Otitis media, a severe ear infection, is one of the leading causes of conductive hearing loss. Colds, sinusitis or allergies cause fluid to build up in the middle ear causing ear pain and muffled hearing. Repeated bouts of otitis media may lead to permanent hearing loss.
This inflammation often begins when infections that cause sore throats, colds, or other respiratory or breathing problems spread to the middle ear.
Otitis media not only causes severe pain but may result in serious complications if it is not treated. An untreated infection can travel from the middle ear to the nearby parts of the head, including the brain. Although the hearing loss caused by otitis media is usually temporary. However, untreated otitis media may lead to permanent hearing impairment. Persistent fluid in the middle ear and chronic otitis media can reduce a child’s hearing at a time that is critical for speech and language development.
For more information on Otitis media, please visit the College of Family Physicians of Canada