2 Ways to Keep Your Child's Ear Dry After Atresia Repair

Posted on: 8 September 2017


If you've decided ear surgery is the best option to repair your child's congenital aural atresia, it's a good idea to start preparing for the procedure in advance. In particular, one thing you need to know is how to keep your little one's ear dry once the surgery is over. Most surgeons will recommend keeping the ear canal free of water for a month or two after the procedure to ensure the canal heals without infection. Of course, this can be a challenge when it comes to young children who enjoy water play and aren't yet responsible enough to know how to keep themselves dry. Thankfully, with some careful planning, it shouldn't be too difficult to ensure your child's ear canal doesn't get wet before it's healed: check out these 2 tips to find out how.

Use Dry Shampoo

Bathing isn't usually too much of a problem for children who need to keep their ears dry. As long as they avoid splashing or submerging themselves, children should be able to avoid water getting into their ears. However, problems do arise when it comes to washing hair. As a child's hair is so close to their ears, it's impossible to wash it as normal without getting their ears wet. One way to keep the ear dry is to use an ear plug or some cotton wool smeared with petroleum jelly to create a barrier between the ear canal and the water, but this method isn't foolproof. Instead, a better way to reduce the risk of getting moisture in the ear is to use dry shampoo in place of some of your child's hair-washing sessions. Dry shampoo comes in the form of a powder or spray that you apply to your child's hair and scalp then towel off to remove the dirt and oil. This allows you to 'wash' your child's hair as frequently as needed without using water. 

Buy a Waterproof Skull Cap

One waterproofing tool commonly recommended by ENT surgeons is the skull cap. Skull caps are close-fitting hats that come down over the ears. They can hold ear cups in place and cover bandages, and the waterproof models can also keep moisture away from the ear. There are many situations where these skull caps are useful. If you live in a part of Australia with heavy rainfall, for example, a cap can ensure no rain water soaks through your child's bandages. If your child is too young to adhere to your 'no splashing' instructions during bath time, a skull cap will create a more secure barrier against flying water than cotton wool can. As a result, skull caps are an ideal way to protect your child's ear canal from water without restricting what they can do after surgery.