Tips On Protecting Against Ear Infection While Showering And Swimming
The ear is prone to many infections that can become very serious if left untreated. Infections can be caused by a bacterium or a virus. Some infections may be the result of both. Labyrinthitis is an inflammation and infection of the labyrinth. The labyrinth is passages in the inner ear that are filled with fluid. These passages control balance. Labyrinthitis is normally caused by a virus but can be the result of bacterial infections that originated in the middle ear and then spread to the inner ear.
The symptoms of Labyrinthitis are vertigo, loss of balance, nausea, vomiting, involuntary eye movements, and loss of hearing. If it is due to a bacterial infection, your doctor will probably prescribe antibiotics. However, antibiotics are not effective if it is a viral infection. Your doctor can prescribe drugs for the nausea. The dizziness may last several days to several weeks. Balance problems can endure for several weeks to months but they usually occur only after a quick movement. Fortunately, this is a rare disease.
Otitis externa is an inflammation and infection of the outer ear. It is also referred to as outer ear infection and swimmer’s ear. It is caused by either bacteria or fungi. If the infection is caused by bacteria a boil or abscess often appears. Otitis externa is usually the result of water getting into the ear canal. The symptoms are itching, swelling, pain and a yellowish discharge from the ear. If not treated promptly the infection may spread and the ear may be very painful when you touch it. It is important to see your doctor when these symptoms occur.
Treatment depends on the cause of the infection. The doctor will inspect your ear with an otoscope and then decide upon the appropriate medication. When the infection is caused by bacteria, the doctor will prescribe antibiotics. But for those infections that are caused by a fungus, antifungal drugs are given. Both medicines are usually administered in the form of eardrops. For both types of infections, anti-inflammatory medications will be prescribed to reduce the swelling. A person must be very careful not to get water in the ear while the infection is healing. Most infections will heal within a week. To keep water out of the ear during that time, when you are bathing, place a cotton ball soaked in petroleum jelly in each ear and remove after exposure to water.
The best way to prevent outer ear infection is to keep your ears dry. If you do get water in them while swimming, bathing or shampooing your hair ensure to dry your ears thoroughly. Wearing a shower cap pulled down over your ears when Steam Showering and wearing a bathing cap while swimming will also prevent water from getting into your ears. Diabetics are in particular danger if they develop Otitis externa, as they are susceptible to developing other serious infections as a result of the ear infection. Anyone who is diabetic should go to their doctor immediately after they experience any of the symptoms as prompt treatment can prevent the spread of the infection.
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