What Are the Symptoms of Swimmer's Ear?

Medically Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson, MD on March 19, 2024
1 min read

Whether you got your swimmer's ear after a dunk in the pool or because an infection set in while you were on dry land, the symptoms are the same. You may notice things like:

  • Itchy feeling inside your ear
  • Pain in the ear, which can be severe
  • Your ear hurts when you move your head or gently pull on your earlobe
  • Tender inside your ear
  • Fluid drains out of the ear
  • A bad-smelling, yellowish discharge from the ear
  • You don't hear as well (things sound muffled)

Always check with your doctor if you see any signs of an ear infection. Also, call him if you feel dizzy or have ringing in your ears, which means you may have a more serious problem that needs to get checked out by a doctor.

Also, call your doctor if you have:

Severe pain. Your doctor can suggest medicine that can give you relief.

Rash on your scalp or near your ear. You may have seborrheic dermatitis or herpes zoster (shingles). Your doctor can recommend treatment.