What is Swimmer’s Ear?
Swimmer’s ear stands for an infection in the ear canal that connects your eardrum to the outside of your head. The medical term for this condition is otitis externa. It develops due to the moisture in the ear after spending a long time in water. It can develop after showering, bathing and swimming. The moisture leads to the growth of bacteria and the condition of otitis externa develops. The condition can last for less than 6 weeks that is considered acute and can also last for more than 3 months can be characterized as chronic. Homeopathic remedies for swimmer’s ear reduce the swelling of ear, inflammation and also restricts the progression of the problem.
What are the Causes of Swimmer’s Ear?
The main cause of developing this condition is bacteria that enter the ear canal. The less common cause can be viral or fungal agents.
Reduction of ear wax, moisture in the ear can result in swimmer’s ear.
Ear wax (cerumen) is produced by our glands to acts as a defense agent of the ears in order to keep the ears clean and germ free. Ear wax makes a thin film inside the ear that is acidic in nature that restricts the flourishing of bacteria and also repels water in the ear. Scratching of the ear canal while cleaning the ear and excess moisture can result in depletion of ear wax and result in skin favoring bacterial growth.
What are the Risk Factors?
There are some risk factors that predispose a person to swimmer’s ear:
- Swimming (in water infested with bacteria)
- Excessive sweating that result in moisture in the ear, eventually enables the bacteria to grow
- Harsh cleaning of the ear canal using keys, ear buds and pins
- Use of headphones that break the skin lining inside of the ear resulting in bacterial growth
- Use of hearing aid
- Skin problems like skin allergies, Eczema, Psoriasis, allergies from cosmetics, hair dye and jewelry
What are the Symptoms of Swimmer’s Ear?
In the beginning, the swimmer’s ear shows mild symptoms but if left untreated it can become severe too.
- Itching in the ear
- Slight redness in the ear
- Draining of fluid from ear (odorless)
- Mild discomfort in the ear
- Intense itching
- Extensive redness of the ear
- Increased pain
- Excessive drainage of fluid
- Decreased hearing
- Feeling of fullness in the ear
- Partial blockage of ear canal due to swelling, fluid or debris
- Severe pain that radiates to the face, neck or side of the head
- Swelling or redness of the outer ear
- Swelling in the lymph nodes of the neck
- Complete blockage of ear canal
- Drainage of fluid can be very slight to excessive (odorless or pus)
Children are more likely to get outer ear infections due to their smaller ear canal as compared to adults that cause difficulty in proper drainage of discharge from the ears. Children are prone to get swimmer’s ear infection who spend excessive time in water. The young children who cannot speak might cry while touching the ear, the fluid may drain from the ear or may pull the ear. These children can be irritable, cry a lot and cannot sleep.
What are the Complications?
Most times it cannot get serious due to quick treatment. However, at times complications occur.
- The first complication can be temporary hearing loss that gets better with the treatment
- If the infection persists for more than three months it can become chronic or chronic otitis externa. There are high chances of becoming the condition chronic if it occurs due to the allergic skin reaction or if the person is suffering from psoriasis or dermatitis.
- In rare cases, it can cause infection of the deep layers of skin (cellulitis).
- Bone and cartilage damage surrounding the ear canal and the infection spreads to the brain. People with weakened immune system or suffering from Diabetes are at increased risk of this damage.
Homeopathic Remedies for Swimmer’s Ear
Homeopathic mode of treatment has natural remedies for swimmer’s ear infection and it is also useful in treating ear infections too. Homeopathic medicines can help the body to boost the healing mechanism to fight the bacterial infection that is causing swimmer’s ear infection and provide permanent relief. This natural cure will relieve the symptoms immediately. The symptoms to address are itching in the ear, pain in the ear, and sensation of fullness in ear. In addition, the discharges from the ear can also be reduced with the help of these medicines. Homeopathic treatment for swimmer’s ear is effective because of its production from natural substances and is safe for all age groups.
Homeopathic Remedies to Manage Earache in Swimmer’s Ear
Belladonna – To Manage Acute Inflammation
Belladonna is produced from the plant known as deadly nightshade of the family solanaceae. The whole plant is used to prepare this medicine. It is useful to treat the acute inflammation of the external ear. In these cases, this remedy also treats the pain in the ear. It is prescribed to manage the pain in the ear and the nature of the pain can be tearing, sharp, stitching or boring. The intensity of the pain is also violent and it radiates from the external ear to the side of the face. At times, the person also complains of difficulty in hearing.
Aconite – To Manage Reddening of External Ear
Aconite is produced from the plant Aconitum Napellus commonly called monkshood. The family of the plant is ranunculaceae. It is highly recommended when the external ear is hot and red with pain in the ear. The nature of the pain is tearing and stinging in patients of this medicine.
