How to Remove Water from Ear

Water in the ear hurts and can lead to swimmers ear so it must be addressed quickly. It can occur at any time when water enters the ear canal. Once swimmers ear begins, a feeling of fullness in the water logged ear quickly progresses to itch, pain, and swelling. Ear drainage often occurs as well. Besides the discomfort and decreased hearing that can occur, water trapped in ear can cause other complications. Even apparently clear pool or sea water contains pollutants and harmful bacteria.

To keep your ears dry and free from trapped water:

• Dry your ears using a soft towel
• Gently shake your head side to side
• Tilt your head to each side with your ear facing down to allow water to escape
• Pull your earlobe in different directions while your ear is faced down
• Use a blow-dryer on its lowest setting (hold several inches (centimeters) from the ear)
• Consider the use of non-prescription drops that are indicated for drying

Why does water in your ear get trapped?

Water in ear after swimming, diving, surfing, or water sports is common, but it can happen even after simple activities like bathing or unwinding in a hot tub. The external ear canal makes it easy for water to enter. Once inside, water can only escape the same way it entered. In some cases, surface tension can cause this water to adhere firmly to the walls of the canal, thereby blocking it. How to drain water from the ear can be a concern as it can be difficult to remove. Whether the water comes out easily or not is dependent on a number of factors including the shape and width of each person’s ear canal.

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“Swimmers ear leads to about 2.4 million healthcare visits per year.”
cdc.gov