“Baby, its cold outside!” We all know this famous lyric from the song, but sometimes that is exactly what your middle ear thinks.
Our bodies like being warm and covered with clothes, jackets, gloves, but often we forget about our ears. When our ears are exposed to continual cold temps, they proceed to try and protect themselves from the cold and wind. The result can be exostosis, or “surfer’s ear”.
This common issue is when the body grows extra bones or tissue in the ear canal to protect the inner parts from the cold. Most of the time these growths pose no problem, but extensive exposure and lead to more than normal growth that can result in surgery.
There are easy ways to prevent this, such as wearing a hat, earmuffs, or a hood when out in the cold. What this means is your mother was right — wear your hat when it’s cold!