In September 2011, I got a painful ear infection (otitis) after swimming in the sea. I was given antibiotics, which eventually got rid of it. I didn't swim again until 2013. When I did, I got another otitis, and again needed antibiotics to clear it.

The symptoms were intense pain in my left ear, with the left side of my head/neck slightly numb to the touch.

Since then, I've suffered intermittent mild ear problems with increasing frequency. After sleeping on my left side, I often wake up with my hearing slightly blocked and discomfort that goes down to my shoulder.

Water coming into contact with my ear is always problematic. When I swim, I now always do so with earplugs - and I no longer put my head under water. Despite this, if I get splashed with water, just a drop coming into contact with my ear tends to cause it to become blocked and painful for the next few days. Even showering can be a problem.

I feel this problem is gradually worsening. Please help.
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replied February 24th, 2019
Hello and welcome to EHF !


I went through your query and i want you to know that chronic otitis media needs work up for the cause. Cholesteatoma, chronic secretory otitis media also is a possiblty. Swimming is itself a risk factor for otitis externa.


Take care


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