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Having ear infections / Illness every month & I'm on the firing line because of it...what to do?

I am hard of hearing and wear hearing aids in both ears.

I used to have a few grommits placed in my ears when I was a child and had a few years without them. I then had them put back in again for 2 years befor taking them out and having a T-Bar grommit in my left ear around 4 years ago now. Due to this I may have a hole in my ear canel.

Anyway,

I started my job in November and since January, each month I've been getting illnesses. I've had 1 week off with tonsillitis and have had 5/6 weeks off due to bad ear infections, my last one was last week where I had both an inner & outer ear infection which caused me to be in agony to the point where I couldn't eat or sleep for 3 days and was given a cocktail of different medications to deal with this .

The ear pain is coming back again a week after but the pain meds i've got are holding it back however this morning , there was a bit of gunk in my ear.

I've had a meeting with my work and they are not happy at all.

They have 'considered my disability' but is still giving me the last chance to improve my health or my employment with them will be reconsidered...it doesn't look good. I work in a nursery looking after 2-4 year olds.

I take Vitamin D tablets, Iron & Vitamin C tablets as well as Omega 3 tablets ,

I eat fairly healthy as my fiance cooks from fresh produce alot and I don't smoke or take any other drugs apart from normal pain meds.

I asked my doctors why i get so ill and they said some people have a weak immune system even when prevention methods like the above are put into place.

Work isn't happy and even though i've said i keep asking why or to look into it, my work said i'm not trying to give myself better health and that it's unacceptable.

What can I do to improve my health?

I've asked for Ears,Nose, Throat referral but symptoms improves before the time they said (if it's still bad in 2 weeks we'll see what the next steps are etc)

I just feel so stuck as there isn't much i can do about my hearing / ear infections...

they think i can just control it as and when i want.

2 Replies
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Hi VirtualProgress

I've just come on to this forum (usually on another forum here) and seen your post. I hope you don't mind me posting to you.

Your situation certainly does sound very difficult and, to me, it sounds as if your 'boss' is being rather unfair. I hope this situation has improved for you now, at least a bit.

I can't advise you re what to do but I do wonder if 'discrimination' could be considered.

However, what sprung to my mind, when reading your post, is that you started in November at a nursery with young children and started getting unwell soon after. I would think this could well be due to being exposed to the children's bugs and viruses which, as you havent' been in contact with previously, you immune system hasn't caught up with. I believe this can happen with anyone, with or without ear issues, and the immune system will learn to deal with these 'new' bugs.

I've been in a similar situation, although not threatened re loosing my job, whereby I changed from working on the wards (hospital - nursing) to Plaster Room and, of course, dealing with lots of children of all ages. Needless to say, they would pick up bugs at school, then, being generous, would happily, but unkowingly, share to anyone near enough to catch ... Yes, I had lots of throat infections, ear infections, lost my voice to the extent I couldn't even whisper (much to the delight of the two blokes I was working with ;) )

So, what I'm suggesting is that your boss should be more sympathetic and understanding as it's likely the environment you are in, ie boss's fault, not yours ;)

If you're still having problems, maybe go to Citizens Advice to see where you stand. It could well be considered to be 'bullying', perhaps!!!

Good luck

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Hia,

I used to work in a nursery and was constantly getting ill from the kids at first, so like JMN2017 I imagine this is what is causing your infections, and because you are already susceptible.

When it comes to being within the firing line it sounds to me like your boss is being unfair. You shouldn't be able to be fired for being ill, unless they can prove that it makes you unsuitable for your job. If you're in a union I would recommend speaking to them about it if not join one (I was in UNISON, and I know GMB will cover nursery employees). They can give you advice and can provide someone to sit in meetings with you.

As for visiting an ENT I'd try going back to your doctor and saying you want referring because your ear infections are recurring, rather than because you have one at the time

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