Inner Ear Infection Overview
The anatomy of the ear is made up of three parts:
- The outer ear-the external part of the ear that receives external sound and transports it to the eardrum
- The middle ear- functions by receiving auditory sounds and compressing it to be deciphered in liquid form
- The inner ear which is composed of various tubes and canals make up the labyrinth.
- These are the main parts (a)the cochlea- its main purpose is to receive and decipher sounds to the brain (b) the vestibular system – it determines the movement of the head and correct balance.
If infection and inflammation occur in the inner ear it highly affects the hearing and balance of the person. Since all information transported to the brain has been disrupted a person might feel nauseous or dizzy and may lose his sense of balance due to Labyrinthitis (the inflammation of the inner ear).
An untreated person with inner ear infection can also develop tinnitus- loud ringing, hissing, or buzzing sounds perceived by the ear without external sound sources. Vertigo or the perception of “spinning” movement while the person is immobile, can also a result from this infection. There are certain medicines that help alleviate people experiencing vertigo or nausea. There are times when medicines for vertigo provide temporary relief where they only last for a few hours. It is always best to consult your doctor if these become unbearable.
How do we get labyrinthitis?
Labyrinthitis can be caused but not limited to different factors such as
- bacteria or viruses,
- head trauma or injuries,
- allergies caused by medication,
- excessive fatigue and stress,
- excessive smoking and liquor consumption
Bacteria caused labyrinthitis might also produce complications resulting to:
- meningitis (the membranes protecting the brain get inflamed and may prove fatal for the patient), or
- tuberculosis (the weakening of the lungs causing pulmonary problems).
- Hearing loss may be imminent in the infected ear and the possibility of paralysis on the face might occur. It is necessary for the patient to get this consulted with a doctor and properly treated.
Virus borne upper respiratory complications from the flu or the common cold may also result to inner ear infection, but usually disappears without causing serious harm to the body.
A person experiencing labyrinthitis may also have the inclination to react and panic, have palpitations of the heart, or feel overly depressed. Panic disorders can be traced due to disrupted sensations transported to the brain causing the body to react impulsively. Anxiety based reactions can be reduced through different exercise methods, recommended and approved medicine (for depression).
People experiencing labyrinthitis are requested to consult their doctor, seek medical assistance, and rest. They should also avoid driving, using machines or doing activities that require active body engagements to help them avoid further injuries.
Sometimes, taking care of the ear can be neglected until such time when a problem occurs. Prevention is always better than cure. Always keep your ears clean and avoid anything that can harm them because a small problem can turn into a serious one.
Here are some popular pages: