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You might consider using essential oils for earaches and ear pain or infection only if the problem is in the external ear canal. Middle or inner ear infections require professional attention — consult a healthcare provider as appropriate to avoid possible damage to the eardrum.
Important: Never put essential oils directly into your ears. However, you can put diluted essential oil on a cotton ball and place it in the outer ear.
The Complete Aromatherapy and Essential Oils Handbook for Everyday Wellness suggests the following essential oils:
You can also make blends to massage around the outside of your ear. Massage around both ears (even if only one ear aches) every few hours. Also massage the ear lobes.
Ear pain blend #1:
Source: Massage & Aromatherapy: Simple Techniques at Home
Ear pain blend #2:
Source: Essential Oils For Healing
Ear pain blend #3:
Source: The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy
For children, you can make a warm compress using essential oils for earaches:
After using the compress, make a blend of:
Dab a cotton ball in the blend. Gently place the cotton ball in the ear, replacing the cotton ball with a new one three times a day.
Source: Healing With Aromatherapy
Seek professional help for infections. Use these aromatherapy blends as adjunct therapy.
For ear infections in adults, blend:
Massage the blend around the outside of your ear and down your neck.
For children, use only four drops of each essential oil in the olive oil. For infants and toddlers, blend only two drops of each essential oil with the olive oil.
Source: Aromatherapy for Dummies
An alternative blend is
For children, use half the amount of essential oil.
Source: Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art
For best results, use these blends around both ears, even if you have pain on only one side. Continue using the blend for several days after the pain goes away so the problem doesn't return.
Photo Credit: Iain via Wikimedia Commons [CC-BY-SA-3.0]