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Old 06-08-2011   #1
Boulder, 80301
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 100
Ruptured Eardrum

I ruptured my eardrum this week and was told to stay out of the water for two weeks. Does anyone have a good earplug they use and would recommend? I would like to keep the river water out once this thing heals.


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Old 06-08-2011   #2
USAF Academy, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 14
I am new to whitewater rafting but have done triathlons for about 3 years. When I ruptured my eardrum (off a diving board) I just used standard swimmer's ear plug wax. The stuff is a soft wax that you can then press out to fit the shape of your ear and it works really well. Allowed me to keep training while it was still ruptured

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Old 06-08-2011   #3
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 772
I'm a fan of the doc's proplugs. I've also used the Christmas tree looking earplugs and didn't like them as much. Doc's are around $10 bucks.
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Old 06-08-2011   #4
Beaverton, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 569
I wear the Doc's every time I'm in my kayaks. They keep you almost dry.
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Old 06-08-2011   #5
They call me Jon
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 07
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 65
Third for Doc's. You can still hear well with them, and they keep your ear very dry. I have used them for multiple purposes. And they come with a little strap so you don't loose them.
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Old 06-08-2011   #6
dillon, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 281
This is getting repetitive but I also love my doc's earplugs, however it sounds like you should probably use ones without the little hole in the center as that can let a small amount of water into the ear canal where it could possibly cause an infection. As I'm sure you know, with a ruptured eardrum any infection is no bueno.
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Old 06-08-2011   #7
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Lakewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,234
The plugs will only protect you from water ingress. If you swim out of a boat and through a hole the pressure exerted will not be prevented by the ear plugs, and you'll risk re-injuring it (presuming you get in the water during the 2 week period... it may be that you don't intend such things). Just a warning. If you're not likely to fall out or take a swim through a hole then plugs will help.
On the river, I can abandon who I am and what I've done. However brief it lasts, while on the river I am nothing important and everything insignificant. I am flotsam, and happy to be so.
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Old 06-08-2011   #8
Boulder, 80301
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 100
Thanks everyone Docs it is. Appreciate the help!
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Old 06-08-2011   #9
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,408
I use the Doc's as well and they work pretty good but some times for me they leak a bit. I use them when boating where I want to have a decent chance of hearing my fellow paddler's conversation.

Otherwise, I use the Christmas tree units and they seem to seal better than the Doc's.

I have had infection on one ear drum so bad they had to grind it off (talk about praying the Doc's hand eye coordination was spot on) so the medicine could work. After this infection I always wear ear plugs of some type and keep several of them in my PFD pocket - just in case.

Sounds like you are but I will just repeat my advice is to stay out of the water till the Doc sez everything is healed properly and then get the best fitting ear plugs you can find.

I also wash out ears with a 50 50 mix of clear vinegar and clear alcohol using a dropper. You can probably pick up a small bottle for this mixture at your drug store Rx. This was the mix as advised by the ear Doc I used and I would ask your Doc for the best mix for your situation.
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Old 06-08-2011   #10
Boulder, 80301
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 100
I am out till the doc says I am good to go, hurts like crazy and the doc said if water gets into the eardrum I will know a new level of pain. Thanks for the advice!

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