How to Protect Ears While Swimming
If your ears have ever been filled with water after a dip in the ocean or pool, you know how frustrating it is when you’re still feeling the effects days later. This condition is the result of a bacterial infection called acute otitis externa (more commonly known as swimmer’s ear) and is often harmless, but it can have consequences for your hearing health if left untreated.
Otitis Externa, or swimmer’s ear, is an ear infection that affects the external ear and the outer ear canal. Symptoms of swimmer’s ear may include inflammation, itchiness in the ear and can pain when the ear is pulled or head is tilted and Leakage of infection by ear. The Disease Control Center indicates that the swimmer’s ear affects most children and young adults. Protect your family by practising active methods of protecting your ears while swimming.
Don’t swim in lakes, ponds, or rivers with lots of bacteria.
Avoid swimming in water bodies which can be contaminated. Check the regular cleaning and disinfection schedule while using the public pool; Check pollution level warning before planning to swim in local rivers, lakes or ponds.
Wear a swimming cap-
Wear swimming caps to keep your ears wet while swimming. It is necessary to keep the swimming cap completely covered with ears. To wear the swimming cap on your ear, place your hands inside the cap with fingers. Open the swimming cap. Bend forward and slide cap, slowly move your hands down because the cap slides on your head.
Once the swimming cap reaches your ears, then completely remove your hands and tilt the cap downwards until your ears are covered.
Wear swimmer’s earplugs-
Wear best waterproof earplugs for swimming for ear protection as an alternative to swimming caps to prevent water in the outer ear canal. Earplugs come in both disposable and reusable versions; Those who do not have latex allergy should consider using a reusable latex plug. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the application, keep in mind that do not push the plug very deeply. Using of earplug is the best way to protecting swimmer’s ear from water.
Dry your ears-
Keep your ears clean and dry, after swimming. After leaving the water, dry your ears well. Use a clean, soft towel to slowly pat your outer ear. To allow any water, tilt your head next to it which has got in the inner ear to get out. Repeat the process with the second ear. Another option is to use a Blow Dryer to dry completely. Set the blow dryer to its lowest setting. Keep the blower dryer about a foot away from your ear and then turn it on. Keep the blow dryer on your ear for about 30 seconds. Repeat for the second ear.
Use eardrops and home remedy-
Apply a preventive home remedy. The clinic advises to make a mixture which is a vinegar and one part is possible before and after rubbing alcohol, apply it on the ear to swim as swimmer’s ears to prevent bacteria. Tilt your head and use a drug draper to place a drop of the mixture into your ear. Hold for 10 seconds and then allow to remove the mixture. Repeat for the second ear.
Hydrogen peroxide to dry and clean ear canal-
If you have never used hydrogen peroxide before, then you are in for a treatment. Putting two drops in the canal (lay down on your site so that it falls completely downwards), you will soon hear a slight blur and crispy voice in your ears, which can happen wisely around the first time.
After about thirty seconds, tilt your head back so that the ear canal is down and let the solution go out. Place a towel on your pillow to catch the run-off.
Things You’ll Need
After drying your ears after swimming, tilt your head and pull your ears in different directions to help remove the water.
When to seek help
There are a few ways to tell if your inner ear may be infected because of trapped water. If your ear itches or hurts while chewing or when the earlobe is tugged, or if your hearing seems quieter or more muffled than usual because of a clogged sensation, you should seek help immediately. After checking your ear with an autoscope, your hearing caring professional might possibly prescribe an antibiotic and/or antifungal eardrops. Patients are usually advised to avoid swimming and flying to allow the ear to recover. If properly treated, swimmer’s ear should disappear in less than 14 days.
If you feel the sensation of water in your ears after a swim, there are a couple of things you can do to remove it:
Dry your outer ear with a soft towel without sticking it in the ear canal.
Lean your head to one side while pulling gently on your ear lobe to help the water flow out.
Place a few drops of rubbing alcohol, a solution of rubbing alcohol and vinegar, or hydrogen peroxide in the ear to help the water evaporate.
Chewing or yawning can help open the eustachian tubes and remove water from your ears.
Steam can also open the eustachian tubes. Place your face above a bowl of hot water with a towel over your head and inhale the steam for five to 10 minutes.
If the methods listed above don’t work, make an appointment to see a doctor to clean out your ears and prescribe any necessary treatment. If you are having difficulty hearing, hearing care professional can properly evaluate the cause, and if necessary recommend appropriate hearing aids.