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

You try to swallow hard and yawn but to no avail, your ears are clogged and there’s nothing you can do about it. You’ve tried chewing gum, popping your ears, and opening your ear canal with your finger. Sooner or later, you might consider giving up and just hope your ear unclogs by itself. And honestly, you wouldn’t be incorrect to attempt to wait a while to see if the problem goes away on its own unless, of course, you have soreness, drainage, or other signs of an infection.

A small passageway that connects the middle ear to the place behind the nose and regulates the pressure that goes the ears, called the eustachian tube, will get blocked if it remains closed or open for too long. You might notice a crackling or popping noise in your ears as this tube opens and closes when you swallow or yawn. A , virus or sinus infection could cause the ear to stay closed, while hormonal changes can make the ear stay open. Both concerns will clear up with time, but it may take quite a while for your ears to return to normal.

Another cause of blocked ears is buildup of earwax. This type of ear clog can be cleared with treatments, either at home or at a hearing specialist depending on its severity. When managing clogged ears, here are some tips:

You Can Try Putting Hydrogen Peroxide Drops in Your Ear

Hydrogen peroxide, if properly applied, can dissolve 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 into your ear with a dropper. Your ear should be tilted upward while you put the drops into your ear and you should stay that way for several seconds to allow the hydrogen peroxide to break down the earwax clog. Ultimately, the clog should clear but you may have to repeat the process for a few days.

Never Clean Your Ear by Putting Something in it

This can’t be overstated: don’t use a cotton swab to try and unblock your ear, because you will only make things worse. Cotton swabs can cause total blockage by forcing the earwax into the eardrum. Even earplugs and hearing aids can, in fact, cause an earwax blockage. To lessen earwax buildup, you should only use cotton swabs on the outer ear.

Your Allergies Need to be Managed

If you have allergies, it can make a blocked ear worse. Follow your doctor’s instructions concerning how to treat your allergies and never forget to take your treatment. Unneeded allergens should be definitely avoided during allergy season specifically but also the rest of the year.

Be Hesitant of Home Remedies That Sound Strange

It probably goes without saying, but you seriously should never put a lit candle into your ear to clean out an earwax blockage. Ear candling is an old and very pseudo-scientific way of clearing earwax by putting a hollow candle in your ear and lighting it. In theory, earwax is drawn into the hollow space inside the candle when the heat of the flame causes a vacuum. This does not work and you will probably cause a lot more harm to your ears. If something doesn’t sound accurate, it most likely isn’t and it’s best to contact an expert. Don’t risk damaging your hearing by just trying anything.

When all else fails, you should get in touch with us. Incorrect wax removal can trigger serious issues in your ears, like a burst eardrum or long-term hearing loss.

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.
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