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Ear Infections, Antibiotics and the Gut

Joette Calabrese, HMC, PHom M

August 20th, 2014  |  12 Comments

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CroupBy now you probably know that I oppose the overuse of antibiotics practiced by conventional medicine. Through its focus on managing the symptoms of illness rather than uprooting the cause, modern medicine has created a state of depleted health for many.

Antibiotics suppress symptoms such as fever and ear infections but at a cost. Generally, they drive the pathology deeper into the body until it re-emerges later as a more serious problem. This is why one illness follows another shortly after the use of drugs to “control” the symptoms of the first.

And gastrointestinal problems such as food intolerance emerge shortly after rounds (sometimes only one) of antibiotics.

Let’s take the example of Sammy, a normal two-year-old. Sammy is not feeling well because he has an ear infection. His parents take him to the doctor where antibiotics are prescribed.

This isn’t new to Sammy’s family because only last fall the same symptoms were met with the same prescription.

After administering the antibiotic, the ear pain abates by the following night, and Sammy is okay again.

Or is he? Six weeks later, Sammy cries out in the night with ear pain and a fever. Considering this yet another isolated incident, his parents return to the doctor for the next antibiotic.

Again peace. At least for now.

Within three months, the family is revisited with an ear infection again.

This time, Sammy is put on a more powerful drug on a daily basis for a scheduled six months. His parents are relieved that this will be the end of ear pain and fevers because they believe the stronger antibiotic wouldn’t allow an infection to thrive.

Instead, the now sallow Sammy begins to have stomach pains and obstinate constipation accompanied by mild rectal bleeding, especially after certain foods.

Again, a trip is made to the doctor, this time with a subsequent stay in the hospital for invasive and scary tests.

This reveals nothing more than what the parents already suspect…the antibiotics are causing a new illness.

A stool softener and analgesic are prescribed, along with a muscle relaxant and a prescription laxative.

He remains on the antibiotic.

Sammy is now on five medications, each packing noteworthy side effects. His ear infections are likely not resolved. Why do we know this? Because a large percentage of childhood ear infections return repeatedly while under this sort of treatment.

Also, Sammy is no longer able to have a normal bowel movement without the aid of medications. In fact, an inflammation in the descending bowel has caused some bleeding.

This is an ideal site for an infection, which is exactly what happens to Sammy.

He develops a rectal fissure that subsequently becomes abscessed.

But how could this happen? Isn’t he on a daily antibiotic? The doctor explains that within short order antibiotics become nearly useless, and again a stronger product is required to keep the infection from mounting.

Sammy’s life becomes a series of demoralizing medical appointments, scary invasive tests, pain and anxiety. There is little joy for Sammy and his parents.

They have lost quality of life.

Now, on the other hand, consider the case of Constance.

Constance is in her bed when she’s awakened by fever and sharp pain in her right ear accompanied by frightening dreams. Her mother comes to her with her homeopathic remedy kit.

She has been working with a professional homeopath for her family’s ills for years. She is also prepared because she recently completed a course on homeopathy and common family illnesses.

It’s empowering to become adept at discerning what signs and symptoms are available to help choose the correct remedy.

While Constance’s father comforts the crying girl, her mother, with the aid of their well-worn and beloved homeopathy book, ascertains that Belladonna 30C, every few hours until the symptoms are improved is the best choice for Constance’s symptoms.

Her mom chooses this because of the severity of Constance’s ear pain and her fever of around 104°.

She administers the remedy two times within two hours, and Constance drops into peaceful sleep. In the morning, this spirited teen is back to her packed social life with no sign of illness. That afternoon, their healthy family heads for a trip to the shore.

Which lifestyle would you choose?

Homeopathy has been embraced by more than 500 million people throughout the world because it is gentle, powerful, elegantly simple and uncommonly inexpensive.

And as long as the correct remedy is chosen, it works.

But that has always been the challenging part.

For many years, as a classical homeopath, I searched for shortcuts, protocols and pathology-specific remedies that I could employ as well as teach families.

I knew that homeopaths in India had the lead on these methods.

In the past 10 years, I studied every homeopathy book I could find written by Indian homeopaths (I own 47 of them), most penned by MDs, and spent 5 years studying with homeopathic Indian doctors in New York and Toronto.

