Monday, March 27, 2023

Don’t let ‘swimmer’s ear’ get you down this summer

(Southside Daily file/Courtesy of Pixabay)
(Southside Daily file/Courtesy of Pixabay)

Kids all across the region have been staying busy at the beach, pool, or water parks during the summer months — the prime environment for outer ear infections, or “swimmer’s ear.”

In a recent video posted to their website, specialists at Eastern Virginia Medical School are helping parents identify the common summertime condition.

Dr. Cristina Baldassari is an associate professor for EVMS’ ear, nose, and throat surgeons. She said swimmer’s ear occurs when bacteria grows on the outer canal of the ear.

“For those kids, it hurts when you pull on their ear and they also can have some kind of drainage and whitish looking debris in their ear as well,” she said.

Unlike a traditional ear infection requiring oral antibiotics, Baldassari said swimmer’s ear can be treated with antibiotic drops in the ear and can be easily prevented.

“Actually, white vinegar works well if you put a few drops in the ear after swimming, also just wearing earplugs works as well,” she said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more ways to prevent swimmer’s ear, including refraining from removing ear wax which protects ear canals from infection.

The CDC’s website also listed more signs of swimmer’s ear including:

  • Itchiness inside the ear.
  • Redness and swelling of the ear.
  • Pus draining from the infected ear.

John Mangalonzo
John Mangalonzo
John Mangalonzo ( is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.

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