CAUSES OF PAIN BEHIND THE EAR
CAUSES OF PAIN BEHIND THE EAR : Earache is a common phenomenon due to many reasons that is experienced by almost all of us at some point in our lives. Many of these issues will resolve in a matter of days without causing any long lasting sequel. At the same time, many of these pains will respond to simple analgesics and certain home remedies and would not require the patients to seek expert medical opinion. But, in certain instances, when the pain persist, associated with a discharge, causes hearing difficulty or else has an associated fever, it may require expert opinion in order to prevent further complications.
What can lead to an earache?
An earache would most often be the result of an inflammation, infection or an injury to structures in the ear or at times it may be due to the pressure difference within the ear cavity as well. As such, simple colds, climbing high altitudes or air travel, high frequency noises, loud noises, middle ear infections or otitis media, inflammation of the external ear canal, blockage of the canal joining the middle ear and the oral cavity, toothache or infections in the oral cavity…etc can cause pain within the ear.
What constitutes back of the ear?
Back of the ear would be the area in which neck muscles attaches themselves to the skull and would consist of soft tissues as well as bony structures. The mastoid process of the skull will be in relation to the back of the ear along with lymph nodes which drains the scalp, neck and the inner structures. Apart from these, blood vessels can also traverse this area along with the regional nerves.
What can cause pain behind the ear?
As mentioned before, injuries, infections, inflammation and other such insults can give rise to pain behind the ear and should be looked closely and be vigilant about its progression in order to prevent any serious conditions which can affect hearing as well as the overall health.
Thus, following are some of the conditions which can give rise to a pain behind the ear.
A simple cold can give rise to congestion in the sinuses and the ear canals which can manifest as a pain behind the ear. Home remedies such as hot fermentation, steam inhalation, decongesting agents can all relieve such pain and if persistent, needs to be evaluated by a medical professional in order to prevent further complications.
When the sinuses become congested, especially the ones related to back of the ear, it can give rise to a local pain just over these sinuses. It can most probably be associated with other symptoms of sinusitis such as headache, heaviness in the head, localized tenderness…etc and often can be relieved with decongestant medications and home remedies along with drinking plenty of fluids to make the secretions thin.
When the neck muscles become stretched or if the neck was kept in an odd posture for a prolonged period, it can lead to the development of pain in the affected muscles and thus the pain behind the ear at the site of its attachments.
In infection related to the scalp as well to the oral cavity, the lymph nodes behind the back of the ear can become infected and results in swelling which at times lead to pain as well.
When simple colds and sinusitis doesn’t get enough attention, it can lead to more serious conditions such as mastoiditis and it can be characterized by tenderness behind the ear over the mastoid process as well as redness and feeling of generalized ill health with a possible fever.
Apart from the above causes, certain condition which affects the blood vessels such as insults to the nerves can also give rise to pain behind the ear.
Article source: http://www.helium.com/items/1792687-causes-of-pain-behind-the-ear
Submited By: Dr Pandula Siribaddana