Ear infections in children are extremely common. I can't tell you how often a parent brings their child into my office to make sure they don't have an ear infection or to get treatment for an ear infection. In children there's two different types of ear infections that are the most common. There are outer ear infections and then inner ear infections. Outer ear infections are those infections that you think about that happen most of the time in the summer time months. They happen when your kids are swimming a lot because their ears are moist. Those type of infections need to be treated with a visit to your doctor and prescription ear drops. To prevent ear infections, I often times tell parents to keep their child's ears dry. After your child is swimming or takes a bath it's nice to have them towel dry their ear or even tilt their head to the side to let the water drip out. If you know that your child's eardrum is not perforated, you can actually buy over the counter drops that will help to dry your child's ear out. A homemade version of this combines white vinegar and rubbing alcohol and you can mix those two and put them into your child's ear to keep it dry. The other type of ear infection that we see in children are inner ear infections. Now treatment for inner ear infections really depends on the age of the child. If your child is under two years of age, they'll likely need to get a prescription oral antibiotic from your child's doctor. If your child is over the age of two, they often times don't need to have a prescription oral antibiotics. We often times will wait 48 hours to see if their ear pain will go away because we know that over 80% of ear infections are caused by viruses and don't need treatment with antibiotics at all. Regardless of the age of your child, the most important thing is going to be to keep your child comfortable. You really want to make sure that you address your child's pain.