If you develop a sudden or severe earache, visit an urgent care center. There, the physician will perform a visual examination of your ear and look inside the canal with an otoscope. This examination can reveal signs of eardrum inflammation, redness, drainage, and fluid. Once the doctor has uncovered the cause of your earache, they may recommend the following interventions to ease your symptoms.
Earaches are often the result of bacterial infections. If the urgent care physician determines that your pain is caused by a bacterial infection instead of a virus, broad-spectrum antibiotics will be prescribed.
Once the bacterial infection has cleared, your discomfort will also subside. The urgent care facility may have a pharmacy on the premises; however, if it does not, the physician will write you a prescription for your antibiotics so that you can have it filled at your local pharmacy.
The physician will remind you to finish the entire antibiotic prescription and not stop as soon as your earache goes away. In addition to antibiotic use, the facility physician will recommend an over-the-counter drug such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen to relieve your earache and treat body aches and fever that often accompany bacterial infections.
Ear Wax Removal
In addition to bacterial infections, severe earaches can be caused by embedded ear wax. If your ear examination reveals signs of embedded ear wax or ear wax that is blocking your ear canal, the doctor may irrigate your ear with warm water to help soften the hardened wax so that it is easier to extract.
Once the wax has been successfully removed, your pain should subside. In addition to pain relief, ear wax removal may also result in better hearing. Wax accumulation can result in diminished hearing, and in severe cases, profound hearing loss.
After ear wax removal, the physician may recommend that you use ear drops that are specially formulated to prevent the excessive buildup of ear wax. Before you leave the urgent care facility, the physician will recommend that you follow-up with your physician for periodic ear examinations and hearing assessments.
If you develop a severe earache, visit an urgent care facility. When the cause of ear pain is recognized and treated promptly, you will be less likely to experience increased pain, worsening of a bacterial ear infection, hearing loss, a ruptured eardrum, and the development of scar tissue inside your ear canal.
Contact a local urgent care facility for more information.