Foreign Body in the Ear

Any objects that could easily enter the ear of a child can cause problem. The hole of the ear has a special action, as great as that of the nostrils. The variety of objects poked in is as wide as the ingenuity of the person doing it. Gravel is popular, beads, bits plastic toys, vegetable seeds, and beans. Objects such as insects small moths, or even beetles may gain entrance, quite apart from any on the part of the patient.

Once when working in a rural town, I had a shearer come into see me, “Something’s boring a hole in my ear,” was the anguished comment. Examination showed that while he had slept in the shearing shed, a black beetle had crawled into his car. Reaching the drum, it simply tried to keep going, boring away at the drum. It seemed as though a bulldozer were boring its way through his skull. The slippery, tough shell of the beetle’s back made the job of removal hard. But it was removed with no adverse aftermath.

Foreign Body in Ear Symptoms

There may be some discomfort, or even lack of hearing, in particular if objects of vegetable origin are the riders, for these may absorb fluid, and completely block the canal. Infections may occur as a result, particularly if the object is present for many days. Dire attention is sought. A common disturbing cause of trouble here is temporary insertion of foreign objects the ear canal. Women are the worst, often pushing bobby pins into canal and prodding around for one reason or another—or no reason at all. One seems to find this gives some sensual feeling, and so the habit persists. It is a dangerous way of introducing infections, should be stopped permanently.

Foreign Body in Ear Treatment

Unless the foreign body is close to the outer and can be simply grasped by the use of forceps or a paperclip, do not touch it. Seek medical help. Often the doctor will be able to remove it promptly with special instruments. Ear curettes or crocodile forceps are helpful in simply lifting objects out. But more deeply placed ones, particularly if associated with infections, may need an anesthetic and deeper probing. Antibiotics and analgesics may be given if there is the likelihood of infection.