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How Long Can Water Stay in Your Ear?

Scuba diving can open you up to a number of different trials and tribulations that can be difficult to work through, from finding out how to calculate compressed air consumption to remove excess water in your ears. It is important that you are well researched in terms of what to do in a diving crisis so that you can help preserve your own and your teammate’s safety and good health.  


Water build-up and how long it lasts 

If you are an avid scuba diver, you may find that fluid and water build up in your ears are a serious issue that you face regularly. Obviously, for those who spend significant amounts of time in the water, it is normal to experience water in your ears. However, if it is causing you pain or discomfort, I would recommend that you seek treatment and advice from a professional to ensure that you are kept in peak physical condition. In a normal situation, any water that you can feel lingering in your ears should dissipate within a few hours to a couple of days maximum, if you find that there is fluid in your ears for longer than this, then it could be a sign of infection, and medical advice should be sought after immediately.  


Can age affect this? 

If you are an older citizen who still enjoys partaking in water sports activities like scuba diving, then it is likely that you will experience trapped water more often than those who are younger. With age, there are many factors to consider if you are going to continue safely doing activities like this, including making sure that every part of your body is looked after. Although there is no maximum age for scuba diving, older divers should be doing everything they can to ensure they are safe and healthy enough to continue. This includes avoiding any medical complications caused by water trapped in the ears.  


Issues That Can be Caused by Trapped Water. 

One of the biggest issues that can come with water being trapped within your ears for a long period of time would be an infection, ear infections have many symptoms including, sharp pains, distorted hearing, and fluid coming from the ears, so you must have treatments available to remedy this issue as soon as possible to prevent further problems. As is the case when it comes to any kind of infection, if it is left untreated, then the condition will only worsen. If the water trapped in your ears has developed to this stage, then I would highly recommend that you visit a medical professional.  

Another issue that can be caused by having water trapped in your ears is tinnitus, this is when your hearing has been affected, and symptoms of this issue include a ringing sound in the ears and muffled hearing. There are many ways that tinnitus can develop, and professionals describe it as a symptom rather than an actual condition. When fluid is built up in the ears, it is normal to feel discomfort; however, if you think that you are suffering from tinnitus or experiencing any pain, it could be assigned that there is a more pressing problem. 

Many of you may not know that your ears and your hearing affect your coordination and balance, so if this is under strain in any way from having water in your ears, you could see that your balance is off when you try to move. This can be very surprising for anyone who is suffering from these issues as something so small and seemingly insignificant as water in the ears can have such a huge effect on the body.  


How to Get Rid of Water in Your Ears  

With trapped water in the ears having the potential to cause more serious issues if left untreated, you must tackle the issue before it has the chance to progress to an infection. For scuba divers or anyone else who spends a lot of time in the water, this is valuable information that can save you from the inconvenience of having to seek medical help. When you initially get out of the water for the first time, most of the excess fluid can be removed by simply shaking and tipping your head to help release the water. This simple trick can remove the potential for any medical assistance in the future, so it is something that you should implement into your routine every time you leave the water.  

In cases where there is a larger amount of trapped water in the ear, you may have to use other techniques to relieve any discomfort caused. If the water cannot be removed by gravity, you may want to try the Valsalva maneuver, which is also known as popping your ears. By simply holding your nose and blowing into it, you may find relief from any trapped water and pressure build-up that may be experienced. Be careful when using this technique, as you may cause further damage if you blow too hard.  

Another great technique to get rid of any water that is trapped in your ears is to use a hairdryer, this one of the most effective methods to evaporate any moisture completely. Still, there are some things to be considered before you do this. Using a hairdryer on the lowest available heat setting, you should hold the dyer at a safe distance and gently use it on the affected area. If there is any remaining water in the ear after trying this technique, it could signify the presence of a more serious problem that could need more drastic treatment.   


Treatment For Any Prolonged Issues  

The ears would have to be one of the most sensitive and fragile parts of the body. One wrong move with trying to treat an issue in this part of the body could seriously impact your health and hearing. This is why in times of uncertainty, it is so crucial that you seek professional help. You should avoid trying to do anything to your ears that you have not properly researched prior. If the water in your ears is still present after a few days, it could be a sign that you are suffering from an ear infection. If your ear is in pain, then taking over the counter painkillers is absolutely fine as long as the recommended dosages are abided by. If the pain is not relieved, then you may also want to think about going to a professional so that something stronger can be prescribed rather than leaving yourself in discomfort.  

Trapped water and any other implications that may have been caused within your ears can be treated with the application of cold and warm compresses as well as using swimmer drops to ensure that the affected area is clear from bacteria that can lead to further infection. Normally an infection of this kind will subside within a week, and your condition should return to normal. However, as mentioned previously, if you are unsure about anything, then it would be better to consult a professional who can make sure you are doing everything you can to recover.  

When going to see a doctor regarding an ear infection, they will likely encourage you to see if the infection will clear on its own. Still, in the more serious cases, a prescription for antibiotics will likely be recommended. This is usually penicillin, as it is the most effective in clearing up smaller infections such as this. If you are someone who tries to avoid using medicines like this, then I would say that visiting your local pharmacy for a more natural solution to the problem would be your best bet in getting rid of trapped water.