Ear infections can make falling asleep difficult and disrupt sleep throughout the night. The pain, pressure, and overall discomfort in the ear can keep you tossing and turning. Plus, lying down can aggravate symptoms, making it hard to find a restful position.
While getting a good night’s rest may seem impossible with an ear infection, there are steps you can take to make sleeping with an ear infection more comfortable. Trying different sleeping positions, using ear drops and warm compresses, taking over-the-counter pain relievers, and utilizing pillows and props can help take pressure off the infected ear and enable better quality sleep.
Tips For Sleeping With An Ear Infection
Read on for tips that can aid sleep when dealing with an ear infection. This guide also covers answers to common questions about managing ear pain at night and when to seek medical treatment. With the right strategy, you can minimize discomfort and achieve more restorative rest while recovering.
By employing these tips, you can take pressure off the delicate ear structures and make falling and staying asleep easier when dealing with an ear infection. Pay attention to which positions alleviate discomfort at night. Get up and reposition yourself whenever needed for relief.
While sleeping with an ear infection can be challenging, making thoughtful adjustments to your sleep position, environment, and use of medication can provide significant relief and help you get proper rest. Keep the infected ear elevated, use warmth and pain-reducers judiciously, and find angles that prevent unnecessary pressure. Maintain follow-ups with your doctor as well.
Pay attention to your body’s signals, and don’t hesitate to adjust pillows and switch sides during the night for comfort. With the right remedies and posture modifications, peaceful sleep is still possible while your ear heals from infection. Just take care not to ignore severe symptoms, as immediate medical treatment is vital in these cases. With patience and proper care, you’ll be back to your normal sleep routine in no time.
Sleeping upright can take pressure off the inner ear and minimize pain. Try propping yourself up with pillows in bed or sleep in a recliner. Just avoid sleeping completely upright, as fluid might have trouble draining from the ear.
Doctors generally don’t recommend using cotton balls to plug up the ears during an infection. The cotton fibers can stick to the inflamed canal and worsen irritation. Cotton swabs should also never be inserted into the infected ear.
Applying a warm (not hot) compress right before bedtime can temporarily relieve pain. But don’t sleep with a heating pad on the infected ear as it poses a burn risk. Also avoid ice packs, as extreme cold could damage the eardrum.
For mild infections limited to the outer ear canal, sleeping on the side of the affected ear is fine, as long as you’re not putting direct pressure on the tender spot. But if the middle or inner ear is infected, it’s best to sleep on the opposite side.
No, avoid sleeping on your back if this puts uncomfortable pressure on the infected ear. Sleep on the side opposite the problem ear or prop yourself up with pillows. Don’t force a position that worsens pain and irritation. Get up and change positions if needed.