Protection from Swimmers Ear

Swimmers ear is one of the most common swimming complaints, but there are many solutions to this pain-in-the...ear.

To get the water out of your ears after swimming, try one of the following:

  • Shake your head or tilt your head and hop up and down.
  • Aim a hair dryer on a low setting toward your ear.
  • Lie on your side with the ear down so that the water will drain out.
  • Use eardrops to help dry the ear canal after swimming.
  • If you swim frequently, wear a swim cap or wet suit hood, especially for surfing or sailboarding. This can help prevent ear problems caused by exposure to wind and cold water.
  • Do not use wax-type earplugs. They may damage the ear canal and make infection more likely. Silicone earplugs provide better protection.
  • Do not use earplugs when snorkeling or during other underwater activities. They interfere with the ability to “clear the ears” during descent and ascent.
  • If you continue to experience discomfort, ask your doctor how to flush out your ears using warm water and an ear syringe.
  • Do not scratch or put anything into your ears.
  • Children who have ear tubes should follow the directions of their doctor.

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