Home Remedies for Earache and Sore Throat Due to Drainage

Earaches and sore throats often occur before, during and after a bout with the common cold. The Eustachian tube runs from the back of the throat to the ear, and often becomes infected or irritated due to excess fluids. Earaches due to an infection are more common in children than adults. The throat can become sore due to excess mucus secretions in the throat as well as viral infections. A variety of home remedies may relieve symptoms. Still, if symptoms are not relieved, the sufferer should seek medical attention.

Young man getting his ear checked by a doctor. (Image: KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock/Getty Images)

Heat

A warm, moist washcloth placed over the ear for about 20 minutes relieves pain in the ear, according to MayoClinic.com. A heating pad placed onto the ear also adds warmth. According to MotherNature.com, an old home remedy for creating heat includes warming a plate in the oven or microwave and wrapping it with a towel. The ear is then placed next to the warm plate for pain relief. Warm liquids are encouraged when suffering from a sore throat. Hot broths, ciders and teas may also soothe a sore throat and increase comfort.

Over-the-Counter Medications

Over-the-counter pain medications such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen or aspirin may relieve both a sore throat and earache. Children and teenagers should not take aspirin due to a risk of developing the life-threatening condition known as Reye's syndrome. Ibuprofen should always be taken with food or a glass of milk to minimize the risk of developing gastric ulcers or internal bleeding.

Saltwater Gargle

Saltwater rinses and gargles -- about 1 tsp. of salt mixed with a glass of warm water -- may decrease irritation caused by a sore throat. The liquid is rinsed in the back of the throat and then spit out. The solution should not be swallowed. The treatment is only recommended for children who understand to not swallow the solution. The saltwater gargle can be repeated as often as needed to relieve discomfort.

Oils

A few drops of mineral or baby oil may relieve an earache as well as soften earwax. Cerumen, or earwax, impaction may be the cause of the earache, reports the American Academy of Otolaryngology. Oils should never be placed into the ear if a perforated eardrum is suspected. Signs of a perforated eardrum include fluids or blood draining from the ear, dizziness and severe pain.

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