In most cases, it is best to leave your
ears alone and let them maintain their own healthy, natural balance.
Do not scratch or clean
the inside of the ear with cotton swabs, bobby pins, your fingernail, or other
Removable earplugs may be used to keep moisture out of the
ear canal. But prolonged use of earplugs can make your ears hurt and itch, and
the earplugs can push earwax deeper into the canal. If this happens, your ears
are more likely to get infected.
Keep soap, bubble bath, and
shampoo out of the ear canal. Do not let a child lie down in the bathtub with
his or her ears underwater. These products can cause itching and irritation.
Keep your ears dry.
After swimming or showering, shake your head
to remove water from the ear canal.
Gently dry your ears with the
corner of a tissue or towel, or use a blow-dryer on its lowest setting. Hold
the dryer several inches (centimeters) from the ear.
Put a few
drops of rubbing alcohol or rubbing alcohol mixed with an equal amount of white
vinegar into the ear after swimming or showering.
outside of the ear to let the liquid enter the ear canal, then tilt your head
and let it drain out.
You can also use nonprescription drops, such
as Star-Otic or Swim-Ear, to prevent swimmer's ear.
If you use public swimming pools or hot tubs, ask
about the chlorine and pH testing of the pool. You are less likely to get
swimmer's ear from facilities that maintain good control of their pool testing
Do not swim in dirty water or locations that have
been closed because of pollution.
Follow any instructions your
doctor has given you to treat skin problems-such as
seborrhea-that may cause ear canal irritation.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
May 20, 2010
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this