Ear Infections and Day Care
Answered by: Susan Eagles
Question from: Name not given
Posted on: September 24, 2000

My daughter will be two years old in October and just entered a day care environment in May. She has already had two ear infections, two colds and been prescribed three antibiotics. One of which didn’t work. I give her Echinacea, Astragalus, Whole Olive Leaf, Shitaki Mushroom, Fresh Red Root, Licorice Root, and Suma Root in tincture form added to her juice twice a day. Before daycare, she had never been sick. She is still breast fed and we both take multivitamins every day. The doctor is already talking about tubes in her ears, and an additional vaccine called Prevnar. I know she is a strong girl, I just don’t know what else to do to keep her well. Please offer any suggestions, especially regarding the ear infections. Also, please do not use my name on your site. Her dairy consumption is very limited and she only gets dairy at school (which is very difficult to avoid). Thank you for any advice you can give me. You perform a much needed and valuable service.

Children’s ear infections usually stop when they are taken completely off all dairy products. Because this is a problem common with many children, it is important that your day care facility be sensitive to this need, and your request may reinforce to them that it is important. Food additives and colourings contribute to the problem and should be avoided.

Excluding dairy from the diet means avoiding milk, cheese, yogurt, chocolate and all products containing lactose, whey and skim milk powder. Margarine often contains milk products. Even tiny amounts of dairy can trigger the immune system to cause an allergic reaction. If there is no improvement after 4-6 weeks, then dairy is not the problem. Wheat is the second most common allergy that causes ear infections.

Avoiding mucous forming foods, such as dairy, wheat and bananas, will help to decrease mucous formation in the ear. Rice products and apple juice are good substitutes.

Herbs taken internally that are helpful in strengthening the child’s system to avoid ear infection include: herbs which work on the lymphatics, such as Clivers (Galium aparine); Plantain (Plantago lanceolata) to astringe the mucous and prevent it from forming; Chamomile (Matricaria recutita) to improve the digestive system and Elderberry (Sambuca nigra) to reduce inflammation and catarrh.

When the cycle of infections has been cleared, you may be able to slowly reintroduce your child to dairy and wheat.

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