

Read more on the NHS website.

Taking painkillers and placing a warm or cold flannel on your ear can help ease earache. You can also get treatments like eardrops from a pharmacy.

Self-care

There are some things you can do to help relieve earache and ear pain.


Do

  • use painkillers, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen (children under 16 should not take aspirin)
  • place a warm or cold flannel on the ear

Don't

  • do not put anything inside your ear, such as cotton buds
  • do not try to remove earwax
  • do not let water get inside your ear

Medical treatments

A pharmacist might be able to tell you:

  • what you can do to treat earache yourself
  • if you can buy anything to help (for example, eardrops)
  • if you need to see a GP

Read more on the NHS website.

Common causes of earache include ear infections, a build-up of earwax in your ear and fluid in your ear (glue ear).

Read more on the NHS website.