Just back from the Hospital Dermo for this very problem. I can only mainly sleep on my left side due to scoliosis causing the skin on my left ear to break down. My problem started a few years back as a very small acne spot on my ear but the continual pressure due to my sleep position has caused the cartilage in the ear to be inflamed and sore. The Hosp Doc gave a big fancy name for it but he said it was basically contact dermitis on top of inflamed ear cartilage. The most sever treatment He has mentioned so far is plastic surgery to remove the damaged cartilage and a skin graft. but I have opted to continue with the cryo freeze (mega cold liquid stuff that should encourage healing) and a new cream.
I found the cold weather had a real bad effect on it as does really hot sunny weather. Always have to put lots of sun cream on my ears.
DIY first aid:- at the minute I am constantly applying E45 to see if it will heal better if the skin is more supple.
Cushions:- I find my firmer memory foam pillow makes it worse so have been trying to alternate between different pillows. I try t use soft pillow cases like flannelette as cotton can be too rough.
Bandage up:- Have tried all sorts of dressings. have even tried cutting a hole on a flat ish baby sponge and bandaging it over my ear Pudsey bear style. Works not too bad but really need a helper to get it comfortable.
Hope you find a solution
"The race is not given to the swift nor the strong but he who endures until the end"