Garlic Oil For Ear Infections: Why You Should Make Your Own

Garlic Oil

Photo credit: rgbstock.com

Garlic oil for ear infections is very simple to make. The best recipe to use is simply 2-3 cloves of garlic crushed and mixed with 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. This mixture will be left to steep for 30 minutes, then strained. Once strained, put a drop or two in each ear every hour for a few days. Most people who have used this remedy have had great results, often the pain lets up immediately. It is best to make a new mixture every 24 hours, to preserve the benefits of the garlic and olive oil and ensure the mixture doesn’t get contaminated by bad bacteria. There are several concoctions available ready-made at the store, some with additional herbs like mullein.

So… Why Should You Make Your Own?
When you make your own garlic oil, you can ensure that it is never heated. You can also use quality ingredients of your choosing and opt for organic garlic and a reputable brand of extra virgin olive oil. In case you didn’t know, there have been reports that some olive oils are tainted with fake fats that may be rancid and definitely not good for health!

The Benefits of Raw Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Olive oil contains fragile polyphenols, which are antioxidants that protect us from cell damage and help control inflammation. When the oil is heated, these polyphenols are greatly reduced, or even eliminated. Olive oil has antibacterial and antiviral properties when raw that directly helps to attack an ear infection, which can help avoid antibiotic use and the gut damage that follows. In addition to these benefits, olive oil lowers the risk of cancer, arthritis, diabetes, depression and other diseases. It also helps to lower blood pressure.

The Benefits of Raw Garlic
Garlic shares many of the benefits that olive oil offers, including being full of antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiviral, and protecting against cancer. This member of the allium family is high in sulfur compounds which aid the body in detoxification. It even helps our bodies to avoid forming carcinogens from overcooked meat. It helps with iron absorption and is a good source of Vitamin C, manganese, selenium, and other important vitamins and minerals. These are only some of the wonderful benefits that garlic has to offer, and unfortunately many of them are quickly destroyed by heat. For this reason it is often recommended to add garlic when the dish is done, or very close to being done, if you want to take advantage of all the health benefits it has to offer.

Raw, Garlic-Infused Olive Oil Works Miracles
When combined together and kept in their raw state, garlic and extra virgin olive oil offer the best of both worlds. Additional herbs can be steeped with the mixture. I have many friends who have had success with this remedy, including my neighbor who was a skeptic. Making a new solution daily is advised because after a period of time, garlic submerged in olive oil may encourage botulism to grow. Administering frequently ensures that the properties of the oil are available to continue healing the infection at all times. Many people get away with dosing every 4-6 hours, though.

A Note On Ear Infections
Recurring ear infections should not be a normal part of childhood! It often signifies that something is wrong. Dietary intervention may be necessary, often just eliminating dairy makes a huge difference.

Have you ever used garlic oil for an ear infection? If you have, I’d love to know the results and whether or not you made your own/used heat!

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38 comments

  1. jenna d says:

    Hello, when you say left to steep for 30 minutes you mean just to let it sit and absorb with no heat. Sorry for the most likely stupid question, but the only reference I know to steep is when I make tea and thats after ive heated the water and added tea….just wanting to clarify. My daughter has had 2 ear infections back to back and seems to be getting it again, and after 2 rounds of antibiotics im not doing a third.

      • jenna d says:

        Thank you, I very much appreciate your help. I made the oil and put some in her ears, and she started crying. It wouldnt be hurting her would it? Im thinking just because it felt weird…

        • Jo says:

          It may have been too cold? Would depend on the temp in your home. You could put the container in warm water (similar to how you’d warm up breast milk if you’re familiar with that) first and try it that way.

