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Swimmers Ear

Swimming is a sport which is enjoyed year round. There are many complications a swimmer may encounter and should be aware of with this sport. One of the most common and painful conditions a swimmer can develop is external otitis or "swimmer's ear". External otitis is a bacterial inflammation of the ear canal. In swimmers, it is mainly caused by an increased amount of water, self-manipulation (using cotton swabs) and neglecting to adequately dry the canal area.

Symptoms:

  • Ear pain
  • Itching
  • Drainage
  • Hearing loss
  • Pain when earlobe pulled

Treatment:

  • Abstain from swimming
  • Analgesics prescribed by physician
  • Ear solution in combination with an antibacterial medication as prescribed by physician

Prevention:

  • Immediately remove trapped water by shaking head after swim.
  • Never use cotton swabs, ear plugs, or any other instrument which will breakdown tissue and create bacterial growth.