I used to wear the Xmas-tree type plugs. No longer recommend them, because (as someone mentioned) your ears still feel water pressure. And ironically, these things feel worse if there's any leakage.
The other problem with the tree-type plugs is that if you ever blow out slightly through your nose while wearing nose clips (good practice for when you do NOT wear nose clips, as it reduces the amount of water entering the sinuses), there is pressure against your ears from INSIDE.
I now wear the vented Doc's earplugs PLUS a neoprene cap that covers the ears. This combo keeps the ears protected from sudden high water pressure, yet hearing is still good. A little water will work its way beyond the plugs, but this is easily removed.
Whatever water remains in my ears, I clean with a 50/50 vinegar/isopropyl alcohol mix. An eyedropper is easiest to use, but mostly I put the mix in a small plastic squirt bottle that REI sells in the cooking-gear section.
And I'd stay out of the water until the ruptured ear is totally healed!