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Blocked ears - anyone used olive oil ? Is he really deaf?

(17 Posts)
Magscat Wed 18-May-05 21:11:54

Ds is nearly 4 and for the past year or so has had a habit of saying 'what?' almost every time he's spoken to. We're pretty sure that his hearing is basically ok but that his ears are getting blocked every time he has a cold.

The GP advised dripping olive oil into his ear. Anyone done this?
How much oil are we talking about?
DOes it have to be warm?
How soon should we notice an improvment?

I'm not sure now whether he sometimes says 'What?' as soon as we start to talk to him purely out of habit. He usually seems able to hear phrases like 'do you want some chocolate?' but not 'get yourself dressed please'.

Trouble is if I ask him if he really can not hear he says 'no' if it's because he wants the telly louder or 'yes' he can hear if I say he needs to go to the doctor.
I can't tell how much he is really hearing.

Any advice?

PrettyCandles Wed 18-May-05 21:21:36

It could well be selective deafness, or it could well be deafness that comes and goes. We've had both. At this age both are genuine, in their own ways. To test for genuine deafness, talk to him very quietly behind his back (not when he's watching TV though), gradually getting louder.

The olive oil works wonders for our ds. I keep some in a little bottle with a pipette top and drip a couple of drops in each ear after the bath. I warm the oil first either by having it in my jeans pocket for half an hour or so, or by standing it in a glass of hand-hot water fro a few minutes. If it's at room temperature it's unpleasant, but warm it's quite nice. Then I massage his ear canal from behind his ear, and gently tug his ear a bit to help the oil dribble down. Put a thick towel on your lap and get him to put his head on your lap. Don't do it minutes before he gets into bed or you'll have a greasy bed.

When ds's hearing was at its worst, he suddenly improved after two weeks. Now we don't wait until it gets bad, as soon as we notice a problem we start using the oil and his hearing improves within a week.


Magscat Wed 18-May-05 21:27:27

Thanks, that's really helpful. Part of the problem I have with the oil is that he won't let me do it so I'm planning on dripping it into his ear while he's asleep. Do you think this would be a waste of time cos I won't be able to massage it in?

Magscat Thu 19-May-05 09:02:42

Bump to see if the day timers have any advice

oliveoil Thu 19-May-05 09:07:26

No advice but I saw my name in the title and wondered .

Can you use normal ear drops for young children? My dh uses one he buys over the counter in Boots, not sure of the age restrictions though.

Magscat Thu 19-May-05 09:14:56

Not sure about ear drops - it was the GP that mentioned olive oil so thought I'd try that first.

Mud Thu 19-May-05 09:22:06

offer him sweets / chocolate or a new toy and never repeat it when he says 'what' - you'll soon find out if he's putting it on

I would say 2 -3 drops warm (not hot) olive oil

Prettybird Thu 19-May-05 09:48:45

We also use olive oil on ds (4.5), on the GP's advice. It seems to help ward off ear infections.

Ds deson't mind it too much. I don't warm it or anything - just put a couple of drops in and squdge his ear around a wee bit. I sometimes do it when he is in bed - the pillow cases can always be washed!

Magscat Thu 19-May-05 09:49:40

I've tried bribing him - he still resists.
Have tried refusing to repeat and he insists he hasn't heard.
I think part of the problem is genuine but comes & goes & the rest of the time it's selective hearing/bad habit.

Prettybird Thu 19-May-05 09:53:26

Do it when he is aslepp then. If you massage gently, it shouldn't wake him up - and even if he does, the deed has already been done!

Magscat Thu 19-May-05 09:57:33

Thanks. Got a few drops in one ear last night but he was waking up so I scarpered.

How long before I should see/hear some results?
Will I see any gunk coming out or just notice that he's hearing better (hopefully)?

tarantula Thu 19-May-05 10:07:36

Looks like the age old remedies are still the best then My mum always swore by olive oil in the ears. It does work wonders. You may see some gunk coming out but sometimes there isnt any.

PrettyCandles Thu 19-May-05 13:19:59

I don't know whether you really need to massage the ear, but it felt right to do it. We don't always see any gunk coming out, but if any does then I just wrap a piece of toilet paper round my finger and wipe it out once it has come over the edge of the tube and into the outer ear. If you try to wipe while it's in the tube you're likely to push it back in. I don't suppose you need to wipe it out anyway, I just hate the idea of oily earwax ground into the rug!

If he asks you to repeat, make sure he is looking at you when you repeat. That will help him to understand if he really can't hear you clearly.

bigdonna Thu 19-May-05 21:24:10

my dd speech was not good so the doctor advised me to put olive oil in her ears to melt the wax i put this in for 1 month,eventually she had to have them hoovered out at the hospital.this did help her hearing.

cori Thu 19-May-05 21:33:02

Ds says 'huh' a lot, especially after we asked him a question. I think its a game really, because he knows we will repeat ourselves. Usually if we dont repeat the question, he will answer us in his own time.

Bozza Thu 19-May-05 21:48:30

The doctor actually prescribed the pipette and olive oil for DS after a cold had left him blocked up.

Lucymoo Fri 20-May-05 21:03:24

Hello,my partner has always had problems with his ears.To begin with the silly beggar was using cooking olive oil instead of medicated.He says that its better to warm it up a little for it to melt the wax.Just a few drops,then he gently pulls the lobe down for the oil to go down.I hope this helps.

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