What is the best treatment for glue ear?

Glue Ears - Sriramakrishnahospital

When the middle ear becomes filled with a glue-like fluid rather than air, this condition is known as glue ear. Because of this, hearing function is impaired. Most cases get better on their own without any help from a doctor. 

If the glue ear persists, surgery to drain the fluid and insert ventilation tubes (grommets) is suggested. This article gives information regarding the glue ear and the best treatment that is available to treat. 

An overview of glue ear:

When fluid accumulates in the middle ear (the area behind the eardrum), a common ailment known as glue ear can develop in your child. Medical professionals may refer to the glue ear as otitis media with effusion (OME) or secretory otitis media. 

Both of your child’s ears may be affected by glue ear. Even though it usually occurs after an ear infection, other potential triggers exist. Even though glue ear is usually a short-term problem, if it persists for an extended period, it might impair your child’s hearing.

Who gets affected by glue ear?

Infants and young children (those younger than six) are prone to developing glue ears. However, adults are not immune to getting glue ears. Seeking help from an ear doctor in Coimbatore as soon as the signs appear is the best way to stop the condition from progressing.

The signs that can indicate glue ear in adults and children:

The glue ear’s most noticeable symptom is a diminished ability to hear. Glue ear is often painless, making it difficult to diagnose. Adults may experience a similar muffled effect or diminished hearing to that of ear plugs.

A child’s inability to communicate their hearing loss may be beyond their developmental stage. Warning indicators may include:

  • Disinterest in listening to noises
  • Ignore you or act as if you don’t exist
  • Asking for a repetition 
  • Needing a louder volume
  • Issues with language acquisition
  • Fluid buildup isn’t painful in most cases, but it might disrupt sleep.

The treatment options that are recommended for glue ear:

Glue ear can sometimes clear up on its own without medical intervention. It is common for your child’s doctor to wait many months to see whether the fluid goes out independently. 

Some possible glue ear treatments for your child’s symptoms if they don’t improve on their own:

Active monitoring:

In most cases, the prognosis is good enough to delay treatment. Waiting three months is the typical time frame recommended by doctors to determine if the glue ear resolves independently. Active monitoring is another name for patient watchfulness. Some youngsters, like those with Down syndrome, don’t have the opportunity to wait.


Myringotomy is a surgical procedure that may be recommended by your child’s doctor at a Coimbatore ent hospital. The doctor will make a tiny incision in your child’s eardrum to facilitate fluid movement from the middle ear. 

The specialist may insert a small, hollow ear tube into the opening. When placed in the ear, the tube helps equalize pressure between the middle and outer ear, relieving discomfort. Additionally, it facilitates fluid movement from your child’s middle ear to their external ear. Within a year, the tube naturally falls out.


Your child may need an adenoidectomy if your ENT determines that swollen adenoids are to blame for their sticky ear. A myringotomy is often performed simultaneously with this treatment by specialists. Your child’s adenoid specialist will remove their swollen adenoids during an adenoidectomy.

Hearing aids:

An assistive listening device, or hearing aid, is an instrument that boosts audible volume. Your child’s doctor may suggest hearing aids to help with temporary hearing loss. While waiting for the glue ear to clear up, many kids use them.

Along with all these, there is an option called a grommet, a minor procedure that helps children with glue ears.


Grommets may be helpful if glue ear lasts longer than three months, returns frequently, or negatively impacts hearing. Grommets are tiny plastic tubes inserted into the eardrum to restore ventilation to the middle ear. These procedures are performed at a medical facility. When the middle ear is no longer blocked, normal hearing is restored.

Grommets in the ear are only a temporary solution to the condition. They will eventually fall out of the eardrum, and the wound they were protecting will close. By that time, the Eustachian tubes of the infant should have fully developed, making it less likely that they will become blocked and allowing air to freely enter the middle ear without the need for any intervention.

The major preventive measures that are associated with glue ears:

Preventing glue ear is difficult; however, the following measures may help:

  • Keep your baby on the breast for as long as possible; research suggests that doing so may help prevent ear infections in infants. Because nursing strengthens the immune system, which is the body’s main line of defense against infectious diseases, this may be the case.
  • During bottle feeding, make sure the infant is sitting up straight.
  • Stop giving your child a dummy (pacifier) after they turn 11 months old, as this increases the likelihood that they may get glue ear.

Outlook of the condition:

In the vast majority of instances, nothing needs to be done. But hearing loss caused by fluid buildup in your child’s ears might cause speech delay and language problems. Make an appointment with your ENT Specialist if you observe any symptoms. It is generally not a safe choice to try remedies for glue ear, as the ear is a sensitive organ and medical help is required.

Glue Ear-Sriramakrishnahospital

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