Caution Ahead For Holiday Season Pool Ear Infection!

Otitis Externa (Outer Ear Infection / Swimmer's Ear)

Otitis Externa (Outer Ear Infection / Swimmer's Ear) Causes, Symptoms, Treatment and Precautions

Outer ear infections, which are increasing in hot and humid weather, can be more easily encountered with the contact of pool water.

So why does this infection occur?

Swimmer's ear or otitis externa is defined as the infection of the external ear canal. On the outer ear canal, there is a slight acidic content produced in the skin in the ear canal, as well as ear wax (serumen) containing fatty and antimicrobial agents.

Although the wrong application for cleaning purposes; The external auditory canal may occur due to the removal of this outbreak on the external auditory canal, traumatization of the skin of the outer auditory canal with cotton swabs, or prolonged contact with chlorine and alkaline substances which disrupt the structure of this antimicrobial barrier in the external ear canal. Generally, the water in the ponds is renewed by waiting for chlorine release and thus cleaning process is considered.

What are the initial symptoms of external ear infection?

In the early stages of the disease, the external auditory canal begins to swell and blush. The first finding in this period is the pain in the front of the ear canal. This finding is called "tragal tenderness" or "tragus sensitivity".

In the later period of the disease, the outer ear can swell and the inflammatory secretion is added. Symptoms include hearing loss, severe pain and swelling in the ear.

How is an external external ear  infection treated?

Local drop treatment was given firstly in the external ear canal inflammation. In addition, patients with severe swelling and discharge were treated with antibiotics and pain medication. Drip cortisone drops, antibiotic drops and alcohol-acid mixture drops are applied to the external ear canal. In addition, anti-bacterial and cortisone-containing drops are not used in patients who are considered to have fungal infection and drops or ointments containing fungicide are added to the treatment.

What are the precautions for external ear infection during vacation?

The following measures can help you enjoy the pool and the sea comfortably on holiday:

- Avoiding the insertion of cotton swabs into the ear weeks before the holiday period.

- After getting out of the pool, remove the chlorinated water from the ear with warm clean water, dry the water in the ear by holding the hair dryer in the ear for 2-3 minutes at low setting.

- In patients with a history of ear infection, lemon juice is applied to the ear after the above procedure (lemon juice can be poured into the teaspoon and a few drops can be dripped into the ear canal.

- Avoiding the use of earplugs or earplugs, which prevent outside air from breathing out of the pool.

In spite of all these measures, it may be appropriate to consult a ENT specialist if there is swelling, pain, contraction and discharge in the ear canal.

Murat Enoz, MD, Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgeon - ENT Doctor in Istanbul

Private Office:
Address: İncirli Cad. No:41, Kat:4 (Dilek Patisserie Building), Postal code: 34147, Bakırköy - İstanbul
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