In general, pain in the ear accompanied by fever are ear symptoms that require medical attention. This could indicate an infection, which requires a doctor's care. Young children and infants with ear symptoms that include pain, fever, and rash should also be examined by a medical professional. Whenever an injury to the ear has occurred that causes pain and bleeding or disturbances in hearing, immediate medical attention should be sought.
In many cases, minor ear complaints are common and may disappear in a day or two without any medical intervention or treatment. These may include a feeling of stuffiness or minor pressure in the ear. These ear symptoms may be caused by high altitude or allergies. In many cases, discomfort may last a short time, such as a few hours or a day.
Ear injuries can be serious and failure to seek medical attention quickly can cause permanent hearing loss. A foreign object that has pierced the inner ear, for example, may rupture the eardrum and may cause serious complications. Medical attention is necessary for such emergencies. This type of injury is more common in very young children than in adults.
Some ear symptoms involving hearing may develop rapidly with no prior warning. If an individual who has always enjoyed good hearing suddenly develops difficulty in hearing or distortion in sound, this could be a cause for concern. Therefore, it is wise to seek medical attention for any dramatic, sudden changes in hearing.
Ringing in the ears, as well as difficulties with equilibrium are ear symptoms that require medical attention. If accompanied by bouts of dizziness, this could indicate a condition known as tinnitus. Tinnitus refers to a set of symptoms involving the ear and hearing, and can usually be treated through various methods, including medication. Underlying medical conditions may exist.
If a person shows symptoms such as redness, skin scaling, or flakiness and swelling along the side of the ear, this could be allergy related. Medical treatment may include antihistamines. In a worst case scenario, a major skin infection may be the cause, and prescription antibiotics may be needed.
Any time an individual has headache pain and soreness of the outer ear, medical attention is advised. Fluid leaking or discharged from the ear also requires medical attention. These are typical of an inner ear infection that needs to be treated.
Ear pain, along with a snapping sensation or a feeling of popping from the upper jaw most typically requires medical attention as well. These symptoms may be related to a condition known as temporomandibular joint syndrome (TMJ). With this disorder, pain in the jaw, upper or lower teeth, and the ear are common.