Infection of the middle ear is the most common cause of temporary hearing loss in children. Middle ear infection is also known as otitis media or glue ear in children.

At any given time one out of every three primary school age children will have some form of middle ear condition.

When the middle ear does not work well, the ear structures are  less capable of carrying sound vibrations to the inner ear. The type of hearing loss this causes is referred to as conductive because the sound is prevented from being properly 'conducted' through the middle ear to the hearing nerves in the inner ear.

Treatment for ear infection

You should seek a consultation with an ENT specialist in cases of recurring or long standing ear infections.


In cases of recurring or long-standing middle ear infection, myringotomy surgery could be recommended to remove fluid form the middle ear and may be accompanied by inserting grommets into the ear.

A grommet is a tiny tube inserted into the eardrum to allow air to enter the middle ear. The grommet does the work that the poorly functioning Eustachian tube should be doing, giving the middle ear a chance to recover.

Grommets cause no discomfort while in place. The healing ability of the eardrum is so great that it usually pushes the tube out in 6 to 12 months, leaving the drum intact.