Mullein ear oil is a popular homeopathic remedy used to treat ear infections, ear aches, and swimmer’s ear. Some people believe that it is both more effective and gentler than other remedies, such as antibiotics. For hundreds of years, this ear oil has been used to reduce ear pain and treat infections of the middle ear. It is made from olive oil that is infused with flowers from the common plant mullein, also called Verbascum thapsus.
The common mullein is native to southern and central Europe as well as sections of Asia. It will grow in most temperate or mild climates, making it common in gardens across the United States and Western Europe. The flowers, which are are rose-shaped and yellow in color, are collected for a wide variety of medical purposes during the summer.
Many medical providers have become aware that the over-use of antibiotics may reduce their effectiveness. As a result, some providers are looking for good alternatives to antibiotics, such as mullein ear oil. These practitioners claim that the oil works as well as antibiotics, without becoming less effective.
Generally, to treat an ear ache, several droplets of warm mullein ear oil may be placed in the ear canal. Then, the ear may be covered with a warm cloth. Sometimes the oil can be combined with other oils, such as St. John’s wort. In that case, the ear canal should be stuffed with cotton balls. Many people find that the placement of a warm water bottle over the ear will keep the ear warm and help alleviate the symptoms of the ear ache as well.
The oil typically is applied to the ear canal and then massaged into the middle ear. Many practitioners recommend that the oil be applied several times a day. Before using this product, however, it is important to be certain that the ear drum is not punctured or perforated.
Although it is easiest to purchase mullein ear oil from a homeopathic pharmacy, it may also be made at home. Simply use a mortar to crush about 1 cup (229.92 g) of dried mullein flowers. Then, combine the flowers with 2 cups (500 ml) of olive oil. Two teaspoons (10 ml) of myrrh or benzoin tincture may be added to the mixture as well. The infused oil should be stored in a warm place and normally lasts about three weeks.