The ear, nose and throat (ENT) are part of the upper respiratory tract. They help us breathe, smell, hear, keep our balance, swallow and speak. Infections and conditions of the sinus, tonsils and adenoids affect these organs. Ear infections occur when a cold, throat infection, or allergy attack causes fluid to become trapped in the middle ear. Mostly affecting children, symptoms may include earaches and thick, yellow fluid coming from the ears.

The connections between your nose and throat, sinuses and ears, mean that fluids can move from one area to another. This is how a cold becomes a sinus, throat or ear infection.

Symptoms - Ear infection

In adults, the symptoms are:

  • Earache (either a sharp, sudden pain or a dull, continuous pain)
  • A sharp stabbing pain with immediate warm drainage from the ear canal
  • A feeling of fullness in the ear
  • Nausea
  • Muffled hearing
  • Ear drainage

In children, the symptoms are:

  • Tugging at the ear
  • Poor sleep
  • Fever
  • Irritability, restlessness
  • Ear drainage
  • Diminished appetite
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