Chances are you’ve had the feeling of having water lodged in your ear at some point after being in the pool. Some swimmers head to the locker room to ‘head bang’ the water out, while others infuse their canal with alcohol solutions.
In any case, it’s a good idea to rid your ears of the annoying, muffled hearing sensation quickly. Any water remaining lodged in your canal becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. Leave water in your ear for too long and you may be facing otitis externa, commonly known as swimmer’s ear.
According to WebMD, you have to be especially careful about how you dry your inner-ear if you have a ruptured eardrum or tubes. Here are some tips to help ease your aquatic discomfort and get back into the swim of things.
How to unblock ear after swimming?
- Tip your head to one side to enable water to drain. Gently pulling on your earlobe will help straighten your ear canal to enable water to flow outward.
- Hold your hair dryer at least a foot away from your head and turn the device on the lowest setting. Point it inside your ear from that safe distance to help dry water.
- Clear the trapped water with the help of an over the counter ‘instant dry’ ear drop product, such as Swim-Ear. Several products like this include a combination of isopropyl alcohol and inactive glycerin to help ease the discomfort. They help dry out the water within seconds.
- You can also create your own at-home concoction of ear-drying magic. Mix 1 part white vinegar to 1 part rubbing alcohol. Simply pour 1 teaspoon of each mixture into each ear before tilting your head to drain it out.
Regardless of the method of clearing your ears, experiencing trapped water is simply a part of the swim life. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seek medical attention if you have ear discharge, pain or any persistent hearing impairment.