We all love to stay active and energised. And we prefer to be so by being engaged in indoor or outdoor activities. Most of us like to play games of any kind like football, basketball, and cricket or just do some physical exercises which will burn our extra calories and give us a needed feeling of wellbeing. Most of us are particularly interested in water games and sports. Some children even take guided training in water-based activities like swimming, water dancing, boating, under water exercises or just like to go down under water to enjoy and see a beautiful world full with fishes, various kinds of flora and fauna and to have a fun-filled water adventure.
Everything said, though it’ really fun to go swimming or do water exercises but it sometimes happens that when we come out of water some of it enters our ears which really gives us another bother issue to look into. Because it gives us hearing issues, pain and sometimes severe problems of infections too. Water may enter our ears in not one but many ways. We may accidentally pour water over ears while bathing or someone may pour it on you as a prank. If we wear ear buds for long, then also sweat gets trapped inside and cause discomfort. If we don’t take care of this situation soon we may end up with an infection called Otitis Externa or Swimmer’s ear. If we have water in ear canals the bacteria present in the lining of ears starts to act and multiply fast coming in contact with water causing infections of many kinds. Water in ears makes it prone to infections because water damages the skin lining the ear canal because of which fungal infections can start.
HOW DOES WATER ENTER THE EARS
In usual cases, water may enter the ears because of angular imbalance but because of a structural advantage it comes out pretty easily too. But the problem arises when there is a large amount of wax inside ears. Wax may have a protective function generally but if present in large amounts it traps water that enters ears blocking it’s drainage. It leads to pain and an uncomfortable feeling inside the ears.
VISIBLE SYMPTOMS OF WATER IN EARS
1. An uncomfortable and blocked feeling inside the ears.
2. A feeling of heaviness inside the affected ear.
4. Pain and continuous itching in the ears.
5. Infection in the ear
6. Tickling sensation with not being able to hear properly.
HOW TO PREVENT WATER GETTING INTO EARS
To prevent water from entering into ears we can follow these steps:-
- Tilt the head of the child on the blocked side of the ear. Jump standing on your place and shake the ear lobe from side to side. Do so for five to ten minutes. The water from ears will drain away.
- Tilt your head sideways and rest your ear on your palm sealing it. Push your hand back and forth in a rapid motion.
- Turn your blow dryer adjusting it to the lowest intensity. Hold it about a foot away from your ear and move it back and forth in a slow motion so that the warm air blows into the ears.
- Alcohol can help evaporate water from ears. It also prohibits the growth of bacteria helping to prevent infection. And vinegar can help to remove earwax. So using alcohol and vinegar ear drops can be quite helpful. Combine equal parts of alcohol and vinegar to make eardrops. Apply three or four drops of this mixture in your ears. Rub the outside of the ear gently. After waiting for forty seconds tilt your head sideways to let the solution drain.
- Using hydrogen peroxide eardrops can also help clear earwax.
- Olive oil can help prevent infection and remove water from ears. Warm some olive oil in a bowl. Using a clean dropper put a few drops of this oil into the affected ear. Lie on the other side for fifteen minutes and then tilt the ear downwards.
- Lie on the normal side of the ear; fill the affected ear with water. Wait for ten seconds and then turn over with the affected ear facing down. The water in ears will drain out.
- 8. A number of eardrops are available in the market. Most of them are alcohol based and can help reduce water in the outer ear canal, kill bacteria and remove wax.
PREVENTION FROM WATER GOING INTO EARS
If your child is fond of swimming, follow these steps to avoid water going inside the ears:-
1. The child should not go to swim with a cold. If the child goes to swim with a cold and takes a dive in a pool there is a sudden increase in ear pressure. This ear pressure is released through the canal which connects the ear and the nose. And this can happen only if the nose is free and open. If the nose is blocked due to cold this pressure cannot be released. This rising pressure can cause the ear drum to burst.
2. If your child is complaining of frequent ear aches then a medical examination of ears must be done by an ENT surgeon and have the wax removed as soon as it can be.
THINGS NOT TO DO WHEN WATER ENTERS INTO EARS
If you cannot think of any remedy or good idea to remove water from ears do not use ear swabs, fingers or any pointed object to poke inside ears. Because doing so would make the ear more susceptible to getting bacteria into the area, will push more water deeper into the ears, will injure ear canals and may puncture the ear drums.
WHEN TO CONSULT A DOCTOR
Generally water trapped in the ears is not a big issue because just as it enters the ears in the same way it drains out too. But if on examination we find that ear has become inflamed or swollen then we need to know that we may have got an infection. It needs to be treated on time otherwise it may lead to hearing loss or other severe complications like cartilage or bone damage.