Cure ear infections with garlic

garlicbulbandclovesIf you’ve ever had an ear infection, you know how annoying it can be.

Ear infections are usually accompanied by a low-grade fever. You might experience pain in one or both ears. Depending on the severity of your ear infection, you might feel:

  • slight discomfort in the ear while swallowing
  • some pain when relieving air pressure within the ears (this happens whenever your altitude is changing, e.g. going down an elevator of a high-rise, in an airplane that’s ascending or descending, driving down a mountainous area, etc.)
  • the feeling of a “bubble” popping in your ear, particularly when you lie down. The popping is usually very painful.

Ear infections treated by a doctor will usually involve a round of powerful antibiotics and ear drops. It usually takes more than a week to resolve severe cases.

If you don’t have access to a doctor, there is an incredibly effective home remedy you can try — the humble garlic.

I have used garlic to treat my own ear infections, each time with great success.

What you’ll need

One clove of fresh garlic. Thick tissues or some thin cloth (you can just cut up an old cotton handkerchief).

How to do it

1) Chop the garlic into tiny pieces. They should be small enough to fit into your ear.

2) Wrap a pinch of the finely chopped garlic into some thick tissue or cloth. Twist the end so that the garlic is encased tightly.

3) Place the wrapped garlic securely in your ear (with the twisted end sticking out of your ear). You don’t need to shove it in deep, just place it securely enough that it doesn’t fall out when you tilt your head. Remember that for this to work, you only need the fumes of the garlic, not the actual garlic itself or the garlic juice.

It’s best to do this right before you go to bed, so that the garlic fumes will work throughout the night while you sleep. It’s also a good idea to do it while you sleep for social reasons (people may not understand why you have stuck garlic in your ears :) ).

Garlic works fairly quickly, and you should feel a lot less pain after a night with the garlic in your ears. For more severe cases, continue using fresh garlic a couple more nights to thoroughly kill the infection.

Why it works

Garlic is a powerful anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal ingredient.

The power of garlic is such that even its fumes have been clinically proven to kill bacteria such as:

- shigella flexneri (causes diarrhea),
– salmonella typhi (causes typhoid),
– shigella sonnei (causes bacillary dysentery),
– aeromonas hydrophila (causes gastroenteritis, is very resistant and hard to kill),
– branhamella catarrhalis (causes bronchitis, sinusitis, and laryngitis), and
– staphylococcus aureus (causes a wide a range of illnesses)

35 thoughts on “Cure ear infections with garlic”

  1. I agree. Garlic is a natural antiseptic and as such can be used for various ailments. Thanks for the tips.

  2. I’m trying it now; using the tube without paper method. At first it burned a lot, but I can definately feel it work. Man, it is fast!

  3. im scared to try this.. im using 2 different antibiotics.. one to drink and the other one are drops for the ear…

    1. Hi Ivan, I remember being scared also at first, but once I tried it, I found garlic to be much more pleasant to use than antibiotics. I remember the dropper my doctor gave me, everytime I put a drop in my ear, I could taste it in the back of my throat. The antibiotics also failed to work for me, perhaps my infection was too severe. Meanwhile, the garlic works only through its “fumes”. If you wrap the garlic up properly before inserting, no garlic will actually enter your ear at all. It is quite safe.

  4. Wow….I’m not going to lie. I thought this sounded crazy! But, I started getting an ear ache (possible infection) that accompanied my cold. I didn’t want to go to the doctor ($$$$). So I decided to try it. I just took a clove of garlic and dug my fingernails into it to really let the fumes and juices flow and then I took a band-aid and essentially taped the clove to the inside of my ear. Within an hour or two I felt the pressure subsiding. My ear still feels uncomfortable after having the clove in my ear for about 3 hours. But now I’m going to bed with it. Crossing my fingers!

      1. I use the open garlic band-aid method whenever my son or I have an ear infection, I think it works better than the wrapped up garlic method. It works faster, although the hearing is impaired from that side I can still hear clearer with the band-aid than tissue. I’m actually doing it now after a week of antibiotics not killing the pain or infection. Been about thirty minutes and I no longer feel like my head is stuck underwater!

  5. I thought this was crazy, but my ear was pounding and I was miserable. Within 10 min, I had no more pain. I was shocked. Made me a believer!

  6. I have heard of this solution using garlic. I was investigating on the web to see if people are crazy…they are not. My daughter already feels better and it not holding her ear. I have left it in for about 2 hours.

    I will repeat this evening.

    Many Thanks to all
    J (Canada)

  7. I tried this (a clove on the ear with tissue) after Rx ear drops and pain killers just weren’t doing the trick. I was desperate to get rid of the pain and swelling. So, last night at around 7 pm, I used the garlic. Within 5 minutes, my ear began to burn and pop a little. Within 15 minutes, the pain had significantly decreased. I left the garlic in for 2 hours and this morning, the ear infection is 1/2 the severity that it was yesterday as far as swelling and pain. I recommend trying this, especially if you are at the end of your rope and in a great deal of pain. I am at work now with a new fresh clove in the ear. I work in a place with only one other co-worker and he is out most of the time. Cool. I’ve had ear infections since I moved to this more humid climate. Now I have an idea on how to relieve the problem. Thanks for the article.

