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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 swallowing and yawning can make it feel better. You’ve tried opening your ear canal with your finger, popping your ears, and chewing gum. Sooner or later, you might contemplate giving up and just keep your fingers crossed your ear unclogs by itself. But if you have drainage, discomfort, or the signs of an ear infection, this would be an unwise idea.

A small passageway that connects the middle ear to the place behind the nose and controls the pressure to the ears, called the eustachian tube, will become clogged if it remains closed or open for overly long. You might notice a crackling or popping noise in your ears as this tube closes and opens when you yawn or swallow. A virus, allergy or sinus infection might cause the ear to remain closed, while hormonal changes can cause the ear to stay open. Both concerns 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 blockage, either at home or at a hearing specialist depending on its seriousness. When managing blocked ears, here are some guidelines:

You Can Try Dripping Hydrogen Peroxide Drops into Your Ear

Hydrogen peroxide, if properly employed, can break up earwax. Hearing professionals suggest that you mix the solution with warm water making certain that the water isn’t too hot and then place a drop or two into your ear with a dropper. Your ear should be turned upward as you place the drops into your ear and you should stay that way for several seconds to let the hydrogen peroxide to break down the earwax clog. Ultimately, the clog should clear but you might need to repeat the process for several days.

Don’t Put Anything Inside Your Ear to Clean it

Seriously, this is worth repeating: never use a cotton swab to try and clean your ear, because you will only make things worse. Cotton swabs can cause complete blockage by pushing the earwax against the eardrum. Even hearing aids and earplugs can, in fact, cause an earwax clog. To avoid earwax buildup, you should only use cotton swabs on the outer ear.

Pay Attention to Your Allergies

Blocked ears are commonly made worse by allergies. Follow your doctor’s instructions about dealing with your allergies and never forget to take your treatment. Stay away from any unnecessary allergens, especially during allergy season.

Be Suspicious of Home Remedies That Sound Strange

It probably goes without saying, but you really should never stick a lit candle in your ear in order to clear away a clog caused by wax. Ear candling is an old and very unscientific method of clearing earwax by putting a hollow candle in your ear and lighting it. The theory is that earwax is drawn into the hollow space inside the candle when the heat of the flame causes a vacuum. This approach will most likely cause more damage and probably won’t help. If something doesn’t sound correct, it probably isn’t and it’s best to seek advice from a specialist. Randomly trying anything is a big risk to your hearing.

When all else fails, you should contact us. Permanent loss of hearing or a burst eardrum are the sorts of repercussions you could suffer from incorrect earwax removal.

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