Little by little, I began piecing together and collecting methods simpler than those I had learned in classical homeopathy so that the method was as simple as naming the illness, and the remedy was already determined.

But it wasn’t until my fellowships at the Banerji Clinic in Calcutta in 2013 and again in 2014 that I learned and honed skills that are reproducible.

This is when I became an advocate for their relatively simple, straightforward homeopathy methods to treat acute as well as chronic conditions.

I have compiled this information in my course Good Gut, Bad Gut to help people stuck in the quagmire left by antibiotics and other drugs, particularly conditions that originate from the gastrointestinal tract.

More importantly, to be able to follow simple instructions for specific ills.

Should you be interested in getting a good idea of what you would learn in my course, feel free to click here.

And check out what other moms have said about learning what I have gathered over the years.

It is the perfect course for Sammy’s family. I hope they consider it.

Please understand that it’s ok if this is not of interest to you. In that case, simply use what I give you here.

It is practical information and you’re free to download and print all of my blog articles.

Particularly those I’ve published in the last 3 years because they emphasize what I learned in Calcutta.

Allow my blog articles to become your personal study in protocols for specific illnesses that will serve you and your family for years.

I seek to give as much as possible away at no cost.

So, take what I offer for free and run with it.

I’ve also compiled some links to articles specific to antibiotics and ear infections to further your study.

Now go forth and heal your family the genuine and elegant way!


It is no longer necessary to undertake years of classroom study and countless hours of clinical practice for you to master a health strategy that is both safe and effective in treating CHRONIC and ACUTE GUT ISSUES. I am swinging open the doors to reveal a proven system I have used in raising my kids … literally taking your hand in mine to show you my methods and answer your questions. Find out more about my most popular course: Good Gut, Bad Gut: A Homeopathic Strategy to Uproot Seemingly Unrelated Illness in Body and Mindhttp://courses.joettecalabrese.com/goodgutbadgut


http://www.jpeds.com/article/S0022-3476(03)00293-2/abstract http://www.jpeds.com/article/S0022-3476(94)70356-6/abstract http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/38/1/25.abstract?sid=1696f5ed-db0b-46c7-9ce5-22ff8eacd7c8 http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/114/5/1333.extract?sid=f7a3c316-08cb-4916-bb2c-224e6474f27a http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/96/4/712.abstract?sid=f7a3c316-08cb-4916-bb2c-224e6474f27a http://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/ear-infection/news/20060912/cutting-antibiotics-for-ear-infections http://www.bmj.com/content/318/7185/715.full


I am a homeopath with a worldwide practice working with families and individuals via Zoom. I'm also a teacher and most importantly, a mom who raised my now-adult children depending on homeopathy over the last 31 years. I lived decades of my life with food intolerances, allergies, and chemical sensitivities until I was cured with homeopathy, so I understand pain, anxiety, and suffering. You may feel that your issues are more severe or different than anyone else’s, but I have seen it all in my practice and in my work in India. My opinion is that nothing has come close to the reproducible, safe and effective results that my clients, students and I have achieved with homeopathy.

Call today and learn how homeopathy might just be the missing piece in your health strategy.

Joette is not a physician and the relationship between Joette and her clients is not of prescriber and patient, but as educator and client. It is fully the client's choice whether or not to take advantage of the information Joette presents. Homeopathy doesn't "treat" an illness; it addresses the entire person as a matter of wholeness that is an educational process, not a medical one. Joette believes that the advice and diagnosis of a physician is often in order.

We've provided links for your convenience but we do not receive any remuneration nor affiliation in payment from your purchase.

The Author disclaims all liability for any loss or risk, personal or otherwise incurred as a consequence of use of any material in this article. This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.


12 thoughts on “Ear Infections, Antibiotics and the Gut”

  1. Maria says:

    Thank you for this article Joette.
    My question is can we substitute Belladonna for another remedy?

    I was told that Belladonna should be carefully used in families where glaucoma exists. Belladonna might make narrow angle glaucoma worse. I have several relatives of mine suffering from Glaucoma (my mother and her siblings) and I honestly am afraid.

