View Full Version : tore a hole in my ear drum

07-28-2009, 04:35 PM
I was out wakeboarding yesterday and landed dirty and tore a hole in my ear drum. Doc said it should heal up on its own in about 6 weeks and if i do get in the water put in an ear plug. What is yalls take on how long i should be out for riding. I was thinking two weeks and then stick a plug in there and just take some easy sets and until my six weeks is up.

07-28-2009, 04:52 PM
Sorry to hear! (pun intended... :)) If you get a good silicone ear plug, why wait?

07-28-2009, 08:49 PM
From what I know as long as you have good silicone ear plugs you don't have to take any time off. It really has to do with your comfort level on how soon you want to start back. Make sure you have a follow up to make sure it heals completely

07-28-2009, 09:27 PM
any dizziness or loss of balance? If not put a plug in it and get back out there man!

07-28-2009, 10:52 PM
About 2 months ago I posted about my sons ruptured ear drum so you might want to go back and look for "slap boxing".
Yeah you could put a silicon ear plug in but are you 100% sure that the bacteria you pick up from the water around the ear (which is from the lake a nice bacteria rich stew) won't migrate into your open wound? We were told that it would be six months before my son could get in the water, but he did have to have surgery to repair his ear drum, it was ruptured so bad they took a skin graph from behind his ear and made a patch to cover the hole in his ear drum. Luckily my son (12 years old) is a FAST healer and after about 3 weeks he was allowed back in the water, after the doctor (ENT surgeon) verified that it had healed over. BUT I promised the doctor that he would wear a Pro-Tec helmet with the ear cover whenever he was skiing, kneeboarding, surfing or wakeboarding. My son wasn't happy (it was his younger sisters helmet) at first but now he just grabs the helmet and has fun. If I was you I wouldn't get it wet for at least 2 weeks and then after that I would revisit the doctor (are you going to an Ear Nose and Throat Doc?) and ask if the ear plug was ok to use. And for sure if I was you I would get a helmet with the ear pads. That spot will be weak and it wouldn't take much at all to blow it out again! Only the next time it could be worse and they could be going behind your ear for a skin graph! That hurt my son more than the ruptured drum!

07-29-2009, 01:45 AM
dang that sucks. The simple answer is just don't crash then you will not get water in the ear.

07-29-2009, 02:03 AM
Well I will only get one set in anyways in the next two weeks, so ill probably just sit it out. Im going to wait and see if it is healing properly before i ride again. I will probably wear plugs too, and take your advice and just not fall. Simple as that haha. Yah I really don't like the idea of the skin graph either. Well thanks for yall's input guys I really appreciate it. And trust me this fall won't keep me from trying again. I mean I almost landed it!

07-29-2009, 07:26 AM
Same thing happened to a buddy of mine last Tuesday on Henry Hagg. He took a nasty fall and ruptured his ear drum also. He went to the doc and she told him 7 days or so. He came out today and wore some earplugs and did fine. He didn't do anything big today just some nice easy ridding.

He tried the swimmers ear stuff. Basically it was alcohol and vinegar, but his doc said jsut keep it dry and your ok.

Ian Brantford
07-29-2009, 01:19 PM
I must agree on the importance of wearing a helmet with ear flaps.

There are some who say that helmets do more harm than good in watersports. My response is that you have to be wearing a correctly fitting helmet. I agree that having significant room for the helmet to move may or may not make it smack your head hard than the water. Adjust it so that fits well.

I have mostly Protec helmets. Some of them use an internal strap adjusting attachment that has a little peg on each side that fits into one of four holes. Note that these can let go, especially during a crash (which might be by design). They should be checked each time they are used. You have to pull off each ear flap's front snap to see the strap's attachment.

Also, it's time for me to again plug wearing a Neck Roll (http://cinchmax.com/_wsn/page3.html).

I recently started using some watersport goggles (http://www.bartswatersports.com/catalog.asp?P=4427) that prevent "eye openers". It's amazing how much braver they make me.

07-29-2009, 04:21 PM
damn well maybe ill ride then friday. I have some silicon ear plugs that u roll in a ball then stick in ur ear. It says its waterproof but i just didn't know how they would do on a fall. What kind did he use?

