Editor’s Note: The following piece is an account of the author’s experience. It is intended to offer insight into a common health issue for surfers and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. If you are experiencing ear problems you think may be a result of surfing, you should consult your physician.
Spring is kind of an unofficial ear surgery season for surfers suffering from exostosis, also known as surfer’s ear. It’s a common, uncomfortable condition in which the combination of cooler wind and cold water can cause abnormal bone growth in the ear canal. The growth can eventually completely block the canal which results in severe hearing loss and chronic earaches.