1. Otitis Externa (swimmer's ear)

Otitis externa is a condition that causes redness and swelling of the external ear canal. It usually affects only one ear.

Risk factors for developing Otitis externa include repeated exposure to water or excessive moisture in the ear canal from swimming, sweating, and humid environments

Symptoms of otitis externa include:

  • Ear pain
  • Ear canal itchiness and irritation
  • Redness and swelling of the outer ear
  • Discharge
  • Pressure and fullness
  • Hearing loss
  • Sometimes a pimple or boil

2. Otitis Media (middle ear infection)

Otitis Media is a type of ear infection that occurs when a bacterial or viral infection affects the nasal passages, throat, and eustachian tubes. Acute Otitis Media is painful but short in duration.

CausesOtitis Media often results from another illness that causes excess mucus or congestion. These illnesses include cold, flu, allergy, infected adenoids, or sinus infection 

PreventionBreastfeeding, avoiding secondhand smoke, immunizations, and preventing common colds and other respiratory illnesses. 

Signs and symptoms of Otitis Media

  • Ear pain
  • Drainage
  • In children: Crying, fussiness, tugging, or pulling an ear
  • Loss of balance
  • Fever
  • Ear pressure
  • Headache
  • Hearing loss


Some ear infections resolve without antibiotic treatment. After an initial observation period for at least 48 hours or fever, Jiffy Doctor recommends antibiotics to treat the ear infection.

When to see a doctor

  • Symptoms last for more than a day
  • Ear pain is severe
  • Discharge from the ear
  • Fever