Even if a clogged ear does not hurt or cause discomfort, garbled noises and straining to hear can be a real agony.
Within hours or days, your ear may unclog on its own. However, there are various home cures and pharmaceuticals that might provide immediate relief. It’s also beneficial to investigate possible causes of a plugged ear while treating it.
You and your doctor can then figure out the best strategy to cure the clog and avoid future issues.
1. Eustachian tube blockage.
A blocked ear can be caused by a blockage in the Eustachian tube.
The middle ear is connected to the throat by the Eustachian tube.
This tube transports fluid and mucus from the ear to the back of the throat, where it is swallowed. Fluid and mucus can become caught in the middle ear and plug the ear instead of going down the throat.
An infection, such as the common cold, influenza, or sinusitis, generally causes this blockage.
Here are other signs of an infection:
•a stuffy nose
•and sore throat .
An ear infection can also be caused by swimming. When water lingers in the ear after swimming, this occurs.
The following are symptoms of an ear infection:
2. Higher altitude
While scuba diving, driving up a mountain, or flying in an airplane, some people have transient ear congestion.
This obstruction is caused by a fast change in air pressure outside the body. An altitude adjustment can sometimes result in only one side effect: a plugged ear. You may experience headaches, nausea, or shortness of breath if you get high altitude sickness.
Earwax protects your ear by cleaning the canal and keeping dirt out. Wax is generally soft, but it can harden and obstruct the ear canal.
Other symptoms of a plugged ear caused by earwax include: •
•a ringing sensation in the ears
Cleaning the interior of the ear with a cotton swab can sometimes cause obstructions. Earwax can be pushed farther into the ear with this type of cleansing.
4. Acoustic neuroma
Acoustic neuroma is a benign tumor on the cranial nerve that connects the inner ear with the brain. These tumors are usually tiny and slow-growing. They can, however, put pressure on inner ear nerves as they become larger.
This can result in a clogged ear, hearing loss, and ear ringing.
When should you consult a doctor? If you can’t clear your ears with home methods, see a doctor.