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Eastside Audiology - Issaquah, WA Eastside Audiology - Issaquah, WA

Woman trying to clear a clogged ear by shaking water out of it.

You try swallowing hard and yawning but it’s no use, your ears are clogged and you can’t do anything about it. You’ve tried chewing gum, popping your ears, and opening your ear canal with your finger. Hoping your ears will simply unclog by themselves, at some point you may just stop trying. But if you have discharge, pain, or the symptoms of an ear infection, this would be an unwise idea.

Your Eustachian tube, a small passageway that connects your middle ear to the space behind your nose and controls the air pressure level in your ears, can become blocked if it stays closed or open for longer than it should. You might hear a crackling or popping noise in your ears as this tube opens and closes when you swallow or yawn. A virus, sinus infection or allergy might cause the ear to remain closed, while hormonal changes can cause the ear to remain open. Both issues will go away over time, but it might take quite a long time for your ears to return to normal.

Plugged ears can also be caused by a buildup of earwax. Ear treatment can clear this kind of clog, depending on the severity, this can be at home or at the hearing professional. When dealing with plugged ears, here are some suggestions:

Try Drops of Hydrogen Peroxide in Your Ear

Hydrogen peroxide, if correctly employed, can break up earwax. Mixing the peroxide with luke warm water and using a dropper to gradually put it in your ear is the expert’s suggestion. Your ear should be tilted upward as you place the drops into your ear and you should keep it that way for a few seconds to allow the hydrogen peroxide to dissolve the earwax blockage. You could have to do this a few times a day for a couple of days, but eventually, the blockage should clear up.

Sticking Something into Your Ear is Never The Right Way to Clean it

Seriously, this is worth restating: don’t use a cotton swab to try to clean your ear, because you will only make things worse. Cotton swabs can cause complete blockage by pushing the earwax into the eardrum. As a matter of fact, anything that gets inserted in your ears can easily lead to an earwax blockage, and that includes hearing aids and earplugs. To lessen earwax accumulation, you should only use cotton swabs on the outer ear.

Pay Attention to Your Allergies

If you suffer from allergies, it can make a clogged ear worse. Follow your doctor’s advice regarding dealing with your allergies and don’t forget to take your medication. Avoid any unnecessary allergens, particularly during allergy season.

Be Hesitant of Home Remedies That Sound Odd

You shouldn’t stick a lit candle in your ear which should go without saying. Ear candling is an old technique of inserting a hollow candle in your ear and lighting it which is very unscientific. Theoretically, earwax is drawn into the hollow space inside the candle when the heat of the flame creates a vacuum. This doesn’t work and you will probably cause a lot more damage to your ears. Don’t forget, if it sounds strange you should ask an expert. Don’t risk losing your hearing by just trying things.

When all else fails, you should contact us. Permanent hearing loss or a burst eardrum are the kinds of consequences you could experience from improper earwax removal.

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