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      Yes, there are other remedies that can be used, and Belladonna is used only in specific situations anyway. It ought to be used only when there is very high fever such as 104 degrees plus or when there is severe pain. This is fairly unlikely in adults. Having said this, when a remedy is used correctly, the possibility of a problem is quite low. The warning you received is related to using the remedy too frequently and when unwarranted.

      Without knowing the particulars of the ear infection in question, I can say that Hepar sulph 30 is also a very good remedy for otitis media.

  2. carol says:

    I agree, homeopathy woks. b4 I knew about it I was bit by a tick & went the whole awful med route. when I got bit 3x by a spider this year & started with the same symptoms I looked I took ledum & felt better in a week & in 3 weeks fine versus months from the tick( at that time I found yl oils which did work). what could b taken when your husband has had a knee replacement & the dr has convinced him if he doesn’t take an antibiotic every time he goes to the dentist he could die within 24 hrs? all his life he never was sick & now this crazy thing is messing up his system but he doesn’t know what else to do.

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      I thought the American Dental Association had retracted that posture about 5 years ago! Without taking your husband’s case, I wouldn’t be able to offer specific information, but there are ways to use homeopathic remedies around surgery that have been effective in warding off infections.

  3. Megan says:

    Thank you so much for this valuable free information and for sharing your passion. I am at the tail end of a Masters degree in Holistic Nutrition and have three teen boys and a wonderful husband whom I have been able to keep out of the doctors offices for the past 15 years. It is through homeopathy and nutrition that we have maintained strong health. Your information has strengthened my abilities to keep us not only healthy but comfortable when virus’ or bumps and bruises come our way. I look forward to taking one of your courses in 2015 when I complete my masters degree!!

  4. Renee says:

    Thank you for this article. I can definitely see the difference between my childhood and my kid’s just like you illustrate here. I was seemingly always on an antibiotic for ear infections, always having to go to one stronger, then bladder and kidney infections and on and on. After I turned 18 and took my health into my own hands, I haven’t used any antibiotics since, and also after dealing with the infections my way, now I have hardly ever had one since. My children, on the other hand, have never been treated with antibiotics (except for one instance where my son wrecked his bike into a rusty fire ring and got a deep cut. I allowed an antibiotic because I knew of no other way to prevent infection. You don’t happen to know of something better for that situation that you would be willing to share, would you?) Once, one of my children was diagnosed with an ear infection but I declined the antibiotic in spite of everyone’s warnings about how you HAVE to have an antibiotic for ear infections, but guess what? In 15 years, not another ear infection. Homeopathy 1, ear infection 0!Yea!! I actually have never taken any of my subsequent children to the Dr for complaints of an ear ache, and after dealing with them homeopathically, they have not had any recurrent ear infections as well.

  5. Gabreial W. says:

    How do you feel about giving an antibiotic so that you don’t spread pertussis to others? I know it doesn’t help for the person, but from spreading it. (per our doctor)

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      Doctors say the darndest things! Why not just keep the child home when he’s sick and protect him and everyone from the dangers of antibiotics? It might be time to find another pediatrician.

    2. Dee says:

      Gabreial and Joette – My 20 year old daughter came home (in June) from the doctor having already started taking the prescribed antibiotic for what I have since figured out was pertussis (She never challenges anything the doctor says…I’m trying to get her over this.). After about 3 weeks, the entire family got it (no one else is on an antibiotic); it seemed to be everywhere on the West Coast, but I believe we picked it up on a visit to the East Coast. The doctor did not say the word “pertussis” to her and did not say what the antibiotic would do FOR HER, but said something about preventing whatever she had from spreading. And..it is definitely called “The 100 Day Cough” for a reason! And, yes, we attempted to stay home to keep from spreading it.

      As an aside, all of my older 3 children, now young adults, had the DPT vaccination and boosters(?) when young…ALL of them have had pertussis sometime after age 15.

  6. Beth L. says:

    Thanks Joette, I’m passing this along to my daughter, who hasn’t had to make this decision yet, but has several friends whose children have been on antibiotics several times. She’s pretty open to homeopathy. I’m hoping she gets brave and shares with them!

  7. Cass says:

    Joette, my 7 month old was diagnosed with an ear infection today, with fevers of 102, what would you recommend I give him, and how often!?

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      I don’t take personal cases on this forum, but if you key in the words “ear infection” or “otitis media” and my name, you’ll find information that addresses this condition.

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