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

We’ve all experienced this, the annoying feeling when your ear is clogged and no amount of yawning and swallowing can make it feel better. You’ve tried chewing gum, popping your ears, and opening your ear canal with your finger. Sooner or later, you may contemplate giving up and just hope your ear clears up on its own. But if you have drainage, pain, or the symptoms of an ear infection, this would be a bad idea.

Your Eustachian tube, a little passageway that connects your middle ear to the space behind your nose and regulates the air pressure level in your ears, can become blocked if it stays closed or open for longer than it should. The tube normally opens and closes as you yawn or swallow, which you may notice by a crackling sound or pop in your ears. A virus or sinus infection could possibly cause the ear to stay closed, while hormonal changes can cause the ear to remain open. Both problems will clear up with time, but it might take quite a long time for your ears to get back to normal.

Blocked ears can also be caused by a buildup of earwax. Ear treatment can clear this kind of blockage, depending on the seriousness, this can be at home or at the hearing specialist. Here are a few tips when dealing with plugged ears:

You Can Try Dripping Hydrogen Peroxide Drops into Your Ear

Hydrogen peroxide, if correctly employed, can break up earwax. Hearing specialists suggest that you mix the solution with warm water making certain that the water is not too hot and then putting a drop or two in your ear with a pipette. After you tilt your ear upward and put the drops in, a few seconds should be enough to break up the wax clog. You could need to do this a few times a day for a couple of days, but ultimately, the blockage should clear.

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

Seriously, this is worth repeating: it will only make the situation worse if you attempt to use a cotton swab to clear your ears. 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 lead to an earwax obstruction, and that includes earplugs and hearing aids. In order to lessen earwax accumulation, you should only use cotton swabs on your outer ear.

Manage Your Allergies

If you have allergies, it can cause a clogged ear to get worse. Follow your doctor’s instructions about dealing with your allergies and never forget to take your treatment. Avoid any unnecessary allergens, specifically during allergy season.

Be Suspicious of Home Remedies That Sound Odd

You shouldn’t put a lit candle in your ear which should go without saying. Ear candling is an old and very pseudo-scientific method of removing earwax by inserting a hollow candle in your ear and lighting it. The idea is that the heat of the flame creates a vacuum which forces the earwax into the hollow tube in the candle. This does not work and you will likely cause a lot more harm to your ears. If something doesn’t seem right, it probably isn’t and it’s best to contact an expert. Don’t risk losing your hearing by simply trying things.

You should call us if your ears don’t clear up. Incorrect wax removal can lead to serious issues in your ears, like a ruptured eardrum or irreversible loss of hearing.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.