Earache is a common disorder, resulting either from infection in the outer ear canal or the middle ear.

Causes and Symptoms

Outer ear canal infection is common in summer during the swimming season, and can be localised as an itchy, foul-smelling, painful boil or furuncle. Middle ear infection is more common in very young children, and may be accompanied by high fever, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea.


Garlic: The use of garlic has been found beneficial in the treatment of earache. Three cloves should be warmed and mashed with a pinch of salt. This mixture should be wrapped in a piece of woollen cloth and placed on the painful ear. Simultaneously, two or three cloves of garlic should be chewed daily for a few days. This will give relief.

Garlic oil is also a popular remedy for earache. If garlic oil is not available, a few peeled cloves of garlic can be put in a tablespoon of any sweet oil, except groundnut oil. This oil should be heated, till the oil becomes brown and the garlic pieces charred. The oil should then be filtered and cooled, and a few drops should be put into the affected ear. This will give immediate relief.

Marigold; The leaves of this flower are another effective home remedy for earache. These leaves should be warmed and the lukewarm juice of these leaves should be extracted. Two or three drops of this juice can be put in the affected ear with gratifying results.

Holy Basil: The leaves of holy basil are considered beneficial in the treatment of earache. The juice of these leaves should be extracted and two or three drops put in the ear for relieving the pain.

Alkanet Root: The herb alkanet root is commonly available in a grocer’s shop. Boiled in mustard oil, it makes an effective medicine for earache. About 125 gm of black mustard oil should be boiled in a tin basin on a gentle fire. Then twelve grams of alkanet root should be put in this oil and allowed to burn in it The oil should be filtered when cooled and filled in a bottle. Two or three drops of this oil should be put in the ear in case of emergency. This will give great relief.

Dhatura Leaves: The juice of the leaves of the dhatura plant boiled in sesame [til) oil can also be used beneficially as a medicine for earache. About 25 ml each of the juice of dhatura leaves and sesame oil should be boiled in a tin basin on a gentle fire. When half the juice remains, about seven leaves of gigantic swallow wart (Alt), smeared with sesame oil and sprinkled with powdered salt, should also be put in this oil. It should be boiled till the leaves are burnt. The oil should, thereafter, be filtered through a coarse cloth and preserved safely in a bottle. A few drops of this oil dropped in the ear will cure the earache.

Bishop’s Weed: This herb is beneficial for an earache. About half a teaspoon of the seeds is heated in 30 ml of milk, till the essence of the seeds permeates the milk. The milk is then filtered and used as ear-drops. Two or three drops put twice daily will decrease congestion and relieve pain.

Cloves: A clove should be sauted in a teaspoon of sesame (til) oil, and three to five drops of this warm oil should be put into the affected ear two or three times daily. This will provide relief.

Dietary Considerations

The person suffering from earache should take an all-fruit diet for three to five days. After that, a well-balanced diet comprising wholegrain cereals, raw or highly-cooked vegetables, and fresh fruits may be taken. White flour and sugar and their products, pickles, condiments, and flesh foods should be avoided, along with food which raise the amount of phlegm, such as milled rice, sugar, and lentils.

Other Measures

During the all-fruit diet, a warm-water enema should be used daily to cleanse the system. Regular exercises, outdoor games, and fresh air are important The patient should sit in the sun and allow the sunlight to penetrate the inner part of his ear for fifteen minutes. This will stop the discharge of pus from the ear.

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