How We Treat an Ear Infection Naturally

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How we treat an ear infection naturally. Natural methods that work.

Ear infection-2

You know the signs.

Tugging at the ears.

The wailing and gnashing of teeth when you lay them down to change their diaper.

5 minute nap that was supposed to last at least two hours.

The crying as they try to suck on their bottle, nurse, or suck on their paci.

The fever (which may or may not be present).

All those wonderful classic signs of an ear infection. Although some children show absolutely no signs. My oldest son just gets stinky ears. No fever. No tugging at his ears. Nothing. But that smell? Awful.

I am not one to rush to the doctor. I’m more afraid of us catching something else while we’re at the office. Antibiotics disrupt the natural balance of flora (good and bad bacteria) in their bodies. Although they are on probiotics, I just don’t what to mess with that if I don’t have to. Have my children been on antibiotics? Yes. But very few times. We usually follow the wait and see approach.

My youngest son started tugging on his ears a couple of days ago. He’s also teething, so I thought maybe that was the problem. But he woke up around 10 last night, screaming. I went to pick him up and immediately knew he had a fever. After he calmed down he was still pulling on his ears.

As a Mommy, you just want to fix the problem. Immediately.

So what did I do?

What We Did to Treat an Ear Infection

Essential oils. 

He was still pretty fussy so I pulled out my oils. Although six months ago, I thought essential oils were for crazy people, I have seen them work and am amazed every time. FIRST, grab your carrier oil. Dilute. Dilute. Dilute.

I always use coconut oil. Put a little bit in your palm and let it warm up. Then I put two drops of Melrose (you can also use Lavender or Lemon especially for children) in the palm of one hand and use my other hand to apply it to the outside of his ear.

I then put a drop of lemon essential oil in my palm and used my other hand to apply the lemon behind his ear and down his neck. I did everything to the other ear also. Then I applied Thieves to the soles of his feet to help fight the infection. ALWAYS, always, always use a carrier oil when applying essential oils to dilute them. Especially to little ones.

He stopped whimpering and fell asleep. Have I told you how much I love these oils? He woke up again sometime during the night and I applied everything again. This morning he was awake and as happy as a lark. His fever was gone. But he was still pulling on his ears.

Garlic Oil

Willow/Garlic Oil.

This time I used the Willow/Garlic Oil. You can make your own garlic oil. It’s pretty easy, actually.

Garlic Oil.

Crush a couple of cloves of garlic and place them in a pan on the stove. Add about 1/2 cup of olive oil and heat until hot. Strain and let cool before putting it in the ear. I usually test it on my wrist before using it.

I warmed up the bottle in a cup of warm water and put 2-3 drops in his ears. I did this two more times during the day.

Before bed tonight we applied the oils again. WITH the coconut oil as a carrier.

Colloidal Silver

Other options.

We have also used colloidal silver and breastmilk to treat ear infections in the past. You can take Colloidal Silver either internally or put a few drops in the ears. If it seems like a really painful ear infection, I’ll alternate the garlic oil and colloidal silver. But usually, I catch it early enough I can use one or the other. And yes, breastmilk. I actually forgot about it this time, but I have used breastmilk with my other children to heal ear infections, stuffy noses (instead of saline solution), you can use it for pink eye and even scratches. It truly is liquid gold!

If for some reason he starts pulling at his ears and seems to be in pain again, we will make an appointment to see the chiropractor. Usually, a slight adjustment is all that’s needed to help the ear drain and heal from the infection.

Listen to your Mommy Instinct. 

We tend to try natural methods first and talk about those with our doctor. If we see no improvement, we let her know and we proceed with antibiotics {with a probiotic (affiliate link)}.

What are your natural remedies to heal ear infections?

**disclaimer** I am not a doctor. Please consult your doctor before starting any natural methods for healing. What works for some does not work for all.

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  1. This is spot on! I have 5 kiddos and never need antibiotics for an ear infections – garlic oil or colloidal silver work wonders!

    1. If antibiotics and garlic oil aren’t working- will the colloidal silver?
      I am new to alternative medicine and I need help for my 2 yr old.

      1. I replied via email, Michelle. But to answer your question, yes it should. I’d also do the ear technique to help the ear drain. Praying for quick healing!

      2. My midwife had a child with reoccurring ear infections and she used belladona and kali bichromaicum (one for left ear and one for right, but cannot remember which) It stops the pain immediately! And they help them heal faster. I am sold for life!

