Swimmers urged to get ears checked

Swimmers are being urged to think about protecting their ears before hitting the water this summer.

Swimmer’s ear is an inflammation of the external ear canal that can often lead to an infection. It occurs when water becomes trapped in the ear, most often as a result of swimming, however it can occur whenever your ears are exposed to water that can get into the ear canal.

The condition can cause extreme discomfort, and can often be identified when sufferers find it painful to touch their outer ear.

Kalpna Raval, hearcare director at Specsavers Hearing Centre Horsham, said: ‘With the recent good weather people are bound to be flocking to their local pools or beach to go swimming. As a result, we need to think about protecting our ears. Swimmer’s ear is a very common and painful condition that is best avoided.

“When water becomes trapped in your ear canal, it can lead to more complicated problems. As the water remains stagnant, it can become a hive for infection causing bacteria.”

It is estimated one in ten people will suffer from the swimmer’s ear at some point in their lives. While there are various treatments for the condition, including antibiotic eardrops, Kalpna advises that prevention is the best treatment for the condition.

She explained ways or avoiding swimmer’s ear include protecting ears with swimming moulds, be sure to thoroughly dry your ears and do not to push cotton buds or the end of a towel into your ears to try and dry them.

Specialised hearing protection is available at Specsavers Hearing Centre in West Street, Horsham. To book a free hearing check call 01403 275 115.