  8. Oh my god….this sounds amazing! Very strange I’ve never heard of this before….will definitely be doing this for myself & my husband!

    I do know, however, that garlic works incredibly well for warts. I oldest son was prone to strange warts when he was very young. Every once in a while he’d get a wart that would grow on the edge of his finger & spread underneath his fingernail. Just one. But it would get very big. One night I strapped a piece of garlic to it, cut side down, using a band-aid. He slept with it on overnight. The next morning when we took it off, the wart had pulled away from the sides of the skin where it was embedded. It was very odd looking. But it was obviously working & was causing no pain to my son, so we strapped another fresh piece on the same way & left it all day Saturday. By that night when I checked it, the wart was literally nearly falling out of the spot where it was embedded. I told my son to go wash his hands before bed. As he was washing, the wart literally just fell out of his finger. Root & all! It was very strange looking. It actually left a hole where the wart was, but it wasn’t bleeding or anything. I applied some healing calendula salve to it overnight & by the morning it looked semi normal & the edge of his nail was reattaching itself to his finger. It was totally healed up in a couple of days & left no scar. I never saw him with a wart again after that time, either!

    Garlic is great, powerful stuff! :-)

  9. Hi i am reading this site on home remdies for ear infection the garlic remedy i will try. nothing have work wish me luck

  10. I am currently typing with a wad of kitchen roll sticking out of my ear and would probably put in a mental place if another person saw me. IT IS BURNING MY EAR!!! Is that meant to happen? i hope it is doing some good!

    1. I’m super health nut, but I ended up serioulsy sick for one year with a mystery illness, I think the doctor I fired was convinced I was going to pass away. My weight fell from 110 to 99 I;m 5’5 I ended up one day in a wheelchair at the hospital I could no longer walk the distance at the hospital I was having shortness of breath, my ears were sensitive and whirling I was wheezing at time and my lungs hurt and apparently were inflamed. ,. I felt my heart racing at times, I had to insist with ENT doctor to do a nasal smear Postive for ECOLI AND FUNGUS everything the doctor gave me made me sicker I couldn’t take it anymore. I did research and started chewing on Garlic everydayand placing it between the lower back teeth, DO NOT let it get on your gums and tongue it burns to much. I started grinding 10 garlic cloves in my magic bulle t and put it in a bowl right on my the night stand close to where I sleep so I can breath in the fumes,. and I put slice up pieces wrap in cotton balls and place in in the ear with a fleece had on my head to hold it into place overnight… I happen to love garlic so does my husband so everyday we eat garlic in salsa Anyhow garlic cured me …garlic fumes can kill within 7 inches raduis …amazing

  11. I cut up a piece of a bandana, since it’s thin cloth like a handkerchief and placed it in my ear and my ear is burning, too. Must be the garlic juice againt my skin in my ear?

    1. There shouldn’t be any garlic juice. All you have to do is slice the garlic and the fumes are supposed to do the work. Don’t squeeze/mash/pinch the garlic, simply cut them before encasing them. This remedy isn’t like the antibiotic ear droppers that doctors prescribe, where you’d need to have liquid squeezed into the ear canal.

    1. Hi Susan, I think it should work the same — the cloth is just to hold the small pieces together and so they won’t fall into the ear.

      Also watch out for burning, that’s a possibility since you’ve got cut garlic right against your skin.

  12. Thanks Samantha! I figured out a simple and powerful way to use garlic
    .I purchased Kyolic a aged garlic liquid extract, again this is liquid and I put a few drops in my Neti Pot with distilled water couple drops of natural apple cider vinegar and then rinsed my sinuses with this 3- 4 times daily this wash really worked wonders . For ear infections please consider just buying what my ND suggested the Garlic and Mullein oil for ear infections it is gentle and easy to use find it at health section of the store.

    1. Wow – that’s quite a Neti pot concoction! :) It never occurred to me to add more to the water than the usual salt. Thanks for sharing Sophie!

      p.s: If anyone’s interested, I’d written a bit about Jala neti here.

  13. Hi, I have horrible had a horrible pain in both my ears that has been going on for a few days. I wanted to try a natural remedy before going to the doctor, so I tried a mix of warmed oil oil and garlic juice drops in my ears. That hasn’t helped, so I decide to try your garlic remedy instead. I’m wondering how many days in the evening should I do this?

    1. Hi Charlotte

      You should try it for a few nights at least (daytime too if you’re able). I don’t know if the oil you’ve put in your ears before could interfere with the fumes working, though there’s no harm in trying. If it’s working, the pain should lessen.

  14. Hi, I’ve got a piece of garlic stuck in my ear. Lesson learned: do not try raw garlic without first wrapping in a gauze and leaving a tail to pull it out.

    Please advise. Can I leave it in there indefinitely? Or what are the risks? Will it eventually fall out on its own? Because I think I will have to go to ER to get it removed; my pcp said he couldn’t do it.

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