    2. How long does it typically work for the garlic combo to work? Trying to give it time, but I don’t want to wait to the point of it getting worse. We have been told my son has tiny tubes so he will be prone to infection. Thank you!!!

  2. We never had ear infections growing up, so when my husband came home with a sever ear-ache, (out in the cold wind all day with no hat) I wasn’t sure what do to. But seeing my man almost in tears with the pain made me do something. That something was homemade garlic oil!
    I love this post, and the ideas of using other eo’s to help with the infection and fever 🙂

    1. It so hard to see our loved ones in any kind of pain. We love garlic oil! I even take fresh garlic “pills” when I feel a cold coming on. It’s good stuff!

  3. Hi! Did you use straight oil or did u dilute them down? I have peppermint from YL for headaches and it get kinda “hot”

    1. Hi, Lexie! ALWAYS dilute essential oils. The only oil I don’t usually dilute is Lavender. Everything else needs to be diluted, especially on children. Peppermint is a hot oil. I use coconut oil to dilute my oils. Mainly because we use it for everything and I buy the gallon tubs from Tropical Traditions. I love it!

  4. Mullein is also very effective at treating ear infection. Warm mullein oil dropped into the ear can often cure outer and even middle ear infections.

    1. How exactly do you use breast milk as a curative, I see it listed here, but just curious do you rub around the ear? Put in the ear?

      1. I have dropped it in the ear. I’ve done the same with stuffy noses in babies. It’s so much more effective than saline spray! Haha!

  5. I have a very deviated spetum and it causes bad ear infections if I get out in the wind with no ear muffs… When I first started learning about natural alternatives to pharmaceuticals a friend of mine reccomended grapefruit seed extract oil, and it was amazing! It worked so well. The last time I tried to find a bottle though, my small town natural health and wellness center was out of it, but they recommended to me a garlic/mullien oil compound and it smells like spaghetti sauce but it really works, especially in conjunction with the colloidal silver.

  6. Warm sweet pea oil does wonders too! I had horrible ear infections as a child and I remember my father putting drops of sweet pea oil in my ears and blowing candle smoke too. Something about it worked better than any medicine the doctor provided. I was even scheduled to have tubes put in my ears because the doctors couldn’t get my ear infections to go away. My dad had it taken care of in days! Surgery avoided!

    1. Me too! It was horrible. The antibiotics weren’t so great either. I’m so glad I’ve found an alternative!!

  7. My son has an ear infection right now. First was $70 antibiotics when he had his first double ear infection before Christmas. Then after Christmas we had to go back because he had a fever all weekend and a right ear infection (he’s 10 months). $200 antibiotic! And now we find out that he’s allergic slightly to penicillin (in the antibiotic, amox. specifically) and has spots all over his trunk and bad diapers. I’m very tired of the doctors and the strong meds. I will need to bookmark this for the future. It’s just so hard as a mom not to rush to the doctor – especially with my husband and I’s chronic history of ear infections as children, and with my husband having hearing damage due to it. We are a bit hyper-vigilant. EOs are on my list this year to start incorporating slowly. Thank you for this post, it’s very helpful!

    1. Wow. I am so sorry your holidays were filled with doctor visits and getting prescriptions filled, Nicole. That stinks!! Being a mommy is so hard. I often tell my friends that I wish my kids had a button that would tell me exactly what was wrong. It would make life so much easier. I’m glad you found the post helpful! Between the colloidal silver and Young Living’s essential oils, that usually clears it right up. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks for stopping by!

    2. So sorry your LO is sick! I have done the colloidal silver and doing it currently with my 2yr old right now. I don’t even go to the Dr anymore. Ear infections and sickness in general are easily healed with silver and essential oils. I also will do garlic oil w/willow bark in the ears since its a natural pain reliever and then use the silver as well. My older son had tubes put in because he had severe double ear infections, I wish so badly I knew what I know now so I didn’t have to put him on rounds of antibiotics every 6 weeks for the first 3 years of his life. Good luck mama!

  8. I am cringing a little at this post. It’s not really healing the ear infection, just treating the symptom and discomfort. (I use olive oil and a cotton ball to help soothe nighttime ear infection pain). The ear infection is healing on its own, which many times they will do without antibiotics.