    • Carmen says:

      I remember mom frniyg cauliflower and I have had it only once since leaving home 60 years ago.That was one day when my wife was gone, I chopped up a whole head and deep fried it, eating it all alone with no sauce, just salt. The first batch came out almost burnt, oil was too hot. The second batch came out better but it is hard to cook and eat at the same time. Finally got it right but you fill up fast eating a whole head by yourself! So I cleaned up the oil spatter from the stove top, figuring I had pretty well got my wish for eating fried cauliflower again. Then my wife came home and asked what happened here . Apparently she can see a microscopic trace of cooking oil from 10 feet away. Hope you all had a good 4th, wife’s family had a successful wedding yesterday.Jerry

    • Jo says:

      Oh, and it could have also been the new sensation of having something put into her ear, of course. I am not sure if it would benefit ear infections internally. =/

    • Hasan says:

      As a fan of Aioli, my quick go-to condiment, I’m naltualry drawn to this. For those that are put off by the heat of the freshly chopped garlic, why not try substituting part (or all) of it for roasted garlic to bring out some of the sweet/nutty character? I do this with Aioli all the time. Looking forward to the kebabs

  2. Kayla says:

    Hey there! I’ve got it steeping right now!
    Thank you so much. We live out of town and I would have had to order this online and wait- I have all of these ingredients at home and would much rather make it myself. I hope this works :-)

    My Mother in Law heard I was trying this and said:
    “It is what my Mom called sweet oil. She would heat a little in a teaspoon put it in our ear then put a cotton ball in the ear. She would have us lay on a heating pad with the bad ear on the pad. Next moring remove cotton ball and all the yucky stuff would be in the cotton ball.”

      • Oliwia says:

        I had Toum for the first time about 25 years ago in a Lebanese restaurant in St. Paul, MN. I would also pucsrahe small containers of Toum from a small Mexican-Lebanese grocery store several miles from the restaurant. I got hooked and turned into a Toum junkie. Unfortunately, my wife was in the early stages of her first pregnancy and she couldn’t stand to be within 25 feet of me after I had been eating the stuff or she’d experience severe morning sickness regardless of the time of day. We eventually moved too far away to get back to either establishment on a regular basis, which probably saved our marriage and allowed for additional children. I’ve found recipes for Toum previously and I succeeded in making it once or twice in a blender. More recent attempts to make it, however, have been dismal failures. I had Toum again in November at a South Bend, Indiana restaurant following a Notre Dame football game. It was as good as I remembered it and it rekindled my determination to make it at home. I tried my old method again with the same disappointing results. I found your recipe on this site and gave it a whirl. Wonderful! I think you touched upon a very important factor in your blog for those struggling with making Toum: Size matters. In my failed efforts I had tried to make proportionately smaller batches and ended up with lumpy, separated liquid. Larger amounts made in a food processor is the key to success. I, along with my menopausal wife and grown children, thank you!

      • Endang says:

        My Dad loved fresh garlic in his satlaa (sp?) and my Mom always made him go outside on the back porch to peel it and smash it with a mortar and pestle. About 20 years ago, Gilroy CA (the center of the garlic universe) held a Garlic Festival to which we went a few years in a row such a novelty for a festival and garlic became overdone when I tasted Garlic Ice Cream, I turned back now I don’t even put it in hummus.

  3. Anne says:

    Thanks for clear, easy directions! I have a few drops in my ear as I type. When my baby wakes, I will put some in his ears. Darn travel & cold weather made us all sick:(

      • Zema says:

        Ahlla, Mareen,love your writting and your Toum ricepe. My Mum is a great cook and she has a wonderful twist on making Toum. This involves freezing the whole garlic bulb for at least two days or more. When ready to make Toum quickly peel each clove , leave the centre sprout in and just follow your ricepe. Freezing takes the hotness out the garlic and also helps those that have problems with garlic repeating on them. Do not let the garlic defrost for longer than 20mins. Please let me know if anyone is sucessful with this method. Have fun.

  4. Kayla says:

    I’m coming back to tell you that this REALLY WORKED. My son had been having lots of ear infections, some rupturing. I tried this and it took a couple days of applying it hourly throughout the day, but his EI went away and ear ache went away! THANKS!

    • Souraya says:

      Maureen, Jim made this gorgeous item the day after your post, and we have been dhtigeling in it ever since. We’ve used it as a condiment for roast chicken and grilled fish, dipped steamed green beans and potato chips (!) in it, tossed it with warm red potatoes for a salad and, just now, with pasta, julienned basil and pine nuts for a deconstructed pesto. Nell spent the morning scouring the fridge for things I can put the garlic sauce on. In other words, we are addicted!!

