What happens if swimmer’s ear goes untreated?
Without treatment, infections can continue to occur or persist. Bone and cartilage damage (malignant otitis externa) are also possible due to untreated swimmer’s ear. If left untreated, ear infections can spread to the base of your skull, brain, or cranial nerves.
Can swimmer’s ear turn into something worse?
Swimmer’s Ear Complications
But sometimes, it can get worse or lead to other problems, such as: Long-term swimmer’s ear (chronic otitis externa). This is when swimmer’s ear doesn’t go away within 3 months. It can happen if you have hard-to-treat bacteria, fungus, allergies, or skin conditions like psoriasis or eczema.
How bad can Swimmer’s ear be?
Swimmer’s ear usually isn’t serious if treated promptly, but complications can occur. Temporary hearing loss. You might have muffled hearing that usually gets better after the infection clears. Long-term infection (chronic otitis externa).
Should I go to the hospital for swimmer’s ear?
When to see a doctor
Call your doctor if you are having any signs of swimmer’s ear. You should call even if your signs are mild. If you have severe pain or a fever, you should go to the emergency room. If swimmer’s ear goes untreated, you can have serious problems.
How long can swimmers ear go untreated?
It generally lasts up to seven to 10 days but this can vary, especially in chronic cases that can continue for weeks and months. Treatment usually decreases the duration of symptoms.
Why is swimmer’s ear so painful?
Swimmer’s ear (otitis externa) is a painful inflammation and infection of the ear canal. It occurs when the protective film that covers the ear canal (lipid layer) is removed. This causes the ear canal to look red and swollen.
Can ear infection spread to jaw?
Otitis externa is a common ear infection also known as swimmer’s ear. It develops in the ear canal leading to the eardrum. In some cases, otitis externa can spread to surrounding tissue, including the bones of the jaw and face.
How do you sleep with swimmers ear?
Rest with your head on two or more pillows, so the affected ear is higher than the rest of your body. Or if the left ear has an infection, sleep on your right side.
Can swimmer’s ear be cured?
Swimmer’s ear is a treatable condition that usually goes away quickly with appropriate treatment. Usually, swimmer’s ear can be easily treated with antibiotic eardrops. However, regardless of the cause, moisture and irritation will prolong healing of the infected ear.
How is swimmer’s ear caused?
Swimmer’s ear can occur when water stays in the ear canal for long periods of time, providing the perfect environment for germs to grow and infect the skin. Germs found in pools and other places we swim are one of the most common causes of swimmer’s ear. Swimmer’s ear cannot be spread from one person to another.