Chamomilla – To Manage Ear Pain with Soreness
Chamomilla is produced from the plant known as Matricaria chamomilla. It belongs to the family of Compositae. It is indicated in cases when there is ear pain with soreness and swelling and heat in the ear present. Chamomilla is needed when the pain is stitching in nature.
Pulsatilla – To Manage Severe Pain that Becomes Worse at Night
It is also one of the natural remedies for swimmer’s ear and it is produced from the plant of Pulsatilla Nigricans also known as windflower/pasque flower. It belongs to the family of Ranunculaceae. It is the best medicine to manage the severe pain that gets worse at night. The nature of the pain can be pulsating, tearing, shooting, stitching and darting. Apart from the previous features, swelling and marked redness of the external ear are also noticed and it is associated with intense itching in the air. In most cases there is pus or mucus discharges from the ear is present which is non-offensive in nature. The power of hearing is also diminished with a sensation of stoppage of the ear with previous features.
Homeopathy for Swimmer’s Ear with Itching in Ear
Hepar Sulph – To Manage Ear Discharge with Itching
Hepar Sulph is the best homeopathic remedy for swimmer’s ear with itching in the ear. In cases needing Hepar Sulph, green or offensive pus discharge from the ear is also noticed. Darting pain is also present with the previous symptoms.
Kali Bichrome – To Manage Inflamed External Ear with Itching
Kali Bichrome is another homeopathic medicine to treat itching in the ear in a swimmer’s ear infection. The external ear is swollen, inflamed and red with heated sensation with itching. Another feature to consider while prescribing it is violent stitching, pulsating or stinging pain in the ear. Additionally, the patient also complains of pain from the ear that radiates to the side of the head and neck. A thick yellow discharge that is offensive in nature oozes from the ear.
Tellurium – To Manage Throbbing Pain along with Itching
It is another indicated natural remedy for swimmer’s ear with itching. Tellurium is highly recommended when the person complains of earache that is throbbing in nature. The pain continues day and night. A burning sensation with swelling in the ear is also present. Along with the previous features, there is a copious, thin, watery discharge from the ears occurs. The color of the discharge can be yellow and the smell of the discharge is offensive. Hearing can also be disturbed with it.
Homeopathic Medicines for Swimmer’s Ear with Ear Discharges
Kali Mur – To Manage White Discharge
Kali Mur is the top rated homeopathic medicine to treat ear discharges. Patients needing it complain of white discharge from the ear with an earache. The hearing may also be impaired with it.
Silicea – To Manage Pus Discharge with Swelling
It is an ideal medicine to deal with pus discharges from the ear along with swelling of the external ear. Earache also occurs with the swelling. The type of pain can be shooting, drawing, aching, stitching or boring in nature. The rest of the features are decreased hearing and stoppage of ears.
Graphites – To Manage Thin, Watery Discharge
Graphites is one of the best homeopathic remedies for swimmer’s ear infection in which thin watery discharges from the ear also arise. The nature of the fluid is gluey and sticky. The odor may also be unpleasant. The pain of stitching type is also associated.
Psorinum – To Manage Thin, Offensive Discharge
Psorinum is another homeopathic medicine for swimmer’s ear in which offensive thin discharge from the ear is present. The color of the discharge can be brownish or yellowish. It is associated with a severe earache. Soreness in the external ear along with itching is also present in such cases. The itching is severe and it gets worse in the evening.
Merc Sol – To Manage Yellow/Green Discharge
Merc Sol acts well in cases of swimmers ear when green or yellow offensive discharges from the ear are prominent. The discharges can also be pus-like. Along with discharges, there is shooting, throbbing, stinging pain in the ears is present. The pain can radiate to the face and head as well. The pain becomes worse at night. A sensation of fullness and stoppage in the ear follows. Difficulty in hearing is also marked with itching in the ears.
How to Prevent Swimmer’s Ear
You can avoid swimmer’s ear by following these tips:
- Keep your ears dry: Dry your ears thoroughly after taking a bath or swimming.
- Avoid putting foreign objects in your ear: Do not scratch itch with items like paper clip, hairpin or matchstick.
- Avoid swimming if you recently had an ear infection
Note: Medicines mentioned here are for information purpose only. Kindly do not self-medicate.
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I had accomplished D. H. M. S in 2008, I have been into practice (in Rawalpindi & Islamabad) for more or less 14 years. During my practice, I have been treating acute as well as chronic disorders. I had also completed MHS (Masters of Human Sexuality) in 2014 from SAIHS. Covid-19, Dengue fever, Genetic Disorders, Auto-immune Diseases, Sexual dysfunctions and disorders in males as well as females attract my attention, therefore, I love to solve these cases.
Apart from Homeopathy, I am M.A in English Literature from Punjab University. I have been teaching English at Post Graduate National College Rawalpindi for 7 years. So I am holding two noble professions. I have written more than 7000 articles on different subjects. To be more specific I have authored different websites as well.