    • Stephanie says:

      Hi Hannah – lol. Everyone has different patelas but thanks for your vote of confidence!Hi Joey – The falafel photos barely do their taste justice. Hope you get her sometime!Hi Helen – I haven’t been to Hijazi’s but thanks for letting me know about them. I do like delicious and cheap :)Hi Bobby’s Girl – Thanks for the Melbourne recommendations. Have heard about a few good eats on Sydney Road. Must be something about the name. lolHi Anon – I have been to in Granville. Their chicken is pretty tasty! Love the charcoal flavour!Hi Gab* – No Lebanese in Adelaide? The travesty!Hi Karen – lol. No problem. Better late than never, and I get the feeling you are really making up for lost time!Hi ATV – Haven’t been to Habibs yet, but have heard quite a few people rave on about them. Might have to do a comparison!Hi Billy – The desserts are from Rabieh but yes, the toum at Jasmin is deliriously good.Hi Suzanne – The food is great and so cheap too!Hi Claire – I do love the turnover of patrons too. You never have to wait long. Glad it’s such a hit with your family.Hi Jason – Oh no there’s definitely an art to a good falafel! Glad to hear you are a fan as well.Hi divemummy – Hmmm will have to check out Hijazi’s soon! Thanks for letting me know.Hi Gummi Baby – It’s not too far – the falafel will make any journey worth it!Hi Jacq – lol. I’m easily influenced by food cravings too!Hi Diva – The Lebanese bread is really soft. Hope you managed to satiate your cravings!Hi Devi – Aww glad to hear that you enjoyed Jasmin. The food is so delicious and I’m always incredulous at the speed and low cost of it all.Hi Katie – You’re right – I hadn’t really thought about how colourful the food is!Hi Sydneyguyrojoe – Argh, how did that typo get through! Thanks for letting me know – corrected now. The trivia on the similar names is fascinating too – thanks for letting me know!

  5. Ashley says:

    I’m trying this now as I type. For inner ear inflammation? I read garlic oil was good for it………. I put two cloves in an 1/4 cup of oil and heated it and let it sit……. You think it will help?

    • Necla says:

      I mentioned borefe that a Lebanese restaurant owner in Wisconsin made hummus for us once and he started by filling the food processor bowl (typical large processor) with garlic, liquifying it and then adding some chic peas and taheni. It was so strong with garlic that it actually burned your mouth a bit, like with a mild pepper, didn’t know garlic would do that. He also made a more mild batch, but it too was a bit much! So march forward with courage, how bad can a cup of garlic be?

  6. Denise says:

    How often do you apply it at night, still hourly?!? If not hourly, how often? And do you have to use the cotton ball for it to work? Not sure my 2.5 year old and 9 month old will keep it there. They both have ear infections. :( I’m very tempted to use the antibiotic bc my little one is in pain and can’t sleep. But I know the benefits of going natural!

    • Jo says:

      Sorry for the late response. If you or baby wakes in the night you can reapply but otherwise I’d just start it up again once awake. Many people report relief from the pain from the 1st or 2nd dose. Hope your babies are better by now!

  7. Brenda Peters says:

    My grandson is one year old and has a ear infection is he too young for this ? TIA
    My hearing has been muffled for the last 9 months and the ENT specialist says nothing’s wrong , if I am lying down my hearing is much better , I am wondering if this might help as I have tried acupuncture. Chiropractic adjustments, lymphatic drainage and ear candling to no avail . I have to see the ENT again in 10 days as this is frustrating me . Could this garlic oil , or garlic/ coconut oil help my ears ?? TIA

    • Jo says:

      Your grandson is not too young. I’m not sure what’s going on with your ears but it wouldn’t hurt to try the garlic oil–if it is an infection causing it, it will help. Hope you’re both better!

  8. Crista says:

    What if all you have is regularl canola oil? Is it still beneficial for the pain? My son suffers from ear problems, he has had tubes put in twice, I’m trying to find something to ease the pain for him.

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