Doctor Warns Swimmer's Ear Needs Treatment | NBC 6 South Florida

Doctor Warns Swimmer's Ear Needs Treatment

Swimmer’s ear is a very common problem

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    NEWSLETTERS

     A Broward doctor on Wednesday warned that swimmer’s ear doesn’t go away on it’s own

    Swimmer’s ear is a very common problem. According to the CDC, it leads to 2.4 million visits to the doctor every year.
    Ear nose and throat specialist Dr. Steven Singer is treating 16 year old Musfara Gilani for swimmer's ear. She says “there was a lot of water in my ear so it caused it to drain out.”  
    Swimming provides the perfect opportunity for water to get trapped inside the ear canal, and that’s when an infection can develop.
    If your child is spending a lot of time in the water this summer, Dr. Singer says there's a simple test parents can do if there's ear pain.
     “ If the mother or father can take the ear and just wiggle the ear, a swimmer’s ear will cause a significant amount of pain.”
    Swimming in untreated water like an ocean or lake is more likely to cause an infection. Clearing water out of the ear canal can prevent it. 
    While Dr. Singer uses a special instrument in his office at Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital,  he explains what to do at home.
     “You can put some rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball tilt the child’s head and slowly drip it in the ear, and then raise it up.”
    He also recommends blowing warm air from a hair dryer into your ear to get the water out.
    If ears become swollen, painful or have fluid draining - you need to get to a doctor for prescription drops.

    The CDC says more than half of these reported infections are in adults.