Most fungal ear infections are caused by two types of fungus: aspergillus (the most likely cause) and candida.
As fungi prefer a warm, moist environment, there are certain activities that can increase your likelihood of developing a fungal ear infection, including water sports such as swimming or SCUBA diving. You’re also at greater risk during the summer, or if you live in a warm or tropical climate.
You should also reduce how often you use cotton buds, as they can remove protective wax (cerumen) from within your ear canal, providing any fungus with more favourable conditions.
You’re also at greater risk if you have a chronic medical or skin condition, such as:
- A weakened immune system
- Trauma to your ear canal