While the scorching heat continues at full speed, some diseases that may spoil the joy of the areas in the sea or in the pool to cool off can knock on the door. One of those common diseases is external auditory canal inflammation! External ear canal inflammation, which is medically defined as external otitis; It occurs when the ear remains moist after swimming or the water remaining in the ear creates a humid environment that will prepare the ground for bacterial growth.swimmer's earIt is also called ”(swimmer's ear). Stating that external ear canal inflammation is more common in swimming lovers, Acıbadem Ataşehir Surgical Medical Center Ear Nose Throat Specialist Assoc. Dr. Turhan San gave information about the factors causing this problem and the measures that can be taken; made important warnings and suggestions.
The most important reason is bacteria!
There are two important factors that cause external ear inflammation; Infections and inflammations caused by various reasons. Especially "Pseudomanas aeruginosa" and some similar bacteria and sometimes fungi that pass through the pool and sea or polluted waters cause this problem. Stating that external ear inflammation is seen most frequently with bacterial factors, ENT specialist Assoc. Dr. Turhan San explains the formation of inflammation as follows: “External ear canal; A way that connects the auricle with the eardrum. The skin of the cartilaginous part at the entrance of the external auditory canal is thick, containing glands and hair follicles. These external glands secrete sweat, sebum and serum. These glands help to remove epithelial wastes by lubricating the duct skin and hair follicles. The main function of the ear canal is to carry the sound waves in the environment to the eardrum. In order to perform this function, the lumen of the canal must be open and it must maintain a healthy and solid structure. " Keratin residues are spilled intermittently on the epithelial cover that covers the ear canal, and these can block the canal, creating an environment for the reproduction of possible pathogens. To prevent this, the eardrum and external auditory canal have a self-cleaning mechanism.
The external ear canal is protecting!
Stating that the external auditory canal has different features for protecting the ear, ENT Specialist Assoc. Dr. Turhan San said, “An important feature is that the pH value is acidic, so bacteria that enter the ear can be prevented from being alive. It also has a water-resistant skin surface that is tightly attached to the outer ear canal. Thus, it prevents the ear from being irritated. "The secretions secreted by the serum and other external glands are antibacterial, preventing them from killing and harming bacteria," he says.
Pain, itching, discharge ...
External ear inflammation has different symptoms. When the cartilaginous protrusion in the external auditory canal is pressed, an increasing pain occurs. In addition, itching, odorless-clear ear discharge and a feeling of fullness in the ears. The outer ear canal looks edematous and red. In the more advanced stage, there is a thick discharge, edema in the external auditory canal increases, and this causes hearing loss. In addition, enlargement can be seen in the lymph nodes around the ear. If not treated early, the infection can spread to other parts of the body. Therefore, it is necessary to consider the symptoms and consult a specialist immediately.
Need medical treatment
In the first days of itching and mild deep pain in the external ear canal, treatment can be made much easier. The aim of the treatment is to relieve the pain of the patient in the short term, and to restore the normal structure of the external auditory canal and its deteriorating acidic pH in the long term. Systemic pain medications are used for pain. Antiseptic, antibiotic and steroid ear drops may need to be used for 7-10 days as topical treatment. Although antibiotics are the first choice in systemic treatment, antibiotics used for patients under the age of 17 and adults may differ.
Protect your ear from water
External auditory canal inflammation can recur! For this reason, it is very important to inform the patient about how to take precautions after treatment. Acıbadem Ataşehir Surgical Medical Center Ear Nose Throat Specialist Assoc. Dr. Turhan San said, “The ear should be protected from water and no external intervention should be made in the external auditory canal. The ear should be protected from water for at least 6 weeks after the treatment, ”he says. Assoc. Dr. Turhan San lists 4 precautions to be taken against external ear canal inflammation as follows;
- Use silicone earmuffs or cotton completely covered with petroleum jelly for water protection.
- If you are unable to use them, tilt your head to help water flow out of the ear canal after each contact with water and use a hair dryer to dry the outer ear canal. However, use the hair dryer on a low speed and do not hold it close to your ear. Keep at least 30 cm or a foot distance between your ear and the dryer.
- Use earplugs while bathing or swimming if you are prone to recurrent otitis media or if you swim frequently.
- After each swim, drip 5 milliliters (one teaspoon) of acetic acid (contained in vinegar) into your ear. Vinegar helps balance the pH value of the ear.
Who are susceptible to external ear infections?
- Persons with narrow external ear canal and prone to water accumulation
- Those with excess hair at the entrance of the external ear canal
- Those living in humid and hot regions
- Those with chronic skin diseases such as eczema
- Injury to the outer ear canal skin as a result of trauma (inserting objects such as cotton swabs or hairpins into the ear)
- People with excessive earwax
- People with a tightly fitted hearing aid mold
Hibya News Agency