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What to do about dairy?

Last week I took Henry to the pediatrician. He was diagnosed with yet another ear infection. This is his fifth serious ear infection over the past seven months. The pediatrician gave us another round of antibiotics and was concerned enough to refer us to an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist for an evaluation. 
Henry's usually bubbly personality changes for the worse when he gets an ear infection.
When Henry is sick his usually bubbly and outgoing personality changes to clingy and cranky. He has trouble sleeping for more than a few hours at a time, without crying out for comfort. It's rough on the whole family when he does not sleep well because his ears are hurting. I am tired of giving Henry multiple antibiotics and I am worried that his hearing and speech development are being affected.

Ear infections are fairly common in young children and there is a lot of conflicting advice about how to treat them. The most common treatment for recurring ear infections are ear tubes to help drain the fluid that builds up in the middle ear. This is a relatively quick procedure, but it requires putting the child under general anesthesia. In about 25% of cases, the child needs a second set of tubes or even surgery to remove adenoids. 

While Daddy and I are not completely opposed to ear tubes if Henry truly needs them, we decided to research less invasive options as well. One piece of advice I received is to eliminate dairy from Henry's diet. Usually, I am skeptical of eliminating entire food groups from our diet, whether it's Atkins or Paleo. I am, however, willing to give this a trial run, if it means that we might be able to avoid ear tubes. We are going to try removing dairy from Henry's diet for a few months to see if it helps eliminate ear infections.
Could milk be contributing to Henry's frequent ear infections?
I'd love to hear any advice from readers. Have you dealt with a child who has experienced frequent ear infections? Have you tried modifying your family's diet in response?


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