by Ronnenberg A

Ear infections often happen during or after another infection, such as a cold or sore throat . They may also happen because of allergies.

The Ear
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Some children may not have problems. Others may have:

  • Ear pain—babies may tug at their ears or be fussy while older children may be able to let caregivers know about the pain
  • Fever and chills
  • Hearing loss
  • Problems sleeping
  • Irritability
  • Lack of hunger or problems feeding
  • Drainage from the ear
  • Problems with balance
  • Lightheadedness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea


Acute otitis media (AOM) in children. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Accessed May 17, 2022.

Ear infections in children. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders website. Available at: Accessed May 17, 2022.

Middle ear infections. Healthy Children—American Academy of Pediatrics website. Available at: Accessed May 17, 2022.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: EBSCO Medical Review Board Kari Kuenn, MD
  • Review Date: 11/2021
  • Update Date: 05/17/2022