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Pain behind the ear: Causes and Treatment

Pain Behind The Ear: Causes and Treatment

The onset of pain behind the ear may be the onset of a health disorder. In some circumstances, it can be the result of complications of diseases and even appear for unknown causes for those who suffer. In these cases, it is best to go to the doctor to determine the source of the discomfort.

The causes of pain behind the ear are multiple, ranging from nerve damage to dental problems. All of them must be evaluated, diagnosed and treated by specialists according to the patient’s symptoms. In this article, we explain in detail the causes and treatment of pain behind the ear.

Causes of pain behind the ear

There are several causes of pain behind the ear, including:

  • Occipital neuralgia: This is an abnormality that occurs when nerves that go from the top of the spinal cord to the head through the scalp, become inflamed or an injury occurs. This type of pain is chronic, throbbing and perforating. Many describe it as resembling the sensation of having received an electric shock at the level of the neck or behind the ear. Frequently, pain occurs on only one side of the head. You can get detailed information about this condition in the article Occipital neuralgia: symptoms and treatment.
  • Mastoiditis: is an infection of the mastoid bone of the skull, which is located just behind the ear. This infectious process is much more common in children than in adults. It is characterized by pain behind the ear accompanied by fever, headache, ear discharge and even hearing loss in the affected ear.
  • Dysfunction of the temporomandibular joint: this joint may become inflamed and cause pain behind the ear.
  • Chronic neck tension: in this case, the nerves of the occipital region are involved, which can cause, in addition to headache from behind, general malaise.
  • Ear infection: The presence of microbes in the ear area or the buildup of fluid inside the ear, in addition to a complicated cold, can easily be the cause of the pain behind the ear.
  • Tympanic membrane injury: The tympanic membrane can be injured by trauma, viral or bacterial infections, which trigger the aforementioned pain behind the ear.
  • Dental problems: Injuries to the mouth or teeth occasionally cause pain that is reflected behind the ear. In this case, it will be easy to determine that it is a dental problem when there is also bad breath, difficulty chewing or sensitivity in the gums.
  • Throat Conditions: When the throat is sore, swollen or irritated, pain in the neck behind the ear may be experienced.

Read Also: How to Remove a Grain in the Ear

Treatment of pain behind the ear

The medical consultation is essential, since the treatment of pain behind the ear will depend exclusively on the condition or condition that is causing said symptom. Medical treatment may include the following:

  • To relieve pain, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory analgesics (NSAIDs) may be prescribed.
  • Applying cold to the affected area can help reduce discomfort.
  • Heat therapy can help in cases of muscle or nervous contractures.
  • Antibiotic therapy in cases where the cause is a bacterial infection.
  • Physiotherapy or local massage for cases of muscle contracture or injury to the nervous system.

In the vast majority of cases, the treatment is symptomatic, that is, it will depend on the clinical presentation of the patient.

Read Article: Itchy Ears And Throat

Pain behind the ear
Pain behind the ear

Bundle behind the ear that hurts

If what you present is a lump behind the ear, it is important that you also know what can cause the appearance of the same and what to do about it:

  • Swollen lymph nodes: this is the result of infections with viruses or germs that affect the immune system, which is responsible for defending the body. Behind the ear, you will find lymph nodes that increase in size once the infection appears. Read about Swollen Lymph Nodes Neck
  • Acne: lesions caused by sebaceous gland disorders. The increase of fat in the area accumulates in the pores, which causes a painful increase in volume on contact. Acne lesions appear anywhere, the most common areas are the face, neck and behind the ears.
  • Lipoma: this is a benign painless lump that is formed by accumulation of fat cells.
  • Mastoiditis: As explained above, it is the infection of the bone located behind the ear. If this infection is not treated properly, it can end up causing a bulge.
  • Sebaceous cyst: a bulge formed by accumulated sebum that can appear anywhere on the body. Usually soft and when touching it does not usually hurt and can move.
  • Other causes could be dermatitis, allergic reactions, tumors, infection in the scalp or thyroid disorders.

In most cases, the lump behind the ear disappears spontaneously after days. However, if it lasts or presents with pain, in addition to other symptoms such as those mentioned below, you should consult with the doctor as soon as possible:

  • Blood secretion and serous fluid.
  • Itching
  • Change of coloration.
  • Deformity.

The doctor will make the diagnosis and indicate the treatment to be followed according to the type of lesion that is present.

In some cases, surgical procedures are required to remove the lesion. Also you can read more about this topic here Healthline.

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