    1. I’m sorry I made you cringe. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts!!

  9. I love that you are taking a different approach to things & sharing your thoughts! I feel blessed that my 18 month old has never had an ear infection, but I did get prepared last winter & picked up some Wally’s Ear Oil to go along with my YL oils, etc. One thing that made me a bit nervous was recommending the use of Peppermint oil, especially around a child’s head. The link you posted says to not use on babies or young children & when I was researching last year, I emailed YL and they told me it was because the babies lungs are not developed enough to be inhaling such a potent oil and it could be harmful to their little lungs. I hope this doesn’t come across rude, I am truthfully just wondering what you have found out because I am no pro at using oils 🙂

    1. Instead of peppermint oil, you can also use lemon oil (but you have to be careful since it is photosensitive), lavender, and we’ve used Melrose. I majorly dilute the peppermint, because it is a hot oil, and the smell isn’t that strong. But as with everything, you have to go with your mommy gut. Not rude at all! I hope that I never stop learning and reevaluating what I have learned :). Thanks for stopping by and commenting!!

  10. Goodness. I would never have thought of this. Thanks for sharing with the Monday Pin It Party. I have pinned and shared.

  11. both of my kids had a lot of ear infections. Great tips. Thanks. Thanks for linking up at Tell Me About It Tuesday. We hope you hop over and share with us again next week.

  12. I always try to go the nature route when it comes to caring for not only myself, but my son. Its great to know there are natural ways of dealing with ear infections when they do come up.

    Thanks for linking up at Gingham & Roses!
    Hope to see you back next week!

    Tenns @ New Mama Diaries

  13. Thanks for linking up at Sweet and Savoury Sunday, I’m the new co-host and would love for you to link up this weekend. Thanks for sharing your post with us!

  14. My 1st had ear infections and she was on antibiotics all the time—and I didn’t know about probiotics then. By my fourth I had learned about the willow oil that you pictured. My 2nd and 3rd never got ear infections, but my 4th was prone to them too. So I started to give him willow oil whenever he had a head cold. I would nurse him and put drops in his ears at the same time. That prevented/cured them. I don’t know which–but I was glad he didn’t have ear infections. I thought it worked better than the collodial silver–but I’m not sure about that. The willow/garlic oil helped my daughter with the pain from swimmers ear too. Thanks for linking up with the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party. I have pinned your post to the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Board!

  15. Thank you for this amazing post! And I was so glad you mentioned chiropractic adjustments for ear infections. These are often overlooked but are so essential for promoting proper ear drainage! Excellent post…thank you!

  16. Can you use these oils while a 1yr old is currently on antibiotics? My son got an ear infection around 10months old and he has been on 5 rounds of antibiotics and the infections still aren’t gone (2 lonnnnnnnnnggggg months). I want to start these oils immediately but I didn’t know if I could do them in conjunction with his current antibiotic??? He’s on day 3 of it so I don’t want to just quit it. Please help I’m literally at my breaking point with the docs!

    1. YES! I have. I am so sorry you and your baby are going through this. It is so so hard. Hugs, mama! I’ll message you. Can I use the email address you provided?

      1. Hi! I know this post is from 2 years ago but I just found it! My sweet girl is 14 months old and we have had repeat ear infections and fluid for 5 months now. Antibiotics no long does anything. The previous post from a reader encouraged me to write you too. We just started trying oils and chiropractic care about 3-4weeks ago. We were doing great health wise. It went on vacation for a week, then my baby girl and my 4yr old got chest colds and of course my daughters turned to her ears again. Both still have fluid and 1 is “bright red” the doc says. Both doc and ENT have recommended tubes but I just cannot do surgery on my 1yr old. I’m trying everything to avoid that. Just thought I’d reach out. Any advice or support I’d love. Thanks so much!

      2. Oh, Amy. I’m so sorry you guys are going through this. I would be nervous too. Have you eliminated dairy and possibly gluten? Both can cause inflammation in the body, lowering the immune system and making it more prone to sinus and ear infections. I struggled with both growing up, and dairy and gluten were the big culprits. You’re already doing chiropractic care and essential oils. I’d eliminate dairy, gluten, and add in a good probiotic. Hugs. I know this is hard. I promise you will get through it.

  17. Hi there! My 5 month old has stinky ears. Do you think this is always symptomatic of an ear infection? I told his pediatrician but he didn’t seem that concerned & only suggested I keep them drier. I will try your essential oil tricks though, I am nervous about applying to baby. I will dilute.dilute.dilute ;). Also, when did you start giving your children probiotics and in what form?

  18. I use tea tree oil: mix 5 drops with 30 drops of warm olive oil, put 3drops of the mixture in the ear several times a day (or night…)

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