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What You Should Know About The Most Common Ear Problems


Our body is able to face tons of problems that we resolve in our everyday life. We can navigate the world around us due to our anatomy and organs. When we experience adverse conditions within our body, we do anything to find treatments. Whether it’s sinusitis treatment in Singapore or a nasal checkup, we do a means to ensure that our body and its components are operating at optimal condition. 

Our ear is among the most crucial organs in our body. Our ear enables us to have a sense of hearing and balance. Hearing also permits us to interact and communicate with our surroundings, and it makes sense for us to do any means to ensure that our ear stays functional. 

When we experience abnormalities or hearing problems, we can perceive something unusual in our body because of how we accustom ourselves to it. Visiting an ENT specialist is often the most frequent avenue for determining proper treatment and diagnosis related to hearing problems and every ear infection in children and adults.

Understanding The Most Common Ear Problems

The way our body and ear work can be complex. As such, there are a number of conditions that one may experience that are either normal or abnormal. Here are a few different hearing and hearing problems that one may experience during their lifetime:


Tinnitus is a form of sound that comes from the internal rather than the external environment. Many describe it as a buzzing or clicking sound, and it may sometimes be disturbing for some. Almost a number of people may experience it throughout their lives.

Nonetheless, tinnitus may not pose any ‘serious’ problem. Still, some specialists may see it as a symptom of ear infection in children or when surgery becomes a necessary treatment. The possible cause of tinnitus is exposure to loud noise, Meniere’s disease, hearing loss or anything that can affect our hearing (such as ear wax or infections). Therefore, it is advisable to visit a specialist if tinnitus persists to help you determine if you have any underlying problem. 

Ear Infections 


Ear infections can be frequent (if experienced by many) or abnormal (requires medical treatment as soon as possible). Most ear infections occurring in the middle or outer part of the ear are much more common and less ‘serious’ than problems in the inner part of the ear. Ear infections in children and adults may also vary.

The most common external ear infections are:

Otitis externa 

Otitis externa (also known as the ‘swimmer’s ear’) is the most common external ear infection since almost everyone can get it. It is a bacterial infection where symptoms range from itchy, painful or foul-smelling fluid discharge inside the ear. Other symptoms also include swelling and reddening of the external ear, and hearing is affected. Also, almost every ear infection in children falls within otitis externa.

The bacteria may start to inhabit the surface of the ear’s skin when the skin barrier breaks due to fingernails, frequent swims or cotton tips, and it is where the infection starts. Visiting an ENT specialist provides the immediate treatment.

Pinna infection

Pinna infection happens in the outer part of the ear called ‘pinna’, under the ear cartilage, where the bacteria begin to reside. In severe cases, the bacteria may damage the cartilage area, creating a deformed look and causing an abscess. The common symptoms of pinna infection are the swollen, painful and reddish look in the outer part of the ear, primarily under the cartilage.

The most frequent treatment method for pinna infections is an admission of antibiotics. When the problem progresses into an abscess, incision and drainage become necessary.

Most would think that going for ear wax removal in Singapore can solve inner ear infections. But it is not the case for every ear problem. 

Here’s what you should know about common inner/mid-ear infections:

Acute otitis media

When the bacteria or virus reach the eustachian tube (a small canal that connects the middle ear to the back of the nose) is the primary cause of acute otitis media. Children are among the high-risk factors for acute otitis media due to their anatomy. As a common ear infection in children, the problem usually goes away or resolves on its own without taking painkillers or antibiotics. However, a specialist may start using antibiotics if the symptom or condition becomes severe.

Symptoms of acute otitis media among children are fluid discharge in the ear, pain, hearing loss and even fever. It’s crucial to teach children to wash their hands and clean their playthings to avoid bacterial or viral infection that triggers acute otitis media.

Serous otitis media

As another contender for being a common ear infection in children, serous otitis media happens after a middle ear infection. The symptoms are pus or fluid build-up in the inner part of the ear. One can treat it with antibiotics, while small drainage tubes become necessary for severe cases.

Hearing Loss

Hearing loss can happen in one or both parts of the ear when there is a problem with transmitting sound waves or vibrations inside the organ. 

The most common type of hearing loss problems are:

  • Conductive hearing loss (problem with transferring sound waves from the external to the internal) 
  • Sensorineural hearing loss (damage in the hearing organ) 

Treating hearing loss differs depending on the underlying condition. In some cases, opting for ear wax removal may resolve the problem, while some will need surgical operations. Consider seeing a specialist if you are experiencing hearing loss for accurate diagnosis and treatment you need.

If you are looking for earwax removal or treatment for allergic rhinitis in Singapore, visit Dr Jenca Yong’s website for more service details.