Ear infections are very painful and are a concern especially to parents with children having ear problems. The infections make the patient uncomfortable and most of them are hard to treat. To try to treat ear infections naturally, many people have opted to use organic ear oils. Organic ear oil are derived from plants by extracting them in very concentrated form. They are extracted by steaming the plant part that produces the extract until the components separate. The chemical composition of a particular oil depends on the plant from which it is harvested.
The organic oils have both antibacterial or antimicrobial properties hence have viral and bacterial efficacy. They fight the virus by preventing it from reproducing and taking over cells in the body. Antibacterial property works by killing harmful species of bacteria and different oil kill the bacteria in different ways e.g. by interfering with the cellular processes that supply the bacteria with energy. As a result, the bacteria becomes weak and dies leaving the body. Examples of the most used plant organic oils for ear treatment are tea tree oil and basil oil. They also treat pain, swelling, and ear discharge.
Tea tree oil is said to have a chemical compound that kills the bacteria when it comes into contact with the oil. The compound is called terpinene-4-ol and makes the tea tree oil an effective antibacterial compared to others. researchers have also discovered that basil oil heals ear infections at a rate of 56-81%. Such results are promising, and people may finally turn to organic oils for ear infection treatments. To use the oil extract, it is advised that it is first diluted using a carrier oil. Dilution reduces the possible effects of the oils on the skin such as irritation and causing a burning sensation. Examples of carrier oils include jojoba, extra virgin olive oil, and coconut oil.
First, before using an organic oil in the ear canal, test the reaction of your skin to the oil by applying it in a small patch, dilute, and spread. In case of no inflammation or irritation after 24 hours, it is safe to use for the treatment of your ear infection. Organic oil can be applied to an infection in different ways. One method involves the use of a cotton ball. The cotton ball is soaked in the diluted organic oil and placed lightly in the ear. The oil sips down the ear canal slowly reaching the infection. A second method involves the use of a dropper to place a drop of the diluted oil directly into the ear canal. The ear is tilted and after a few minutes, the oil flows into the canal. Lastly, in case the infection has caused inflammation on the outer parts of the ear, rubbing the oil around the ear may help relieve the pain.
Organic oils when used undiluted can be very risky since they cause skin irritation when highly concentrated. They can also be used to treat ruptured eardrums and in case the pain perseveres consult your doctor. Using the oil drops frequently and in large amounts can also cause clogging and it is best to do one treatment at a time and assess if it is effective before proceeding. Expectant mothers, children, and breastfeeding women should take a lot of caution when using organic oil treatment. Finally, before settling to use organic oils for ear treatment, a doctor’s consultation is necessary. The doctor guides on how to conduct the treatment process and what to do in case of reaction to the oil or clogging of the ear.
Other than basil and tea tree oil the following organic oils are also effective in ear infection treatment:
- Lamigex ear drops contain a mixture of clove oil, lavender oil, and herb-Robert oil.
- Oregano oil is antiviral due to the component in it called carvacrol.
- Garlic oil
- Mustard oil
- Peppermint oil
- Thyme oil
Organic oils also essential oils are natural, and plant-based but are not entirely safe to use. For effective and safe use of their extracts, it is key to get a professional’s advice. Most of the essential oils have proven effective in treating ear infections naturally and are therefore recommended. However, it is important to note that prolonged use of these products can be harmful to the ear and, they are concentrated and need to be diluted before use.