Friday, March 13, 2009

Should ear drops for swimmer's ear be gluten-free?

I haven't been posting for awhile, because after I started swimming again, my increased efforts resulted in a truly nasty bout of swimmer's ear. Very painful - very annoying - very tiring. So I was back out of the pool for a couple of weeks. Here's what I learned:
  • I should have been using earplugs to keep out the water
  • I should have used a half vinegar/half rubbing alcohol solution and dropped that in my ears before and after the workout. Evidently, the vinegar is the correct PH while the alcohol kills the infections before they get started.
  • q-tips can irritate your ear canal, so don't go there
  • Antibiotic ear drops were, bizarrely, very hard to acquire, resulting in an extra day of totally unnecessary pain
  • I really didn't care if my ear drops were gluten free or not (but should I?)
That extra day of pain reminds me of the (thankfully infrequent) times when I am absolutely miserable and am asking a pharmacist if the medication is gluten-free or not. You'd think that this information would be readily available, but it isn't, and it's especially aggravating on the weekends when the manufacturer is closed.

It makes me wonder when the pharmaceutical industry is going to wake up on this topic -- probably not until people start reporting adverse reactions...

Anyway, I'm thrilled to be back in the water today.