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Swimmer’s Ear Can be Averted

Hearing Blog

Swimmer’s Ear Can be Averted

Swimmer’s Ear Can be Averted

We refer to otitis externa (swimmer’s ear) when we are talking about some sort of infection of inflammation that affects the external portion of your ear canal. It is generally caused by direct contact with bacteria that exists in polluted water or by water-logging within the ears which harbors a moist environment for germs to replicate.

Public swimming pools are notorious for being polluted due to the large number of people that swim in them. Additionally, the chlorine that exists in the water of swimming pools actually kills the beneficial bacteria within your ears which make you more prone to infections resulting from harmful bacteria.

Although swimmer’s ear occurs quite often to (as the name suggests) swimmers, it can also happen to anyone that frequently comes in contact with a damp, wet environment (such as getting drenched in the rain). It can even be caused due to water getting inside your ears as a result of shampooing or taking baths or showers.

Swimmer’s ear can be rather painful and can cause itching, muffled hearing, as well as watery and yellow discharge from your ears. This condition can be quite uncomfortable but thankfully, it can also be prevented.

You can always take precautions prior to taking a dip in the pool the next time you’re on vacation. Make sure you thoroughly dry out your ears after taking a dip by tipping your head to one side and then the other, to let all the trapped water flow out. Even chemicals in hair products can cause swimmer’s ear, so make sure you plug your ears with cotton wool before using hair spray of hair gel. Always refrain from scratching your ears.

Always get your ears cleaned by a doctor and never try to clean your ears using q-tips since this can damage your hearing. If you feel your ears are too dry, you can spread a few drops of olive oil near the outer part of your ear to keep them moisturized. Swimmer’s ear should always be addressed by a doctor if you experience dizziness, extreme pain, or tinnitus (ringing/buzzing within the ears).

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