I have the first ear infection I've ever had and DAMN is it uncomfortable. Now I understand why babies cry so miserably when they get them (another good reason to breastfeed: breastfed babies are exponentially less likely to get ear infections and when they do get them, they are less severe and of shorter duration).

I went to the doctor this morning and then tried to go back to work but my ear hurt so much that the sounds of the police scanners and TVs and general cacophony of the newsroom made me feel slightly insane. I was already feeling a bit disoriented and off balance since I have not been able to hear fully out of my left ear for the past several days. This morning when I woke up, I couldn't hear anything.

I will appreciate my ears much more when I'm all well.


Anonymous said...

one of my children (the bottlefed one) never had an ear infection. actually she was rarely sick. now my second child, the breastfed one, had ear infections so bad they almost operated on him. go figure. personally I think it was Gods way of telling me that I had bigger fish to fry than worrying about how baby was fed.

katie allison granju said...

Gee, using your logic:

I rode around without a carseat as a baby and never died or was injured in a car accident.

Ergo, all that malarkey about use of carseats lowering babies' risk for being killed in car wrecks is meaningless.

Is that sort of what you are saying?

Your individual, anecdotal experience is irrelevant to the big picture issue here. Medical research is about epidemiological risk, not one baby's risk.

And I think it's sad that you believe God would send you a message by making a baby suffer through an illness.


Not a Statistician said...

Your argument is analogous to saying "I know a guy who smoked since he was 12 and lived to be 100. I may was well smoke."

I don't know the numbers on breastfeeding and earaches, but I suspect they aren't quite as convincing as the ones about smoking and cancer.

Just because life is a crap shoot doesn't mean that you shouldn't play the odds.

katie allison granju said...

I'm unclear what exactly the last poster is trying to say, but no need to argue about what the research says about breastfeeding and hos it lowers the risk for otitis media in children (or more accurately, how NOT breastfeeding raises the risk).

Here is a comprehensive list of cites:;115/2/496#R27

katie allison granju said...

And here is a rather good article on the topic, which, as it turns out, I wrote:

Anonymous said...

the other poster is saying that your analogy is similiar to the old granny that everyone knows who smoked like a chimney and sucked down a daily shot of Jack Daniels and still lived to a hundred. that the occasional rule breaker doesnt change the generalization. beyond that though,
what he is saying is that the research and causative factors are far more clearer with smoking than with breastfeeding. smoking is a lot more obviously cause and effect whereas breastfeeding it is highly debateable just exactly how you interpret the research. I might add there are a couple of studies that actually paint breastfeeding as the culprit (the one on allergies for instance and the one that said that boys breastfed for longer than a certain time had greater cardio risk as adults...I did wonder, in fairness, if the increased allergies among breastfed babies might be because people with a genetic tendency to allergy might breastfeed more frequently due to propoganda that they do so...ya always have to be aware, doing research, of anything that my enter in and skew results that is not really cause and effect) I have yet to hear of a study saying that smoking is beneficial (although there was one that said that PIPE opposed to cigarettes..have less strokes, cardio events etc than complete guess is its a stress reduction wasnt a huge number so I would hardly go out and start smoking a pipe for health reasons but it makes pipe smokers feel better)
finally if you are so aware of these statistics and pointing out how dare anyone take a chance..why the hell are you letting your daughter participate in one of the most dangerous sports out there? I would bet that a lot more kids are injured in horse accidents than have health issues from infant formula in this country (not counting those whose health issues are because the parents were too clueless to realize you need to use clean water to make the formula or that sort of thing...I just love how breastfeeding advocates talk about how many kids die of formula when what they are referring to is babies in third world countries raised in primitive conditions that are not conducive to preparing and storing the stuff..and they think the general public is too stupid to realize that you cant apply the same ideas under vastly different living conditions)

Miriam said...

Well we do get testy during the summer humidity don't we? I too bottle fed my babies. Neither of them EVER had an ear infection. I on the other hand have had chronic ear infections all of my life, including a really bad case of "swimmer's ear" at age 39. I really don't think in my case not being breast fed had anything to do with it. I also think that medical research can be manipulated, as Katie herself would probably agree. It really bothers me that some people who were what I call "breastfeeding police" tried to make me feel ashamed or like I was a bad mother because I chose to bottle feed. I have many friends who breastfed; some of them successfully and some of them not so successfully. I think it is time for women to stop demanding one person's way is better than another's way. As far as medical research goes, Mobic, Fen Fen...the list goes on. I don't think medicine is an exact science. Why don't we as women and mothers stand up for each other and say good for you for being a great parent!

As far as the danger of Horse related sports...I too have two daughters who ride. One of them can ride any bucking bronc around.That is because she has a horse who was once a problem. Her trainer taught her how to safely stop a bucking horse. Both always wearing their safety helmets and boots, just as football players, soccer players etc do. Any sport is potentially dangerous. Are we as parents to deny their talents and passions out of our own fear? Let's be proud of our children and support them and SHAME ON THE ADULT WHO WANTS TO PICK ON A LITTLE KID!

mamalife said...

I've had a couple of ear infections as an adult and they can be TERRIBLY painful - hope you feel better soon!

spinetingler said...

I had my first one as an adult last May and it was easily the most painful thing I've ever suffered besides major surgery.

I ended up on Percocet.

Anonymous said...

thank you Miriam. I am with you. I was not picking about sports..I actually used to ride, which is how I know the risks. I am merely pointing out that it is rather a contradiction to have tunnel vision about one issue while having a rather contradictory idea on another issue. however as I go along I realize that people have an amazing tendency to be inconsistant in their logic as it suits them.
I am with you about the medical research. latest example vitamin E. for years it was like a miracle drug, now they are saying oops, it can actually be bad for you. not to mention the whole low carb or low fat business. I used to do research in college at the undergrad level, both biology and psychology, so i know what goes into an experiment and how careful you have to be. some things, smoking for example, have such high correlations that there is really no question. but when you get into lower numbers and contradictory studies(and with a lot of the "breastfeeding prevents X, Y or Z" studies "lactivists" of course quote the one that supports their viewpoint and leave out the fact that a couple of other studies were less conclusive) a lot of it becomes about what someone is trying to prove. and even with direct correlations, it does not prove cause and effect. our statistics profs favorite example was an increase in lung cancer with an increase in alcohol consumption is noted. but the alchohol does not cause lung cancer, instead a third factor, the fact that poeple tend to smoke more as they drink more, accounts for the rise. but to look at simple correlation and try to prove cause and effect from that could come to a very erroneous conclusion.

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