Did you know that a swimmer’s ear infection can occur anytime of the year, not only in the summer? An outer ear infection is sometimes called swimmer’s ear. It often starts as a result of water remaining in your ear after swimming or bathing. Ear canal infections are most commonly treated during the summer months when more time is spent in the water. Water in the ear canals can cause excessive moisture and lead to ear pain, drainage, and itching at any time during the year. In other words, chronic ear canal inflammation is commonly known as swimmer’s ear or otitis externa.
Water in the ear canals can irritate the skin, make the skin dry and cracked leading to pain, swelling and infection. After that, moist ear canal skin can lead to skin break-down, resulting in tiny openings in the skin where infection can start.
Keeping your ear canals dry is always our go to advice! After showering, shampooing hair or swimming, always make sure to dry your ear with a towel and blow dry hair to evaporate the water.
Children with eczema on other parts of their body or those with allergies are particularly prone to ear canal inflammation.
Treating Otitis externa (Swimmer’s ear)
Armour Blower with Boric Acid Capsules: An old fashioned treatment that really works!
One of our many treatment options for ear canal infections such as swimmer’s ear is boric acid powder. This powder will change the ear canal pH and help heal the canal. A puffer device, called an Armour Blower, will help get this medication into your child’s ear. This is available with prescription through a pharmacy. For the first application, we will show you proper use in the office. A few simple puffs of the blower daily will deliver the medicated powder into the ear and help the canal heal. In addition, a demonstrational video is found below.
Ear infections should be treated by a doctor. If not, the ear pain will get worse and the infection may spread. At home, acetaminophen or ibuprofen may ease discomfort.
Follow the health care provider’s instructions for using ear drops and oral antibiotics, if they are prescribed. It’s important to keep water out of your child’s ear during the entire course of treatment. You can use a cotton ball as an earplug to protect your child’s ear from water during showering or bathing.
There are a variety of different treatment options available for outer ear infections such as swimmer’s ear, from ear drops, ointments, or even a powder for the ears! Call us today at 716-362-9730 for an appointment to help diagnose the source of your child’s ear pain and find the best treatment plan! More information on our hearing services is listed on the hearing services section of our website.
Rest assured, we are following all current Covid-19 prevention protocols in our exam rooms and hearing booths including temperature monitoring, room cleaning and disinfecting, social distancing and thorough cleaning of all hearing test equipment.