How to get water out of the ear?
Having water in your ears after submerging your head in the pool or the sea is something that can happen and that, in principle, does not entail any danger. However, a strange sensation may arise, as if there is water inside the ear. How do I know if I have water in my ear? Sometimes the presence of retained fluid inside the ear is noticeable. On other occasions, a kind of ‘plugging’ is seen, which may affect hearing.
It is essential to uncover the ear to avoid discomfort and the risk of infection or otitis that its prolonged presence implies. To do this, try to remove it without damaging the ears. If you do not get it or feel severe discomfort, go to the doctor to treat the problem. If you have mild pain, you can try some of the following OneHOWTO tips on how to get water out of your ear?
- Insert the tip of the towel
- Stretch the pinna
- Do an external massage.
- Dry with the hairdryer
- Try the Valsalva maneuver.
- to rest
- hand cupping
- Using isopropyl drops or sprays
- Put a hot compress
- What not to do to remove water from the ear
1. Insert the tip of the towel
If you are wondering how to get water out of the ear, this is one of the simplest and most effective remedies. It introduces the point of a cloth, such as a clean cloth, a handkerchief, or a towel. The idea is that when it comes into contact with the water in the ear, the tissue absorbs it, thus managing to remove it. It is about inserting only the tip of the cloth without pushing or squeezing not to damage the ear canal.
Without a doubt, the first thing you have to do if water has entered your ear is to try to get it out due to the effect of gravity. Tilt your head to the right or left, depending on which ear you notice is plugged. Repeat the movement several times, trying to get the water out by simple gravity. You can also try to make small jumps accompanying the turn of the head so that the movement is even more effective.
3. Stretch the pinna
Unless you have extraordinary abilities, most of us cannot move our ears, which would help remove anything that has gotten into the ear. What we can do is ‘stretch’ them with the help of our fingers. Grab the tip of your ear and gently pull it up (vertical). Then do the same but pull it from the side (horizontal).
Repeat both gestures several times and then tilt your head to the side of the ear that bothers you. The movement may be able to mobilize the water until you manage to get it out.
4. Do an external massage.
Putting gentle pressure on the ear can also help you achieve your goal. If you notice that water has entered you, massage the lobular area while keeping your head tilted to the right or left. Place your index finger behind your earlobe and place your ring finger in front, as if you were going to cover your ear. Move both fingers simultaneously in gentle circular motions to help get the water out.
5. Dry with the hairdryer
You can use the hairdryer to try to dry the retained water by the air it gives off, but always do it with due caution. Use the dryer at minimum temperature, just a few minutes, and at a safe distance from the ear to avoid greater evils.
6. Try the Valsalva maneuver.
Even if the name doesn’t ring a bell, indeed, you’ve done it at some point if you usually travel by plane, when, on takeoff or landing, the change in height and pressure makes your ears plugged. The maneuver consists of taking a deep breath and then expelling the air with the mouth closed and the nose covered.
The effect of unclogging the ear is usually immediate, and the same gesture could be practical to clear the ears after swimming or taking a bath.
7. To rest
Sometimes the water refuses to come out, but it’s just a matter of time. If the discomfort is bearable, try resting for a few hours, resting your head on a pillow on the side of the clogged ear. Maintaining that position for a long time while you relax can help the water come out on its own.
8. Hand cupping
It’s a little trick that can also work. Press the ear with the palm of your hand. Consecutively, move your hand away and press again, repeating the process steadily. It is about creating an ’empty’ effect, like the one achieved using a suction cup.
Opening your mouth and closing it again consecutively can help the water come out. Yawn a couple of times, then tilt your head to the affected side. In this way, yawning can mobilize water from the ear, which will come out when you tilt your head.
Eating something or moving the jaw, imitating the gesture we make when chewing, is a way of internally mobilizing the middle ear area. This simple gesture can also give good results when removing water from the ear.
11. Using isopropyl drops or sprays
If you are clear that the discomfort you suffer in the ear is because you have retained water, ask your pharmacist about using specific medications that can help to expel it. The most common and effective are drops or sprays that contain isopropyl alcohol. Before using them, prior consultation with the doctor is essential.
If the plugging continues after using these sprays, you should assess if, perhaps, it is due to having wax in the ear.
12. Put a hot compress
Placing a compress, previously moistened in hot water, on the ear can help promote the dilation of the internal ducts, making it easier for the retained water to escape. You can try this remedy as long as you do not feel pain in the ear.
What not to do to remove water from the ear
Whenever possible, try to prevent water from entering the ear. If you practice swimming or any other water sport that involves immersing your head, it is advisable to use specific earplugs. Even so, if finally, the water ends up entering your ears, it is essential to try to remove it, taking the utmost care not to damage the ear. To do this, keep in mind these tips on what not to do to remove water from an ear :
- Never introduce an object (forks, syringes) to try to extract the water, not even the classic cotton swabs. You could inadvertently push water further into your middle ear or injure yourself.
- Also, do not try to use disinfectant liquids on your own, such as hydrogen peroxide, pure alcohol, vinegar.
- Do not take medication without the advice of a doctor or pharmacist.
Now that you know how to remove water from the ear if, in addition to noticing the water, you detect any secretion, pain, buzzing, dizziness. Go to the specialist without delay as it could be an infection. To detect it, we recommend you take a look at our article on What are the symptoms of an ear infection.
This article is merely informative; at one HOW TO, we do not have the power to prescribe any medical treatment or make any diagnosis. We invite you to go to a doctor in the event of presenting any condition or discomfort.
If you want to read more articles similar to How to get water out of the ear, we recommend visiting our Diseases and secondary effects category.
How to get water out of the ear?