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What is Swimmer’s Ear?

Swimmer’s ear is an infection of the outer part of the ear canal and the external ear. It occurs most commonly following extended exposure to water. Because the infection causes inflammation of the external ear, it is medically known as otitis externa.

Otitis externa (or swimmer’s ear) is different from the usual middle ear infection that children get, which is called otitis media (or middle ear) that occurs mostly in the fall and winter with a cold. If the ear can be wiggled or pulled without discomfort or pain, then the ear infection is probably otitis media and not otitis externa (Swimmer’s Ear).

If your child’s ear hurts to move and they are 4 years or older with no ear tubes, make sure you look at this video! It could save you a trip to the office, as we may be able to give you an antibiotic over the phone. 

For more information, please see Dr. Hartman’s video on Swimmer’s Ear HERE.

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