It has ever happened to all of us: after showering or bathing in the sea or a pool, water enters our ears and causes us an annoying feeling of plugging. In addition, this fact increases the risk of possible ear infections such as otitis. In the next post, we explain the best ways to get water out of your ear.
It is not something serious (as long as it is controlled) but it can be very annoying because sometimes when we turn the head we notice a “ little crack ” or “ tickle ” inside the ears and sometimes it even causes listening problems.
The water usually drains on its own. But there are things in which that water gets trapped and causes an ear infection.
This type of ear infection in the external ear canal is called swimmer’s ear. There are a number of very simple tricks that can help flush that water out of your ears.
How to get water out of your ears?
If the water gets trapped in your ear, you can try several home remedies to get water out of your ear:
Move your earlobe
This first method can get the water out of the ear right away. If for example, we have water in the right ear, we must tilt the head towards the right shoulder and gently pull the earlobe. You can try shaking your head from one side to another side.
Make gravity do the work
With this technique, gravity should help to get water out of your ear. Lie on your side of that ear for a few minutes, with a towel to absorb the water. The water can slowly come out of your ear.
Create a vacuum
The other method to get water out of your ear, try to make a vacuum. This method will create a vacuum that can draw the water out. Keep tilting your head sideways and rest your ear on the palm, squeezing and creating a tight seal.
Gently push your hand back and forth towards her ear in one quick motion, flattening her as you push her and hollowing her out as you push her away. Tilt your head down to allow the water to come out.
Apply a warm compress
Another great tip to get water out of your ear, apply a warm compress. Water can sometimes get trapped in the eustachian tubes (which connect your middle ear to the area just behind your nostrils). This technique can help release the water.
Use hot but not boiling water and dampen a cloth. Make sure to wring out the cloth before use so it doesn’t leak.
Using a hairdryer
Using a hairdryer will be ideal for evaporating the water inside the ear. It is recommended to turn it on at the lowest power and place it at a safe distance, to avoid burns, and leave it for a few minutes. This will cause the water to blow out of the windblown by the dryer, or to dry out and evaporate from the heat. This is another great method to get water out of your ear.
Set the hairdryer to its lowest setting. Hold the hairdryer about 20cm away from your ear and rock it back and forth. While putting on the earlobe, let the slightly warmed air enter your ear.
Try the alcohol and vinegar drops
Alcohol can help evaporate the water in the ear. Alcohol also works to kill bacteria growth, which can help prevent infection. If trapped water occurs due to earwax build-up, vinegar can help remove it.
Combine equal parts of rubbing alcohol and vinegar to make ear drops. Using a sterile dropper, apply three to four drops of this mixture into the ear.
Don’t use this method if you have any of these conditions:
- An external ear infection
- A perforated eardrum
- Tympanostomy tubes (eardrum tubes)
Use hydrogen peroxide drops
The hydrogen peroxide can help eliminate waste, excess wax, bacteria, or the water trapped ears. Using a clean dropper, put three to four drops of hydrogen peroxide in your ear. Wait two or three minutes. Tilt the affected side down, allowing the fluid to drain.
Do not use this method if you think you have any of these conditions:
• An outer ear infection
• A perforated eardrum
• Tympanostomy tubes (eardrum tubes)
Try olive oil
Olive oil can also help prevent ear infections and removes water. Heat some olive oil in a small bowl. Using a clean dropper, put a few drops of the oil in the affected ear.
Lie on the opposite side for about 10 minutes and then sit down and tilt your ear down. The water and oil should drain.
Yawn or chew
When water gets stuck in the Eustachian tubes, moving your mouth can sometimes help open the tubes.
Yawn or chew gum to relieve tension in the Eustachian tubes. Tilt your head to release the water from your ear.
Perform the Valsalva maneuver
This method can also help open closed Eustachian tubes and remove water from the ears. Be careful not to blow too hard. This can damage the eardrum.
Close your mouth and gently pinch your nostrils closed with your fingers. Take a deep breath and slowly push the air out of your nose. If you hear a popping sound, it means that the Eustachian tubes have opened.
Tilt your head to allow the water to drain out of the ear.
The hot steam can help release water from the middle ear through the Eustachian tubes. Try taking a hot shower or:
Fill a large container with hot water. Cover your head with a towel to keep the steam in and keep your face over the bowl. Inhale the steam for 5-10 minutes, then tilt your head to the side to drain your ear.
Try more water
This technique may seem counterintuitive, but it can actually help draw water out of the ear.Lying on its side, fill the affected ear with plain seawater using a clean dropper. Wait five seconds and then turn it over, affected ear down. All the water should drain.
A number of over-the-counter ear drops are also available.
Most are alcohol-based and can help reduce moisture in the external ear canal, as well as eliminate bacteria or remove wax and debris.
Things to avoid to get water out of the ear
If home remedies don’t work, don’t resort to using your finger or any other object to dig into the ear. Doing this can make things worse by:
- Add bacteria to the area
- Push the water deeper into your ear
- Injuring the ear canal
- Pierce your eardrum
How to prevent the problem
These tricks can help prevent water from getting stuck in your ear in the future.
- Wear earplugs or a hat that covers your ears when you go swimming.
- After spending some time soaking in water, dry the outside of the ear well with a towel.
Symptoms of an ear infection
- Itching inside the ear or ear canal
- Pain that intensifies when you pull on the outside of the ear or when you chew
- Feeling that the ear is plugged or blocked
- Reduced level of hearing
- Fluid or pus draining from the ear
- Swollen lymph nodes around the ear
- An ear infection can become serious if you don’t get prompt treatment.
It can lead to hearing loss or other complications, such as cartilage and bone damage. Your doctor may prescribe medications to prevent or clear infection and relieve pain.
When to see a doctor?
Trapped water in the ears usually clears up without treatment.
If your ear becomes inflamed, you may have developed an ear infection. If it bothers you, you can try one of these home treatments to help ease its discomfort. But if the water is still trapped after two or three days or if it shows signs of infection, you should see a doctor.