07-29-2009, 04:50 PM
I don't recall the product name they were at Walgreens though LOL. They were cone shaped with compressible rings on them, like 3 of them so they could block out water. If you have the compressible ball kind that form to your ear those are the best IMO.

I have the cheap form kind that you compress and put in your ear i use when my ears are bothering me.

07-30-2009, 05:49 PM
Ear plugs designed for watersports! My daughter used them (was on the ProPlug team for a while) when she was younger and had some ear infection problems. The vented plugs are designed for watersports.


08-04-2009, 03:29 AM
I was out wakeboarding yesterday and landed dirty and tore a hole in my ear drum. Doc said it should heal up on its own in about 6 weeks and if i do get in the water put in an ear plug. What is yalls take on how long i should be out for riding. I was thinking two weeks and then stick a plug in there and just take some easy sets and until my six weeks is up.


The reason I have my Moomba is that I'm living inland now - no waves. No worries, though.

In 1989 I ruptured an eardrum while surfing in NC (my home). I took off on a much bigger wave than I was qualified for, but given another chance, I'd do it again. Now 20 years later in a lake in Tennessee, I can still blow bubbles out of my right ear. The perforation in my right eardrum never did close up.

It's not a big deal. It's become second nature to maintain some positive pressure when I'm under water. I've even been diving below 120 ft with no issues as long as I was thinking.

I think it's normal for your eardrum to finally close up. Mine never did. I have very slight hearing loss in my right ear. At age 46 it doesn't really bother me. Just hoping it doesn't get worse later.

08-11-2009, 07:51 PM
I have to disagree with the helmet suggestions. A few years ago, while wearing a Protec helmet I ruptured my eardrum due to the helmet.

We had set up a ramp at the end of the pier and were jumping BMX bikes off of it. After my buddy nearly killed himself by catching the edge of the ramp, I decided to put on the helmet. Then when I jumped the ramp, as I entered the lake all the water rushed into my helmet. The water had nowhere to escape so the pressure built up to the point that my eardrum ruptured.

I know they make "vented" ear pads for the helmets, but that would seem to contradict the initial point of preventing water from rushing in.

08-12-2009, 12:23 AM
A helmet no matter what sport is NEVER a bad thing!

Not all Pro Tec helmets have the Ear Flaps which are designed to sheild the ear in the event of a fall where water would slap the ear.
And to be honest I don't understand or I can't picture in my head how pressure built up in a helmet? Does this helmet cover the ears? Is it a water sports helmet? Do you have a video?
I guess my concern here is due to some freak accident experienced doing a sport that maybe .05%, ok lets make it .005% of the population MIGHT do you "express" the idea that a helmet caused an injury. OK I can say that there are some freak accidents that maybe a helmet (.005%) may make a situation worse. But "I" wouldn't express my idea's or thoughts or beliefs to the effect that I would convince someone to NOT wear ANY type of SAFETY gear.
Again these are my thoughts and maybe because I have a huge OSHA type audit in 2 weeks and I have to train idiots who think safety glasses are NOT required in a machine shop to wear them, yeah maybe I am overreacting!
But my kids WILL wear their helmets!!!

08-12-2009, 12:25 AM
I work in the medical field and I work with head injured patient's on a daily basis. I also work with audiologists and ear nose and throat doctors and have discussed this very topic. What people need to understand is that a ruptured ear drum can be caused by whiplash itself. Not just from water rushing into the ear.


08-12-2009, 11:31 AM
After my two week checkup, my doc said my hole had healed over but was still prty thin, and that i should avoid flying for another couple weeks, which wont be happening. I went riding the day before too and just put a foam plug in. The doc said your eardrum is always going to be weaker in the spot for the rest of your life. So he said just putting some type of plug in wouldn't hurt when i ride. He also said once my offseason rolls around that i should heal up nicely, but will still always be a lil weaker than it normally was.

08-12-2009, 12:30 PM

between barefootin and wakeboardin, I've done this 3 times now to my left ear..... Cannot for the life of me stop turning my head on impact.

I don't have to pop that ear on flights any more, but don't hear out of it as well either. I would say you done good, and when it happens again just be sure to avoid lake water in it for a couple weeks. That crystal clear Dale Hollow water I board in just isn't that clear :)