Conditions + Treatments

Treatments for Swimmer's Ear in Children

LIke ThisLIke ThisLIke ThisLIke ThisLIke This

Your child will likely feel better within seven to 10 days. Treatment may include:

  • antibiotic ear drops or oral antibiotics
  • corticosteroid ear drops (to help decrease the swelling)
  • pain medication
  • keeping the ear dry, as directed by your child's physician
  • a wick (a piece of sponge may be placed in your child's ear if there's a lot of swelling; this wick helps the antibiotic drops work more effectively in the ear canal)

How can I help my child prevent swimmer's ear?

Here are some hints for prevention:

  • Place two to three drops of a mixture of vinegar/isopropyl alcohol/water into your child's ear after the ears come in contact with water.
  • Use ear plugs for swimming or bathing.
  • Do not aggressively clean your child's ear canal.
Boston Children’s is so much more than a hospital—it’s a community of researchers, clinicians, administrators, support staff, innovators, teachers, patients and families, all working together to make the impossible possible. ”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital
300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
For Patients: 617-355-6000
For Referring Providers: 844-BCH-PEDS | 844-224-7337

Close