remedies swimmers ear

You don’t have to be a swimmer to get swimmers ear. There are other causes for this painful condition. If you are looking for a swimmers ear home remedy then take a look at some of these remedies.

Swimmer’s Ear, also known as Otitis Externa, is a bacterial infection that occurs in the outer ear canal. It gets its name because it often occurs in people who swim a lot. However, this painful condition can also result from:

  • Wearing a hearing aid.
  • Using cotton swabs, your fingernail, or a hairpin to clean your ears.
  • Using hairspray or hair coloring.
  • Not properly drying your ears after a shower.
  • If you suffer from another skin condition such as psoriasis or seborrheic dermatitis.

Swimmer’s ear causes pain, itchiness, and discharge from the ear which may be a clear liquid. You may also have some temporary hearing loss. Below are some home remedies for swimmers ear. If you have a perforated ear drum or had one in the past, you should avoid home treatment and speak to your doctor first. Consult your doctor before doing any home treatment yourself.


7 Home Remedies for Swimmers Ear



Garlic is known to fight bacteria.

  • Put some grated garlic in a bowl and cover with olive oil. Leave to soak overnight.
  • In the morning, strain the solution through a sieve.
  • Warm the oil slightly. You want it to be just warm to the touch. Inserting cool fluids in your ear can cause dizziness. Do not put hot liquid in your ear as this will burn the delicate skin of your ear canal.
  • Use a dropper to put 3-4 drops of the oil into the affected ear.
  • Keep your head to one side so a few minutes so that the oil can run along the canal and not straight back out of your ear.



Olive oil has known antiseptic properties.

  • Warm some olive oil
  • Apply as above for warm garlic oil.


  • Mix a few drops of white vinegar with warm, not hot, water.
  • Apply as above for warm garlic oil.



Wrap a hot water bottle in a thick towel, or use a heating pad and hold it against your ear. This can help relieve your earache so that you don’t have to take pain-relieving drugs.



If your ear is itchy, use a product such as Swim-Ear. Follow the instructions on the label to insert correctly. If you are using an OTC preparation then do not put anything else in your ears such as garlic oil or vinegar.

Don’t use ear candles. They have no proven benefit and can cause serious injury.



If you wear a hearing aid, leave it out as much as possible until the swelling and discharge stops.



To treat swimmers ear and help prevent it occurring again, keep your ears dry. Wear ear plugs when swimming or showering.  Alternatively, when taking a shower, wear a shower cap or use cotton wool covered with Vaseline to plug your ears. Always dry your ears well after showering or washing your hair. If you use hairspray, take care to avoid your ears when spraying it on your hair.


Symptoms to watch out for during home treatment

If you get any of these symptoms, you need to speak to your doctor who can prescribe pain-killers and antibiotics:

  • Swelling, redness, or severe pain inside and behind your ear.
  • Bleeding or discharge from your ear.
  • If infection sets in, you may have a green discharge due to pus.
  • Dizziness or ringing in your ears.
  • The condition doesn’t improve in a week.

If you are suffering from mild symptoms of swimmers ear, you can treat the condition at home without using prescribed medicines.  Why not try a swimmers ear home remedy listed above? But remember, if the condition gets worse, you should see your doctor.