Earcheck: I'm Not A Hypochondriac. I'm A Mother.

My 9-month-old son Egan was just diagnosed with his fifth ear infection, so I know firsthand how frustrating it is to diagnose something you cannot see.

In our case, Egan is mostly happy, not feverish and not pulling on his ears when he has a raging infection. More than one doctor has said “Then why did you bring him in?” before they confirmed my layman’s diagnosis. Coincidentally, when I returned from the pediatrician this time, Earcheck ($55) was on my doorstep.

Earcheck uses sound waves to detect fluid buildup in the middle ear. Just stabilize the child and pull the ear up and back, stick in the earcheck (it’s shaped so you can’t put it in too far) and press its only button. While it’s scanning it emits a series of soft chirps, nothing loud enough to damage a child’s hearing, then after a couple of seconds it shows a clear rating of one (fluid unlikely) to five (consult a doctor).

Because I knew my son had a double ear infection on the day I was testing it, I knew for sure that this tool would be really useful. One ear ranked a four and the other a five and the results were consistent after several scans. (Be sure to follow the directions, though. If you don’t pull the ear it will give an inaccurate reading.)

Finally there’s a gadget that can support a mother’s intuition, however accurate that may be!

— Kristen

CBB Deal: Save 20% off your entire order at www.earcheck.com when you use coupon code ‘CBB20’. Expires April 15, 2009.

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