Swimmer’s ears, as the name suggests, is an infection of the ear. The external ears as well as the ear canal are affected with the infection. The medical term for the condition is otitis externa. The main reason for infection is over-exposure to water. Professional swimmer’s are highly likely to get infected with the condition, hence the name.
When ear is exposed to water for more than a couple of hours at a stretch, the moisture seeps into the water-resistant film of the skin turning the skin mushy and wrinkled. Into this skin come crawling the water based bacteria and fungi resulting in ear infection. Swimmer’s ears is a non-life threatening condition though it can be painful. It can be easily treated at home but you must visit a doctor if the pain becomes unbearable.
Home Remedies For Swimmer’s Ears
The first thing to do if you suffer from swimmer’s ears is to drain the excess water out from the ear canal. Removing moisture from the ear canal can greatly reduce the pain associated with the infection.
Take medicated cotton and dip it in alcohol. Rub the alcohol dipped cotton into the ear. Alcohol is effective in not only killing the infection causing bacteria but it also helps evaporate the water present in the canal. In fact, professional and regular swimmers should make it a habit to clean their ears with alcohol in order to avoid the infection.
White vinegar is also an effective remedy in the treatment of swimmer’s ears. Put 3-4 drops of white vinegar in one ear and tilt your head to the opposite side of the ear. Stay in this position for five minutes at least. Now tilt your head to the same side as the treated ear.
You will feel the water mixed with white vinegar seeping out of your ear. Repeat the treatment with the other ear as well. This treatment should be done at least three times a day for four days. The acetic acid of white vinegar will also effectively kill the infectious bacteria.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar also works the same way as does white vinegar. Treat your ears with apple cider vinegar the way it is mentioned with white vinegar.
However, dilute the apple cider vinegar with same quantity of water or alcohol before pouring it into the ears. The treatment, if done regularly, also works as a preventive measure against developing swimmer’s ears.
Take 20 ml of mustard oil and heat it. Pour a few drops of warm oil into your ears. You will feel the water drain out of your ear along with mustard oil within a few minutes.
Hair dryers also work wonders in removing the extra water from the ears. Set your hair dryer at high and tilt your head to one side. Place the dryer a few inches away from your ears so that you don’t burn the skin.
If you feel the burning or find your skin turning red then move the dryer a couple of inches away from your ears. The warm air from the hair dryer will evaporate the water molecules that are present in the ears.