Clogged ear is an annoying condition that sometimes causes painful symptoms. If you constantly feel as if you are underwater, or water has splashed in your ears, then most likely you are having a clogged or blocked ear. It is a very common incidence, which many of us experience at some point or the other. Getting yourself aware about clogged ear causes and associated symptoms helps in diagnosing the problem at an early stage. There are also some relief methods, which you can practice at home.
Causes and Symptoms
In majority of the cases, there is a blockage in the ear due to impacted earwax or presence of fluid. Another prime cause of this irritating ear problem is sudden change in the pressure of the surrounding environment. This is the main reason why many flight passengers complain of clogged ears after flying. Other reasons are viral infections, sinusitis, allergies, eustachian tube dysfunction, problems in middle ear, and inner ear disorders.
Speaking about the symptoms of a clogged ear, a feeling that something is blocking the ear passage is the most prominent sign. Some people experience a feeling of fluid sloshing in the ears. Mild to severe ear pain is also a noticeable symptom of blocked ears. In fact, more than 85 percent children suffer from ear pain due to blocked ears.
Treatment and Remedy
If the condition is left untreated, it can lead to serious complications, such as ear infections, trouble hearing, and at times, hearing loss. Hence, even though it is not very serious, timely treatment of this ear problem is imperative to avoid further complications. Effective relief methods depend on the causal factor. Following are some of the effectual home remedies for unclogging the ears:
- In children, improper bathing or delay in cleaning earwax often cause blockage in the ear passage. In such cases, taking care during bathing and regular earwax removal can help to clear blocked ears.
- At times, repeated swallowing helps in clearing clogged ears. Taking a hot shower for at least 10-15 minutes also help unclog the ear. Over here, exposure to steam loosens clogged earwax. After shower, gently clean earwax with buds.
- If you are experiencing the blockage due to earwax buildup, use dilute hydrogen peroxide solution. Applying a drop of hydrogen peroxide to the affected ear from outer side will help in getting rid of earwax.
- Another remedy for removing earwax is using warm olive oil. Lie down in a convenient position and put 1-2 drops of warm olive oil in the ear. Stay in the same position for 5 minutes, and allow the earwax to soften. Then, gently clean with ear buds.
- For a blocked ear feeling during the take off or landing of the flight, you can try frequent yawning, or chew gums. Doing so will balance air pressure in the ears and clear the blockage.
- Clogged ears and sinus infection are often related. As sinusitis causes increased mucus secretion, patients tend to blow their nose frequently and the result is blockage in their ears. In order to avoid this, do not hard blow your nose at any cost. Also, keep your mouth open during nose blowing.
Proper care has to be taken while cleaning earwax; never use sharp instruments for the purpose. If the above-mentioned home remedies for clogged ears do not show any improvement, consult a qualified physician for treatment. Also, it is important to know that blockage in the ears caused due to infections or serious ear problems cannot be treated at home. Hence, getting the condition checked by a doctor is recommended in such cases.