Health Alert: A Common Item Is Sending Illinoisans To The Doctor
For those who might be thinking "Oh, great. Another piece about Covid-19, or monkeypox, or whatever the current topical health worry might be," don't worry. This is not about either of those medical difficulties.
The bright side about this weird or unusual reason for heading to see your doctor is that by the time you've finished reading this, you'll know whether you will have this problem or not.
So you've got that going for you. Which is nice.
Ear Buds, Air Pods (Whatever You May Call These Little Ear-Phones), Are Giving Illinoisans A Reason To Make A Doctor's Appointment
And it's all about keeping things clean, whether it's the ear buds themselves, or the ears you shove them in to. Headphones collect sweat, dirt and bacteria that can be transferred to your ears and set you up for dangerous infections.
Dr. Sina Joorabchi (otolaryngologist and facial plastic surgeon):
Otomycosis occurs in high humidity environments, summer months, or when the ear has been traumatized by a Q-tip. Think of that wet log you lift off the grassy forest floor and notice a growth of mushrooms...it's not so dissimilar to that.
What Can You Do To Avoid These Problems Without Giving Up Your Ear Buds?
According to doctors at Illinois' Rush University Medical Center, start out by keeping them, and the case they're stored in, clean by using alcohol. Also, give your ears a break once in a while.
An ENT doctor at Rush University Medical Center, Dr. Elias Michaelides says he is seeing plenty of patients with symptoms.
“I would recommend everyone takes their earbuds out for at least five minutes every hour, if using them continuously, to get some air into the ear,” Dr. Michaelides said.
Michaelides also recommends trying out different brands to get the right fit.
“There shouldn’t be any pain or irritation after wearing them."