Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Swimmer's Ear- Prevention and Treatment

If you've made it this far into the summer without anyone in your family getting swimmer's ear, congratulations! You're probably either not swimming, or you've been consistently putting drops in your ears after swimming. What drops do we use? We make our own home brew of half and half, alcohol and vinegar. (Yes, rubbing alcohol and generic cooking white vinegar.) To be honest, I like the convenience of the over-the-counter little bottle, so I actually buy one and pour out the contents, replacing it with our home remedy. An extra tip is to set it outside (in the shade in Texas) where it will warm up a bit before you put drops in your ears, so it's not cold and irritating.

This mix will actually work both for prevention and for treatment, if you forgot to use it ahead of time. Nine times out of ten, this will be all you will need! The vinegar kills the fungus, and the alcohol dries up any moisture that remains.
If you are an ear-wax-builder-upper, you may need to flush your ears periodically (such as once per month) using an infant bulb syringe and luke warm tap water, to remove packed in ear wax prior to putting in the home brew drops.

BOTTOM LINE: As always, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, but remember vinegar/alcohol ear drops for swimmer's ear and you'll be set!