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Swimmer’s Ear Treatment

Swimmer’s Ear Treatment Specialist in Alexandria, and Ruther Glen VA

Swimmer’s ear treatment typically involves ear drops to reduce inflammation and fight infection, often providing relief within a few days. Keeping the ear dry and following the prescribed medication regimen is crucial for a swift and complete recovery. For more information, please contact us or use our online check-in. We have convenient locations in Ruther Glen and Alexandria, VA.

Swimmer’s Ear Treatment Near Me in Alexandria and Ruther Glen VA
Swimmer’s Ear Treatment Near Me in Alexandria and Ruther Glen VA

Table of Contents:

Who is most likely to get swimmer’s ear?
Can you get a swimmer’s ear infection without swimming?
Can a swimmer’s ear infection go away by itself?
How can you tell if it’s swimmer’s ear or an ear infection?

Who is most likely to get swimmer’s ear?


Swimmer’s ear, also known as otitis externa, is a painful infection of the outer ear canal. This condition commonly affects youth who spend a lot of time in the water, as well as adults who frequently swim or have water-related occupations. In addition, people who live in humid climates or have narrow ear canals are also more susceptible to developing otitis externa. 

The most common cause of a swimmer’s ear is swimming in unclean water. It’s crucial to limit contact with unclean pool or hot tub water and see a doctor if symptoms arise. If you use hearing aids, often wear earplugs, or frequently clean your ears with cotton swabs, you are at greater risk of experiencing a swimmer’s ear. Furthermore, skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis also increase the risk of this condition.

Can you get a swimmer’s ear infection without swimming?


Yes, it is possible to develop an outer ear infection without actually taking a dip in the water. While a swimmer’s ear infection is often associated with water exposure, other factors can also contribute to its development. For example, moisture from showers, baths, or excessive sweating can create an environment in which bacteria thrive.

In addition, your fingers, cotton swabs, hearing aids, earplugs, and earphones can introduce bacteria or cause small injuries in the ear canal, leading to infection. So, although contaminated water is the leading cause of swimmer’s ear, there are other reasons why you may have developed this infection. If you’re experiencing symptoms like redness inside your ear, fluid drainage, or decreased or muffled hearing, it’s important to speak with a healthcare provider to pinpoint the root cause of your discomfort. 

Can a swimmer’s ear infection go away by itself?


While mild cases of swimmer’s ear may resolve on their own with proper self-care, such as keeping the ear dry and avoiding further irritation, more severe infections typically require medical treatment. For example, over-the-counter pain relievers and ear drops can alleviate milder symptoms of swimmer’s ear; prescription antibiotics or antifungal ear drops are often necessary to fully clear the infection. 

It is important not to ignore symptoms or delay treatment, as an untreated swimmer’s ear infection can lead to complications such as hearing loss, chronic infections, or the spread of infection to surrounding tissues. For an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment of ear pain and inflammation, you can visit an urgent care clinic or your primary care physician.

How can you tell if it’s swimmer’s ear or an ear infection?


When you come in to see a doctor, they will determine whether your symptoms are caused by swimmer’s ear (otitis externa) or a middle ear infection (otitis media). Swimmer’s ear typically involves pain in the outer ear and ear canal, which may worsen when the outer ear is touched or pulled. In addition, this type of infection may result in clear, yellow, or pus-like discharge. Patients often describe the ear canal as feeling itchy. 

In contrast, a middle ear infection typically causes deeper pain inside the ear, often with a feeling of pressure or fullness, and is more likely to be accompanied by fever. While hearing loss can occur in both conditions, balance issues, and dizziness are more common with middle ear infections. 

Seeing a healthcare provider for accurate diagnosis and proper treatment is essential if you have a swimmer’s ear or a middle ear infection. During your visit, the doctor will use an otoscope to assess the ear canal and eardrum and pinpoint the cause of your symptoms. In some cases, the healthcare professional may take a sample of any discharge for laboratory analysis.

At PACS Urgent Care, we provide comprehensive care for ear infections, such as swimmer’s ear and middle ear infections. For more information, please contact us or use our online check-in. We have convenient locations in Ruther Glen and Alexandria, VA. We serve patients from Alexandria VA, Huntington VA, Arlington VA, Ruther Glen VA, Bagdad VA, Athens VA, Doswell VA, and surrounding areas.

Our Locations

Ruther Glen

  • 11073 Colonel Armistead Drive Suite 105 Ruther Glen, VA
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Alexandria

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