Altoona, WI

Except for well baby check-ups, the most common reason for a child to visit the medical doctor in the U.S. is for ear infections.  In fact, over 30 million visits to the medical doctor EVERY YEAR is for an ear infection.  The estimated cost of treating ear infections in the United States EVERY YEAR is $2 Billion! Half of all antibiotic prescriptions for children written every year is for ear infections.  Needless to say, this is a huge issue in our children.

The short explanation to what causes an ear infection is fluid in the ear (that cannot drain down the Eustachian tube because it is blocked) that allows bacteria or viruses to grow and infect the inner ear putting pressure and pain on the eardrum and local structures.

Studies show that most ear infections start because of an upper respiratory infection.  Studies also show that about 75% of ear infections are VIRAL. The most common treatment for ear infections is antibiotics.  Antibiotics don’t work on viral infections. In fact, not only do antibiotics not work on viral infections, but using antibiotics to treat anything can lead the person to be susceptible to recurring infections more than if they didn’t use the antibiotic treatment.  Pediatricians are suppose to hold off on prescribing antibiotics initially as an inner ear infection usually resolves in a week or so on it’s own.  However, because of parent pressure for the doctor to do something, the doctor ends up prescribing often to please the parent.

So what is chiropractic’s solution?  Get to the bottom of the issue!  So instead of treating the effect (bacteria/virus developing in the inner ear) like medicine does, chiropractors get to the cause.  One of the main causes of improper drainage of the inner ear is a malfunctioning Eustachian tube.  Chiropractic’s approach is to make sure the child’s spine is in good alignment so that the nerves are working the best that they can.  In addition to adjusting the child’s spine, many time we will do an oral massage.  Let me explain this….There is a muscle in the back of the mouth that is attached to the Eustachian tube opening.  When we put pressure on that muscle to help relax it, there is a reflex to the muscle that surrounds the Eustachian tube opening and relaxes that opening allowing the inner ear to drain.  Thus, getting rid of the CAUSE of the ear infection (which is improper drainage of the tube).

There have been many case reports of chiropractic helping with ear infection.  You can read those reports here.  In our office, we have helped children (and adults) heal naturally from ear infections.  We have helped reduce the occurrence of reinfection.  So the next time your child has a suspected ear infection, think chiropractic FIRST!  Your child’s health will be better in the long-run for it!

Naturally Restoring Your Health,

Dr. Gunderson