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

You try swallowing hard and yawning but to no avail, your ears are clogged and you can’t do anything about it. You’ve tried popping your ear, chewing gum, or trying to open your ear canal with your finger. Hoping your ears will just unclog on their own, at some point you might just stop trying. And truthfully, you wouldn’t be wrong to try waiting a little bit to see if the problem goes away on its own unless, of course, you have discomfort, discharge, or other symptoms of an infection.

Your Eustachian tube, a small passageway that links your middle ear to the space behind your nose and regulates the air pressure level in your ears, can get clogged if it stays closed or open for too long. You might notice a popping and crackling noise in your ears as this tube closes and opens when you swallow or yawn. Typical hormonal changes cause the ear to remain open and viruses or ear infections will cause the ear to stay closed. It might take your ears a while to return to normal but both issues will go away with time.

Blocked ears can also be caused by a buildup of earwax. This type of ear clog can be eliminated with treatments, depending on the seriousness, this can be at home or at the hearing specialist. When managing plugged ears, here are some guidelines:

You Can Try Dripping Hydrogen Peroxide Drops in Your Ear

Hydrogen peroxide, if properly applied, can break up earwax. Hearing professionals recommend that you mix the solution with warm water making sure that the water is not too hot and then putting a drop or two in your ear with a dropper. After you tilt your ear upward and put the drops in, a few seconds should be sufficient to dissolve the wax clog. You may need to do this a few times a day for a couple of days, but ultimately, the clog should clear.

Don’t Stick Anything in Your Ear to Clean it

Seriously, this is worth repeating: it will only make the predicament worse if you attempt to use a cotton swab to clean your ears. Cotton swabs actually force earwax deeper inside your ear canal, which can cause a complete blockage. As a matter of fact, anything that gets inserted in your ears can cause an earwax blockage, including hearing aids and earplugs. Cotton swabs should only be used on your outer ear so that you can steer clear of blockage.

Pay Attention to Your Allergies

If you suffer from allergies, it can make a clogged ear worse. Always take your allergy treatments and follow your doctor’s directions on how to deal with it. Steer clear of any unneeded allergens, especially during allergy season.

If a Remedy Sounds Odd, Stay Clear of it

You should not put a lit candle in your ear which should go without saying. Ear candling is an old and very unscientific technique of removing earwax by putting a hollow candle into your ear and lighting it. The thought is that the heat from the flame produces a vacuum which draws the earwax into the hollow space in the candle. This doesn’t work and you will likely cause a lot more injury to your ears. If something doesn’t sound accurate, it most likely isn’t and it’s best to seek advice from a specialist. Don’t risk losing your hearing by just trying things.

If you don’t find any other solution, you should contact us. Unconventional wax removal can lead to significant problems in your ears, like a ruptured eardrum or irreversible hearing loss.

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