When water gets trapped inside the ear, it can cause a condition called acute otitis externa. This painful ear condition often occurs in those who spend excess time in the water, which is why it is more commonly called “swimmer’s ear.” There are various causes of swimmer’s ear and treatment options to reduce irritation and risk of ear damage. At Julie Zweig, MD Integrative Sleep & ENT, we offer effective treatment for acute otitis externa at our facility in Alpharetta, GA.
Symptoms of Swimmer’s Ear
If you have acute otitis externa, you will have an irritated outer ear and ear canal due to the water trapped inside. Children and teenagers tend to be at higher risk for swimmer’s ear, but this condition can affect anyone. Some of the symptoms you may experience include:
- Itchy inner ears
- Pain inside the ear – this pain can spread to the neck and face
- Muffled hearing
- Fluid draining from the ear
- Ear redness or swelling
- A feeling of fullness inside the ear
Swimmer’s ear can cause ear infections that may cause damage to the inner ear or spread to other areas of the body. It is important to receive treatment for swimmer’s ear to avoid complications.
Causes of Swimmer’s Ear
When water is trapped inside the ear, it can allow bacteria to flourish and multiply. This can create a bacterial infection inside the ear that causes pain and irritation within the ear. Exposure to water during swimming, showering or bathing can result in an infection when the moisture is trapped inside. Some factors that can contribute to ear infections and swimmer’s ear include:
- Contact with bacteria-contaminated water
- Chemicals entering the ear (hairspray, hair dye, cosmetics)
- Skin damage inside the ear
- Skin conditions such as eczema inside the ear
If you have symptoms of swimmer’s ear, get relief and reduce risks of ear damage with a call to Julie Zweig, MD Integrative Sleep & ENT, and schedule an appointment to provide diagnosis and treatment for relief. Contact our clinic in Alpharetta, GA, to book your visit or schedule your appointment online.