In children, infections of the ears can sometimes (although rarely) cause inner ear damage that can lead to changes in hearing. So look out for any signs of hearing loss, and discuss anything unusual you notice with your doctor right away. If you do give your child a low dose of an over-the-counter painkiller to reduce symptoms, be careful not to use aspirin. Aspirin has anti-inflammatory effects but isn’t always well-tolerated by children and teenagers, so use ibuprofen unless a doctor has prescribed another drug or — preferably — natural pain relievers if you can.
If you suspect that you might have developed mastoiditis, we highly recommend that you seek the advice of a doctor as soon as possible. They will invite you for an initial ear examination, where they will look inside your ear to evaluate your ear's function and check for any inflammation. If they suspect you have an infection, they may recommend further tests to confirm the diagnosis, which may include x-rays, blood tests and swabbed ear-fluid cultures. If your infection is thought to be severe, you may also be sent for a CT or MRI scan.