Dr. Pamela Smith, ND 

Dr. Pam has a family practice at The Nest Family Wellness Centre which offers naturopathic and midwifery care. She combines science-based natural medicine with conventional medical therapeutics. Learn more about Dr. Pam and the services offered by her clinic here, or book an appointment at www.drpamelasmith.com.

Check out the latest Ask Dr Pam Q&A and posts by topic below as well as her health and wellness posts.

Ask Dr Pam   

Is there a natural way of helping to draw an infection out of my child's ear?

You should never place anything inside your child’s ear unless instructed by your child’s doctor. However, it is ok to place a warm, or cold – depending on your child’s preference, compress overtop of the ear. Here are instructions on how to use a warm onion as a drawing agent to help draw the infection out of the ear. Sounds crazy but it works!

Onion Poultice
Cut an onion in half and bake at 350° for 15-20 min or until you can smell the onion cooking.  
Alternatively, you can place the cut onion in boiling water for 5-10 minutes. 

Hold the hot onion with an oven mitt and place the cut side next to the affected ear(s).  Move the onion closer to the ear as it cools, and once on the ear, leave for at least 10 minutes.  As the onion is being held to the ear, gently massage downward from behind the ear towards the neck to encourage the Eustachian tube to open and drain.  The onion provides soothing warmth, antibacterial oils, and promotes drainage.  Repeat as often as necessary.

For more about ear infections, check out this post and other responses to the question: I hate seeing my little girl in such discomfort when she has an ear infection, is there anything I can do at home to help her out?